Customer Reviews for

Siddhartha (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 146 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Posted July 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    2nd time around

    I had to read this book for a literature class in high school. Lately, I've been returning to some of my high school assignment books to see how they read now that I'm older and in a different mind-set. The first time I read this, I wouldn't say that I hated it, just rather indifferent to it. I just re-read it and......wow! What a great story about the search for wisdom and enlightenment. It makes the very valid point that while knowledge can be taught from one person to another, wisdom simply cannot. It is acquired through one's own experiences. No truer words were ever spoken and I think it is a point that not everyone recognizes.
    A wonderful and relatively easy reader, Siddhartha contains messages that can be appreciated by anyone who questions the hardships and meaning of life.

    23 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 1, 2008

    The most beautiful book I've ever read.

    This book is short, but packed with so much power. Its prose is simple, but it's what's written between the lines that is so thought provoking. I would actually say that this book changed my life every time I am going through a rough time, I think back to Siddhartha and I'm calmed a bit. Pure wisdom.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2012

    Excellent read

    Thought provoking and profoundly moving. I really loved the language and the subtle and nuanced writing. Great to read and reread

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 25, 2013

    A quick but powerful read

    This is not a long book, but you'll read every word, and many paragraphs twice. It's filled with insight, drama and high emotion. Tons of introduction before and notes after to set up the story and author, then explain references. A true "Classic."

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 21, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    Brilliant Vision of Life

    This book-length tale may be the finest of its kind. It's a book about life, about finding out how to live it properly.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 27, 2012

    Highly Recommended

    This book is about a man's journey seeking the ultimate truth. For me, three points stand out. First, the journey is long and hard. It takes a life time to reach. Second, it is hard for everyone, even those who are supposed to be superior in spirituality. Third, humbleness and love for all are the necessary conditions for achieving that ultimate goal.

    It is a book of great inspiration. For anyone who is interested in spirituality, this book is a must read.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2007

    A guidebook for spiritual awakening

    I've loved this book ever since I first came upon it in high school. It is a thoroughly lyrical work that is at once strange and comforting. I've read it very slowly at least four times, almost meditating with each page on the depths of another soul's struggle for enlightenment. It is one of those rare books that not only touches your soul but leaves you changed and for the better afterwards. I'd recommend everyone with an open heart to read it or to re-read it again.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2012

    One of the most enlightening stories ever written. A very intros

    One of the most enlightening stories ever written. A very introspective
    book that can make one re evaluate ones own self

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 24, 2011

    AP World History Review: a description of my opinion of the book

    "Siddhartha" was a great book. My favorite part about this book is how the author used symbolism. The author used symbolism to express greater thoughts. An example of this is the river that Siddhartha reflects in his own life. Siddhartha learns to understand through the rivers' "om". Om is a representation of meditation and when Siddhartha finds om in the river then he finds unity in his self. The river also represents the flowing of Siddhartha's life. The river is always moving and doesn't stop for anything, like life. Another example is the songbird. When Siddhartha travels to the sinful city of Samsara, he meets Kamala. Kamala has a rare song bird that she keeps caged up. After 20 years, Siddhartha has a dream that the song bird dies and sees it as his inner self dieing. He decides to leave the city. After he leaves, Kamala sets the bird free because she is heart broken. After leaving and being away for awhile, Siddhartha realizes that the "song bird" within his self is still alive. After seeing the affect that symbolism had on the book, I think the author completed his purpose well. The authors' purpose was to show how the world altered the mind of Siddhartha. The author expresses this by symbolism and conflict. Throughout the book Siddhartha is going through different kinds of conflict, internal and external. By going through different kinds of conflict, Siddhartha realizes the struggles within himself and the world. After realizing how difficult the world is, Siddhartha realizes that he must make himself happy to reach Nirvana. He must keep himself happy by moving on and never stopping or allowing someone to stop him in his path, like the river. He realizes that he must be free and not have anyone hold him back, like the songbird in the cage. This book was a good book and I would recommend it to anyone who is not just learning about the life of Siddhartha, but to anyone who is learning about life itself.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 7, 2013

    Okay

    Long winded...its about lifes lessons

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2012

    Great Read!

    I really didnt expect to like this book so much, but it is so worth it! So much meaning! For all you people who say it is boring, you people need to take a deeper look inside yourselves.

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  • Posted October 21, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Not just for buddhas

    There aren't many books that beckon a second or third reading. Siddhartha has to be read again and again, partially because it's a good book, but mostly because its lessons are so easy to forget. If I told you that the book's main teaching is 'Go with the flow', that would be a vast oversimplification, but it wouldn't be too far off the mark. I've seen it compared to 'Don't Worry, Be Happy'. Now that makes me take offense. Probably the best analogy to Hesse's book comes from the movie Van Wilder, of all things. The protagonist in that awful story says: 'Worrying is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it doesn't get you anywhere.'

    Incredibly, that movie, surely without knowing it, offers both a summation and a critique of Siddhartha. Hesse's protagonist learns and therefore advises us not to let even major problems get to us. However, Hesse's solution seems to be to let go of materialism and many worldly (secular) values, in return for mental and emotional satisfaction. I'm not sure that's the best way to go. It seems a bit like the flip side of the rocking chair problem. Worrying may indeed get us nowhere, but letting go of a significant part of our hold on the world probably wouldn't get us any further. After all, as satisfied as our minds may be without material desires, they are themselves made of material, and in reading one of the few passages where the Bible got it right, we find that we will return to the dust of the earth, with or without nirvana, salvation, or any other kind of 'spiritual' satisfaction.

    There is great value to be had from this book, though, and within the material world (the only world) at that. Tempering our worries with perspective and context is a valuable lesson that can be teased from this book, and it's also easy to forget, making return trips to Siddhartha worth it, despite the infinite spiral of unanswerable questions it so easily draws from us.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2011

    Spiritual adventure.

    One of my top 5 favorite books of all time.

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  • Posted February 20, 2011

    very good

    The opening is one of the best in all of literature... the story is a simple and rich one...and there is a lot to get you thinking for weeks after you've read it.

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  • Posted May 8, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    One of my absolute favorites

    This book was so incredible. It was a feel good book and I give it 5 stars across the board. Truly classic writing style and the message/topic of the book is so interesting and inspirational. This is one of my favorites and I will probably read it many more times in my life. It's a pretty short book. But the short length doesn't matter because it's so good. Penguin Deluxe Classic editions are also really well made. I love this copy sitting on my bookshelf.

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  • Posted April 29, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Thought Provoking

    If you have ever dwealt on the meaning of life, this book is definitely a must-read. The story of Siddhartha takes you through the intellectual journey of a youth searching for Nirvana. As the boy matures throughout the book, his understanding and attitude towards life undergo sharp transitions that continually build on each other. By the end, the reader witnesses a full realization of world value and meaning that perhaps only a few will truly grasp.

    I read this book once in high school and now again in my mid-20's, and it is amazing how my interpretation of this wonderful novel has changed so dramatically!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2010

    supurb

    inspiring, makes you think about life and the choices that you make, deffinate read

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  • Posted January 15, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Thought-provoking

    Siddhartha, son of a Brahman, is on a quest to find the meaning of life. We follow him as he struggles on through his journey, through many different life experiences. He is on a spiritual journey to find out for himself who he really is. Along the way he meets rich people, poor people, holy people, and becomes part of their world for a short time. Through his many encounters, he learns much more about himself and the world, but for a long time he is still not satisfied and still feels a deep need to strive for more and to search for something elusive.
    I think this book is relevant to everyone, because although it is telling the tale of a spiritual and religious man, it is also a tale about life and how our life experiences make us who we are. Many of Siddhartha's feelings and thoughts are common to us all as we make our way along the road of our own lives. This book reaffirms the fact that in the end we are all the same, and someone who has stayed in the same place all their life can be as wise as someone who has spent his life travelling on a long search for the truth. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. Its message appears to be that we are all the same and all of our life experiences whether good or bad, are necessary for us to find ourselves, and even though everyone will go through different things, we are all bonded by the fact that we are on the same journey. I believe everyone who reads this book will be touched in some way by the simple and poignant words. I would recommend this to everyone, it's a very enlightening and though-provoking read.

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  • Posted September 5, 2009

    siddhartha review

    very good book. would recommend it to anyone who hasn't read it.

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  • Posted March 11, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Excellent book. A worthwhile read.

    Hermann Hesse's Siddhartha is a magnificent book that is excellently written. It was assigned to me in my first year of high school. I was not attracted to the book initially. Its cover and title did not stand out. I read it anyways. I read daily the assigned chapters, but its content captivated me. I could not tear my eyes away from the pages. I felt enthralled to have such a good book for obligatory reading because I don't read much on my own.

    The story line is not about the Buddha as some would think from the title. Though the main character and the Buddha are contemporaries, Siddhartha, is not a follower of Buddha. The story revolves around the young man Siddhartha that sets on a spiritual journey seeking enlightenment and understanding of the world. His goal is spiritual but his journey takes him physically to diverse places in India, his homeland.

    The imagery in this book is wonderful. Having India as a background the adjectives are never lacking and provide rich images of beautiful natural landscapes and elegant buildings. I felt like if I was there, watching the river or sitting under the mango tree. This book can transport you like a well-done movie. The setting is not very important but it adds to the book by making it more interesting.

    Analysis of this book always seems to pop up. It is worthy of it and some reflection is needed as well. The plot is vibrant and its characters realistic. It contains symbolisms, representations and varied characters. All this observant detail makes you wonder how did a German-Swiss author write this. It also is one of his most publicly acclaimed and known books. My main reason of liking the book and giving it the five complete stars is that it teaches you a life lesson, a feat few books can boast.

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