Herman Hesse, the German-Swiss poet, novelist and painter, was born in 1877 in Calw, Germany. His parents were Christian missionaries, with interests in book publishing, and young Herman grew up in a world of theological discussion. Through his grandfather, who had worked in India as a missionary, he also possessed a keen awareness of Eastern philosophy and spirituality.
Siddhartha, a story based on the early life of Gautama Buddha, is concerned with the human search for self-knowledge and authentic spirituality. Hesse had written the first part of the book easily enough, but had to stop for a year with depression, before completing it in 1922. The book is a synthesis of Buddhist, Hindu, Taoist, and Christian thought, though Hesse rejected all conventional religion for a more individual and personal path. As he wrote: ‘The only thing of importance to me is being able to love the world, without looking down on it, without hating it and myself - being able to regard it and myself and all beings with love, admiration, and reverence.’
He became popular for his spiritual writing in the American counter-culture scene of the 1960s - and since his death in 1962, he has been one of the best-selling German writers in the world.
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Artist / Musician
This is a very good performance of a realy wonderful and insightful book. It provides a very accessable look at Budest concepts and life in india during the time of the Buda. It does not pretend to be a teacher or a preacher, it simply tells the story in an eligant simple way and alows the reader/listner to be carried along and emersed in this insightful and moving parable. Highly recomended.
Sidartha is the main character, he is very likeable and interesting, providing a good vehicle for the Budest concepts Hesse is trying to convey.
The narrator did a great job of presenting this lively text without over acting or remaining too bland. The listner is imediatly drawn into the story and will notice the narration very little. As it should be.
A journey into the heart of Budisim
This book is a well-read classic - so we know the content is superb! Still, if you don't bring yourself to the material - you'll get nothing out of it. (Is that statement sufficiently Buddhist?) Anyway, the narrator - although mellow and methodical - really lent a nice tone to the reading. This is a story about the primogenitor of Buddhism - so it BETTER be mellow and methodical. Besides, it's fairly short - so give it a try! I thought it was worth the credit!
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