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Paperback Book
September, 2000
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Banyen's Description: 

One of the classics of 20th century literature now often included in high school and college courses, Siddhartha chronicles the spiritual evolution of a man living in India at the time of the Buddha. Filled with timeless truths and told so beautifully with images that burn deep into your being, Hesse’s novel speaks powerfully to every generation of spiritual seekers.

Here is a fresh translation of Siddhartha that offers greater authenticity than any other translation—while still preserving the unique beauty of the original prose. While this will stand as surely the most faithful, readable, and philosophically coherent translation available (the translator’s own years of Buddhist meditation practice shine through, helping him grasp Hesse’s philosophical and spiritual beliefs with greater subtlety and clarity), the main point is this is a truly great story. You may have read it in another translation before, but ladies and gents, read this one. It will move you deeply.

Long he sat and looked at her dead face. For a long time he looked at her mouth, her old tired mouth with its shrunken lips, and he remembered that once in the springtime of his years he had compared that mouth to a fig freshly broken open. He sat for a long time contemplating the pallid face, the tired wrinkles, filling himself with the sight. He saw his own face reposing that way, just as white, just as lifeless; and at the same time he saw his face and her face when young, with the red lips, the burning eyes; and the feeling of presence and simultaneity pervaded him completely, a feeling of eternity. He felt profoundly at that moment, more profoundly than ever, the indestructibility of life, the eternity of every instant.

Publisher’s Description: 

This classic of twentieth-century literature chronicles the spiritual evolution of a man living in India at the time of the Buddhaa spiritual journey that has inspired generations of readers. Here is a fresh translation from Sherab Chdzin Kohn, a gifted translator and longtime student of Buddhism and Eastern philosophy. Kohn's flowing, poetic translation conveys the philosophical and spiritual nuances of Hesse's text, paying special attention to the qualities of meditation experience. This edition also includes an introduction exploring Hesse's own spiritual journey as evidenced in his journals and personal letters.This new translation of this classic tale-from an outstanding translator and long-time student of Buddhism-promises to be the most readable and philosophically coherent translation yet. Kohn has translated numerous works from German, specializing in books on Buddhism, psychology, and philosophy. He is especially keen when it comes to translating the fine nuances of the texture and power of meditative experience in Hesse’s writing.

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