A human being becomes many things throughout the unfoldment of their path in life. An infinite number of permutations and possibilities await every new life as it embarks upon its quest. We are each the hero of our own portion of this journey, both blessed and cursed to observe this whirling cascade from the single, isolated perspective of human consciousness.
Hermann Hesse’s Siddhartha is a tale of such an observer. Set in the far reaches of northern India, in the foothills of the Nepalese Himalayas and in the time of the Gautama Buddha, Siddhartha follows the journey of a young boy who yearns after the higher thoughts and hidden truths of human life. Born into the prestigious household of a Brahmin, a wise teacher of the Vedas, Siddhartha quickly becomes dissatisfied with religious dogma as he reaches adolescent maturity and abandons the life-path set before him by his father to join the order of wandering ascetics known as the Samanas.
Eschewing all forms of materialism, Siddhartha flagellates the physical form and all of the pleasures associated with it in the most fervent display of material denial — asceticism itself becoming only another dogma by which he is blinded. It is only by an encounter with Gotama Buddha, and a rejection of the discipleship of certainty and conviction in favor of the unpredictability of freedom, that Siddhartha is set on a winding road that leads him through the myriad experiences of life.Title Page
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