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Summary

Hermann Hesse’s classic novel Siddhartha, takes place in ancient India around the time of the Buddha (6th century BC). Siddhartha and his companion Govinda set out in search of enlightenment. Siddhartha goes through a series of changes and realizations as he attempts to achieve this goal. Siddhartha joins the ascetics, visits Gotama, embraces his earthly desires, and finally communes with nature, all in an attempt to attain Nirvana. The novel shows how the path to enlightenment cannot be conferred to another person because it is different for everyone and will likely never be achieved simply by listening to or obeying an enlightened one. Words and teachings may describe the truth but are not the Truth itself; being concepts, they trap you, since enlightenment means release from concepts.

Public Domain (P)2008 Alpha DVD LLC

What listeners say about Siddhartha

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Harish Bhimani brings the text alive

Where does Siddhartha rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is an important book when thinking about the meaning of life. Seeing Siddhartha's journey through life and its different phases, and reflecting on one's own life, make listening to the audiobook a moving experience.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Siddhartha?

The profundity of statements such as "soft is stronger than hard. Water is stronger than rock."

What does Harish Bhimani bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

He has a lovely warm voice.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Without giving too much away, the second meeting of Siddhartha and Kamala was very moving.

Any additional comments?

It took a little time to get into it, but it was well worth it. You have to get used to the cadence of the writing, and the style is at times slightly repetitive. But this is all done for a good reason related to the key themes of the book. The ideas in this book will resonate with you. I will be listening to this again in the future.

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Overall

Excellent for all who are searching the inner self. Masterpiece of a genius! Enjoy it

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Potent & Thought provoking read!

Quite sublime listen throught concepts that should make you reevaluate how we live in modern society. I will go throught it at least once more as it requires concentration in order to make the most of it. The narrator's voice is just sublime.

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Amazing!

Listened to in one sitting. Genius and totally enthralling from start to finish. Highly recommended.

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Timeless Classic with excellent narrator.

Siddthartha is a journey of self-discovery set in ancient India. However the theme is timeless.
It's NOT Buddha's story even though several covers show the picture of the Buddha. Maybe Hermann Hesse should have used some other name for the title character to avoid confusion.
The story of Sidhartha goes through 4 Ashrama's (stages) of person's life - Bramhacharya (Student), Grihastha (Household), Vanaprastha (Retirement) and Sanyas (Renunciation). It also touches the 4 Purusharthas (Aspects of one's life) viz. Dharma (difficult to translate but closer word is duty), Artha (money or work to earn it), Kama (pleasure - particularly sensual) , Moksha (enlightenment).
The narrator, Mr. Bhimani has immaculate pronunciations of Sanskrit words and it's pleasure to listen them.
The only suggestion is the editor should have paced the narration little slowly taking a time for the listener time to get the sinking of the ideas.
Apart from this, I would highly recommend the audio book to anyone who wants to go deeper and beyond the ephemeral.

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Interesting story but overrated

Worth a listen - follows a story of Siddhartha on his path to enlightenment. Book has seeds of spiritual knowledge but nothing new/ life-changing.
Main teachings of this book could be summarised in one sentence: You won't find enlightenment by following someone else's teachings - you need to find your own path.

1 person found this helpful

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Life user manual.

My favourite book. Have read dozens of times and now listened to it many times. It never gets old, always seems to have relevance to whatevers going on in ones life. A beautiful summation of the principal of universal oneness,.

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Not what I was expecting

I was expecting the story of The Buddha. This wasn't it. kind of boring

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Very disappointing

The only reason I downloaded this because I had read a review where said it had completely changed their life. I have read a lot of mindfulness literature and some basic Buddhism and so thought it might be worth 4 hours of my life. It was not. It was Incredibly dreary and pointless with some very awkward English.

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Terrible narration - pick a different version.

It's almost impossible to get into the story with this narrator. do yourself a favour and pic a different version of the audiobook.

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  • Viviane
  • 17-10-11

Sounds rushed

I wanted to listen to Siddharta, because I remember reading it many years ago with great joy. Hermann Hesse being one of the great names that one simply must read or hear this was sure to be a winner. But the narrator does not seem to be well enough suited to the text. I do really like Harish Bhimani's accent, yet, overall I can't seem to keep up with the meaning of each sentence. Before I have fully absorbed it, the narrator has already finished the next sentence. Herman Hesse writes with such simplicity that each phrase needs time to shine in its own meaning. The sheer speed of the narration does not give the listener much time for absorbing the sentence, and the narration suffers from it.

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Sara R.
  • 10-08-10

less than

This was less than I hoped it would be. I thought that the reader was flat, this could simply be my interpretation of him trying to bring a tone of abiding respect to the subject at hand.
It would be a hard job to give life to a book that is an internal reflection. Still, I found the reader made it a tad dreary. I liked the print version of the book very much, this rendition left it without color.

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  • Erica L. Krayer M.
  • 31-03-15

Beautiful and wise beyond words.

Exceptional narrator! I loved it.
It is an interesting addition with some background traditional Indian music.
I highly recommend it.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Ranjit
  • 22-03-10

I have listened again and again

Quite simply this is a great book and a great telling. The message and its ethos are profound and told simply.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Ofer Reichman
  • 15-02-22

Excellent listening after (before?) Alan Watts

Listened to this after listening to a lot of Alan Watts seems to have been an excellent decision.

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  • sergio
  • 15-07-16

Beautiful wisdom

It's nice that every time I get back to this book I get something new and useful

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  • Gaylon Vorwaller
  • 17-05-15

Hesse is a genius

Hesse synthesizes the best of Eastern teaching in a moving and intimate story of the path of life and realization.