Herman Hesse

Herman Hesse

Hermann Karl Hesse (2 July 1877 – 9 August 1962) was a German-born Swiss poet, novelist, and painter. His best-known works include Demian, Steppenwolf, Siddhartha, and The Glass Bead Game, each of which explores an individual's search for authenticity, self-knowledge and spirituality. In 1946, he received the Nobel Prize in Literature.

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Now true humor begins when a man ceases to take himself seriously.

Siddhartha stopped fighting his fate this very hour, and he stopped suffering.

Within you, there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat at anytime and be yourself.

The opposite of every truth is just as true.

Madness, in a higher sense, is the beginning of all wisdom.

Writing is good, thinking is better. Cleverness is good, patience is better.

You knew all along that your sanctioned world was only half the world, and you tried to suppress the other half the same way the priests and teachers do. You won't succeed. No one succeeds in this once he has begun to think.

Everyone can perform magic, everyone can reach his goals, if he is able to think, if he is able to wait, if he is able to fast.

An enlightened man had but one duty - to seek the way to himself, to reach inner certainty, to grope his way forward, no matter where it led.

The man of power is ruined by power, the man of money by money, the submissive man by subservience, the pleasure seeker by pleasure.

The world is not imperfect or slowly evolving along a path to perfection. No, it is perfect at every moment, every sin already carries grace in it.

I do want more. I am not content with being happy. I was not made for it. It is not my destiny. My destiny is the opposite.

I call that man awake who, with conscious knowledge and understanding, can perceive the deep unreasoning powers in his soul, his whole innermost strength, desire and weakness, and knows how to reckon with himself.

It seems to me, Govinda, that love is the most important thing in the world.

One can beg, buy, be presented with and find love in the streets, but it can never be stolen.

I realize today that nothing in the world is more distasteful to a man than to take the path that leads to himself.

Those who direct the maximum force of their desires toward the center, toward true being, toward perfection, seem quieter than the passionate souls because the flame of their fervor cannot always be seen.

Not in his speech, not in his thoughts, I see his greatness only in his actions, in his life.

He had loved and had found himself. But most people love to lose themselves.

You know quite well, deep within you, that there is only a single magic, a single power, a single salvation... and that is called loving. 

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