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Thread: Hesse's philosophy, life and what's beyond

  1. #1
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    Hesse's philosophy, life and what's beyond

    I want to take a deeper look at Hesse’s books.

    I don’t mean the usual kind of view “ I read the Steppenwolf as I was a teen and I think it describes marvoysly problems of the young. Now when I’m 30 it doesn’t interest me a bit and I wonder who I was such a compliner back then.”

    What is the background of Hesse’s work?
    Hesse’s earlier books like Demian and Steppenwolf are Nietzsche’s philosophy brought alive. Thay say that Nietzsche’s great opponent was his father (every existentialist has his inner opponent). Who is Hesse’s opponent? Who is his ghost?

    My father left me as I was 8. My mother has an mental illness called manic depression. It’s the same illness that Hesse had. It very well might be that I am going to have it too or that I even have it already in some early stage.

    Hesse’s books are his dremas written down. They are also my dreams. Constantly Hesse seeks a leader for himself and a friend as I seek father figure for me.

    Hesse ended up with some sort of peace. He had his Easter culture and Buddhism and his own philosophy..

    Have you, my fellow readers come up with your own philosophy and what kind of is it? What kind of was your first acquaintance with Hesse? Is your life and background any similar to Hesse’s? How have you coped?

    I think that all the writers we have in the world the Hesse’s readers might be the most like minded with me and it’s interesting to see if there is any thruth about it.

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    Torchbearer Demian's Avatar
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    Abraxas and Hermann

    When Hesse was a young man he underwent psychoanalysis (supposedly at the hands of Jung himself) in a sanitorium in Switzerland. This was, in my mind, beside his thirst for all things Eastern, probably his first real encounter with Gnosticism. Jung drew upon the ideas of the Gnostics in many areas, most notably in his own interpretation of dreams; like the overwhelming power of the archtype and the drawing back of the veil of time to arrive at both the primal and the cosmic potential of man. He was more of a mystic than a scientist. In this same sense I see Hesse's lyrical writing as an emmanation of this same sort of mysticism. Hesse was described by one scholar as the foremost German authority on Gnosticism in his day. For a wonderful introduction to Gnosticism you should pick up a book by Elaine Pagels such as The Gnostic Gospels or Adam, Eve and the Serpent. Besides his Gnostic roots, Hesse was also a product of the German Rennaissance. He was growing up as the movement was nearly over, in that short period from Schiller straight down to the fascist fervour of Hitler's Germany (by then he was pas middle age) that saw the end of German idealism and intellectual prowess. Hence the gloomy realism of Steppenwolf became the swan song of the dreamy idealist Sinclair a la Demian. If you come across the poetry of Goethe, give it a shot. As Steppenwolf makes clear, he was another pillar of youth for young Hermann.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sophy_ View Post
    I want to take a deeper look at Hesse’s books.
    How deep?
    We might think that we understand, but do we?

    Hesse’s philosophy is pure and clean. Alive, even though it was written relatively long time ago. It’s easy to understand but it is wise. I don’t know much about his life. I’ve read couple of his books and experienced some similar stages. Hi is a tender lover, a proud man and soulful poet. I always recommend his work.

  4. #4
    Hello Everyone--Based on Sophy's question and the responses it generated, I chose to join this group and thread.

    Today, the day of the Full Moon eclipse, I came across Hermann Hesse's astrological birthchart. It had deep resonance with me. I have been reading of him at some sites and feel it is time to take another look at his work, as I have learned about Hesse the human being and his own journeys, which strike a chord within me.

    I am not a fan of Hesse's (yet). When I was in school during the 1960s-70s, it was quite the "fashion" to read _Siddhartha_ and _Steppenwolf_ and, for some, may have been required reading for a literature class. Many upper white, middle class kids, disillusioned with their culture, sought refuge in Hesse's works. As I have never been one to "follow the pack",(I have a innate distaste for "shoulds"), I naturally did not gravitate toward Hesse's works. But today's discoveries have whetted my interest.

    Tomorrow, I will have access to three of his books: _Journey to the East_,
    _The Glass Bead_ and _Demian_. I hope to read them over the next several weeks and see if the internal resonance continues.

    Namaste and Peace,
    bursting_daisy

  5. #5
    Ludmila607
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    Hesse s Books

    Hesse identified the vicious and decadence of the post industrial European society.He was some kind of visionary that suffer from homesick , the homesick of a man raised up on straight and firm religious paramenters who have to face the ending of all human values infrot of war, racism, social changing...he could see behind the horizon the world where we live now.
    And he was homesick and trying to find new spiritual answers to himself and the world.Will the new world bring benefits to human kind?
    Or will bring pain,wars, ujustice,violence, mass stupidity??
    He is writing is simple, easy , calm.He is far from being double dicoursed or overelaborated.He wrote from the perspective of any man who uses his brain and his heart to adecuate a world who moves forward to a mysteriuos destiny.Was e a dreppresed man?Who s not?
    I think we should be reading more Hesse trying to brig him back to our mind and to teen ager minds.They are in thirst!
    I love Mi CREDO.(my Belief)

  6. #6
    Haribol Acharya blazeofglory's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sophy_ View Post
    I want to take a deeper look at Hesse’s books.

    I don’t mean the usual kind of view “ I read the Steppenwolf as I was a teen and I think it describes marvoysly problems of the young. Now when I’m 30 it doesn’t interest me a bit and I wonder who I was such a compliner back then.”

    What is the background of Hesse’s work?
    Hesse’s earlier books like Demian and Steppenwolf are Nietzsche’s philosophy brought alive. Thay say that Nietzsche’s great opponent was his father (every existentialist has his inner opponent). Who is Hesse’s opponent? Who is his ghost?

    My father left me as I was 8. My mother has an mental illness called manic depression. It’s the same illness that Hesse had. It very well might be that I am going to have it too or that I even have it already in some early stage.

    Hesse’s books are his dremas written down. They are also my dreams. Constantly Hesse seeks a leader for himself and a friend as I seek father figure for me.

    Hesse ended up with some sort of peace. He had his Easter culture and Buddhism and his own philosophy..

    Have you, my fellow readers come up with your own philosophy and what kind of is it? What kind of was your first acquaintance with Hesse? Is your life and background any similar to Hesse’s? How have you coped?

    I think that all the writers we have in the world the Hesse’s readers might be the most like minded with me and it’s interesting to see if there is any thruth about it.
    Of course I liked the style of Hesse, but I have little to say about the idea or philosophy he lived with. Does he have a message or revelation?

    “Those who seek to satisfy the mind of man by hampering it with ceremonies and music and affecting charity and devotion have lost their original nature””

    “If water derives lucidity from stillness, how much more the faculties of the mind! The mind of the sage, being in repose, becomes the mirror of the universe, the speculum of all creation.

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    Being a young reader, I was given a deeper understanding of life and it's struggles from Hesse's novels. Siddhartha and Steppenwolf moved me and I realized then that you can only follow the paths of others for so long before you have to take your own road.

    I haven't taken the time to look at his life and relate it to his work, however it seems from reading the comments of others that his writing reflects his own life and that is something that I feel only wise authors can do. Being seventeen years old makes me feel foolish for adopting his thoughts and beliefs so quickly, but they make sense to me and his writing has given me inspiration.

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    Hi

    Hi I am a new member to the forum .
    I have been re-reading Hesse's work for the past five years ,that started with Siddhartha . Personally I think , his philosophy is about how to live completely fully and attain the here-after (i f exists ; if it does not ,thats ok ,as he seem to say through his works ) .To that extent, he forwards simplicity in living and advocated to be in tune with nature paying attention to little joys , which modernization won't allow one to consider. His development from youth to old age ,through adulthood is reflected in each of his novels . Each novel assumes a complete form as a transformation from nothingness to enlightenment.

    Recently I was reading his 'My beliefs : essays on life and art ' ,and my previous analysis of his work ,seem to agree with his personal opinions in the book.

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    In trying to learn German, I've reread some Hesse. I have to say I find his German old fashioned and dense - tough going. But I read the following, was struck by it enough to seek the translation, and I think it's as good a single sentence summation of his philosophy as I've found (I think this is from Demian):

    But each person is not only himself; he is also the unique, very special point, important and noteworthy in every instance, where the phenomena of the world meet, once only and never again in the same way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sophy_ View Post
    I want to take a deeper look at Hesse’s books.

    I don’t mean the usual kind of view “ I read the Steppenwolf as I was a teen and I think it describes marvoysly problems of the young. Now when I’m 30 it doesn’t interest me a bit and I wonder who I was such a compliner back then.”
    I don't think that's it at all--Hesse doesn't set out to appeal to one type of person, or address the problems faced by one particular group. Adolescence is widely regarded as a conventional rite of passage, but Hesse's characters usually seek to break from convention entirely in favor of coming to terms with the self; he chronicles the individual's struggle to "find" himself, whether young and old.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevets View Post
    In trying to learn German, I've reread some Hesse. I have to say I find his German old fashioned and dense - tough going. But I read the following, was struck by it enough to seek the translation, and I think it's as good a single sentence summation of his philosophy as I've found (I think this is from Demian):
    also:

    we can understand each other but each of us can only interpret himself.

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