Julie Decker's Reviews > Siddhartha

Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
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Siddhartha knows there is more to life than what he has learned in his father's house, so he ventures out with his friend Govinda to quest for enlightenment. He spends years as a penniless, homeless beggar; he meets the Buddha and leaves his friend's side; he becomes a rich man and knows love; he learns about despair firsthand. When he learns the secrets of the river and becomes a ferryman, and has contact with the son he didn't know he had, he learns of loss, truth, and what he can experience from life on Earth. But most importantly, he understands he cannot attain enlightenment from following someone else's established truth or path. He has to find his own way.

This held my attention, had some beautiful moments, and made sense throughout; one part was especially moving (though I won't say what). I enjoyed that the book showed Siddhartha's perspectives evolving by actively trying different styles of life and leaving them behind when he could learn no more, and I liked that the revelations in it were experiential, not based on written dogma meant to be digested and regurgitated. I didn't find it too personally meaningful, but it was worth reading.

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Reading Progress

April 22, 2014 – Shelved
April 22, 2014 – Shelved as: to-read
October 27, 2018 – Started Reading
November 9, 2018 – Finished Reading

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