Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Siddartha - 4 Stars

Now, I know you must be wondering about my reading hiatus. I have to say that I moved offices for work in November and now that we're located in midtown and I walk to work, I have found that I have to make time for reading! It's been tough given the time of year, but have no fear I am reading. Just a very long book that you'll hear about soon.

In the meantime I took a break from that book to read....

Siddartha, Herman Hesse

This was our December book group and I have to say I was very excited to read it because I had never read Herman Hesse before, and I love trying new authors and new books!

Siddartha is really considered an Indic Poem. It is short, only 118 pages and it follows the life of the main character, Siddartha.

When the book/poem begins Siddartha is a boy and is being brought up in a very religious family. He is seeking the "path of the paths" as he refers to it, so he leaves home to go live in the forest with monks/priests. After three years he decides to find and follow the "exalted one" and after meeting him realizes that he has to follow his gut and experience life for himself as opposed to learning about it through others teachings. Thus, he heads out on his own and has many different experiences, all the while looking for the "path of the paths".

It is one of those books that discusses the meaning of ones life, the way in which one lives ones life and the true purpose of it all.

The book group felt lukewarm about it. I personally found it to be a very peaceful read that gave me perspective during this time of year. It did however provide a good discussion, which when it comes to book group is just as imporant as perhaps enjoying the book itself. The impression I've gotten from the reader reviews is that it is something you read at different points in your life, because depending on where you are you might take different lessons from it. However, if these kind of books aren't your thing I would probably just pass on it!

I'll probably read it again some years down the road. I'd also like to pick up other books by Herman Hesse just to compare.

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