Brenda Cooper

Reading Recommendation: Siddhartha, by Hermann Hesse

Sometimes old favorites need to be revisited.  I won’t tell you how long ago I first read Siddhartha, but it was published in 1922, which is before I was published.

At any rate, I chose to listen to it on my way down to Orycon (the drive is from Seattle to Portland, or 3 hours and change) and back.  I think partly out of yearning for something beloved and familiar, even though I haven’t read or heard it in a decade and maybe for two.

I’m pretty sure this is my third time through this book, and that each time it has seemed even more relevant to my life than the time before.  This time, the insight is that Siddhartha chose so many different paths to walk, with nearly complete re-inventions all along the way.  It seems to me that we do that in modern life.  I have been three or four different careers by now, and have spent long years celibate and long years not, and chosen different teachers at different times in my life.

It reminds me how classic fiction resonates as true to the human condition and transcends time.