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Publisher's Summary

Siddhartha is Nobel Prize-winning author Hermann Hesse's most famous and influential work, a novel of self-exploration that will linger in your mind and spirit for a lifetime.

A young man, blessed with loving parents and a safe home in a world where want and neglect abound, leaves this haven in search of himself. He joins the Samanas, a band of wandering ascetics without possessions or earthly ties. His quest unfulfilled, he descends into a life of unbounded luxury and indulgence. Where is truth? Where will his soul find true ease? In denial? In decadence? Or in some truth far greater than himself, so simple, so close to him, yet so obvious that only clear eyes may see it?

Siddhartha reawakens questions most of us have long ceased asking ourselves and opens paths to spirituality many of us have never traveled.

Translated by Joachim Neugroschel.

©1999 Joachim Neugroschel (P)2006 Recorded Books, LLC.

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What listeners say about Siddhartha

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Very Interesting to Listen

The narrator is very expressive. The story itself
is simple but extra ordinary in the vivid descriptive passages.
For the impatient and for those curiously after the twist and turns,
it would turn out to be outright boring. But for those
in a spiritual path, it is time worth spent.

40 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent!

This presentation of one of my favorite books, is nothing short of excellent.I enjoyed listening very much. The narrators vocals were pleasantly soothing and harmonious with the the story of Sidhartha. The story is told without revision, silly soundtrack, or irritating sound effects. There is an informative lecture and commentary after the reading about Herman Hesse, and this classic tale of Sidhartha.

34 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Simple and meaningful

I liked how this went through the ups and downs of a persons life... it has hidden meanings and provokes thought and reflection in ones own life. This is a great addition to a persons collection of self help books, the meaning of life, people searching for something more. It is easy to listen too in a story book fashion. Nice change of pace from the "do this, do that" type self help books

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

a shame ...

To cut to the chase:

The narrator of this version of Siddhartha isn't one whose other work I'll be chasing down. I had hoped to be swept back to the place I landed when I first read the book (decades ago), but with this reader and a translation that struck me as anything-but-lyrical, I finished the recording hugely unsatisfied.

It's a shame that Audible offers only an abridgement of Sherab Chodzin Kohn's translation -- widely considered sensitive and poetic.

32 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The Buddhist 'Life of Brian'.

I initially thought this was a version of the life story of the Buddha (one of whose names was "Siddartha"). But it's the story of a contemporary who crosses paths with the Buddha in the story, but who carves his own path to enlightenment. It's like "The Life of Brian", but with philosophy and poetic wording rather than that great Monty Python humour.

I found the story of Siddharta compelling, poetic at times, and well-narrated. I was not completely convinced by Sid's philosophy ultimately, but I still really enjoyed the story. I would have docked the story one star for it's philosophical conclusions, but that that didn't seem justified.

So, I highly recommend the book for its twisty-turny story, the lyrical writing, and the interestng ideas it sets out. Don't worry about it if you're exactly not on all fours with Sid's conclusions by the end. The narration is really excellent as well.

PS: You will need some basic info about Buddhism though. I'm no expert, but here goes. The most important thing is that the goal of the religion is to meditate long and hard until you finally achieve the ultimate truth of the universe at which point you're on your way to Nirvana. If you fail, you are reincarnated and get another chance. And know that Brahmans are the the priest/upper class of that society.

17 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Revisiting Siddhartha

Well worth it after half a century. Hesse is enjoyable to revisit so long after reading him in college.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

I don't get it.

What did you like best about Siddhartha? What did you like least?

In short, I don't understand why this is a classic and so loved by others. It's a about 3 hours too long and it didn't tell me anything new or even anything old in a new way. I guess at the time this book was written it may have been unique and thought provoking . Given the amount of information available today about spirituality of all kinds, this made me wonder when it was going to give me that I've-never-thought-of-it-that-way moment. It never happened.

I normally like mystery/thrillers but I have enjoyed other books in this and other genres and wasn't expecting action and adventure - but this book, particularly the first part, was a little too much pontification by a man who comes across as a little arrogant. Perhaps it was the narrators tone and not the words giving me this impression so reading may be different than listening. Having said that, the narrator was expressive and I did like him overall.

Would you ever listen to anything by Hermann Hesse again?

Probably not.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

no

19 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A return

The first time I read this book I was about 19 or 20. It was my favorite book then as it is now at 52. I can so relate to it on many different levels,ls . I would suggest that anyone on an inward path read this book. Even to those that are not. The narration is excellent.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Well told and captivating

Excellent book that has piqued my interest in Buddhism and the teachings of the Buddha. Purchased just by chance from a recommendation.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A truly accessable masterpiece about life

Hesse shows that the deepest and most contemplative works don't have to be inaccessible.

He provides both a great introduction and criticism of the teachings of Buddha.