Hermann Hesse Siddhartha

ISBN 13: 9781570629709

Siddhartha

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A classic of twentieth-century literature chronicles the spiritual evolution of a man living in India at the time of the Buddha—a spiritual journey that has inspired generations of readers. We are invited along on Siddhartha's journey experiencing his highs, lows, loves, and disappointments along the way. Always insightful and inspiring, Hesse begins the novel by showing us the life of a brahmin's son. Handsome, well-loved, and growing increasingly dissatisfied with the life expected of him, Siddhartha sets out on his journey, not realizing that he is fulfilling the prophesies proclaimed at his birth.

Siddhartha blends in with the world, showing the reader the beauty and intricacies of the mind, nature, and his experience on the path to enlightenment. Sherab Chödzin Kohn's flowing, poetic translation conveys the philosophical and spiritual nuances of Hesse's text, paying special attention to the qualities of meditative experience.

The Shambhala Library is a series of exquisitely designed and produced cloth editions of the world's spiritual and literary classics, both ancient and modern. Perfect for collecting or as gifts, each volume features a sewn binding, decorative endsheets, and a ribbon marker—in a delightful-to-hold 4 ¼ x 6 ¾ trim size.

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Review:

In the shade of a banyan tree, a grizzled ferryman sits listening to the river. Some say he's a sage. He was once a wandering shramana and, briefly, like thousands of others, he followed Gotama the Buddha, enraptured by his sermons. But this man, Siddhartha, was not a follower of any but his own soul. Born the son of a Brahmin, Siddhartha was blessed in appearance, intelligence, and charisma. In order to find meaning in life, he discarded his promising future for the life of a wandering ascetic. Still, true happiness evaded him. Then a life of pleasure and titillation merely eroded away his spiritual gains until he was just like all the other "child people," dragged around by his desires. Like Hermann Hesse's other creations of struggling young men, Siddhartha has a good dose of European angst and stubborn individualism. His final epiphany challenges both the Buddhist and the Hindu ideals of enlightenment. Neither a practitioner nor a devotee, neither meditating nor reciting, Siddhartha comes to blend in with the world, resonating with the rhythms of nature, bending the reader's ear down to hear answers from the river. In this translation Sherab Chodzin Kohn captures the slow, spare lyricism of Siddhartha's search, putting her version on par with Hilda Rosner's standard edition. --Brian Bruya

From the Publisher:

This book is perfect for AP classes and is often selected for inclusion on the AP exam. The notes, reading pointers, and vocabulary in this addition will also help students at a lower reading level get the most out of these classics.

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