How Siddhartha Enlightened My Way

The classic novel Siddhartha was written by Hermann Hesse and published in 1922. However, I must say reading Siddhartha was not just reading a book. It connotes a lifetime experience of searching for my soul and myself as well. Frankly, it could not be stated in words or described in sentences. It is a terrific book for all times. The writing style of the book is delicate, lyric and breathtaking. It is an absolute spiritual tale told by a third person. I had read the book in both Arabic and English. Although it is a small book with only 150 pocket size pages, the content of the book is so heavy and deep that it requires a deep thoughts and pauses once a while to catch your breath. This book has made a positive influence in my life in the last six months and continues doing so. Siddhartha affected my life in many ways: encouraged me in my journey, gave me a better view to life, and taught me to be patient and maintain positive thinking.

Is it Coincidence? It might be a coincidence that I am also in a ride to satisfy my ambitious and thirst to knowledge! IT all happened when I met a complete stranger in a bookstore back in my country; Saudi Arabia. It was just one week before my flight to USA. The stranger was an old tall man whose face is filled with peace and wisdom wrinkles. We had a quick and intelligent conversation. It ended up with him handling me Siddhartha! First, I could not fight the curiosity to start reading/eat the book like a madman, but I heard a voice whispering to my heart, “Wait until you travel to America.” Is it fate? I think so. I read Siddhartha during my first week in US. Siddhartha left his family and so did I. We began the journey together in different places for the same reason. He looked at me and said:

“My real self wanders elsewhere, far away, wanders on and on invisibly and has nothing to do with my life.”

This inspired me the most, and encouraged me in my own trip. It is not just about finding the self or spiritual inclination. It stopped me from regretting that I quit my fine job and left my country to obtain more education, more me! It showed me that I have made the right choice continuing my education, to satisfy my desire to knowledge and learning. I was too afraid of the recent experience which is traveling abroad to a country never been to and leaving my beloved family. It is quite an experience for me.

I thought books and teaching could lead minds to a better understanding to life. I thought they are ample, and enough to provide us with knowledge, but not wisdom as the wisdom’s river is experience. Well Siddhartha is not just a book, it’s a living experience. As Siddhartha story goes by all nature of experiences he encountered, he, Siddhartha, learns new things and discovers him and life. He gains more wisdom in every step. I could say the same about myself. In every challenge, in every episode, and in every step, we will have a much better understanding of ourselves and add further thoughts, knowledge ,and wisdom.

Having better insight to life and all of its challenges, and obstacles is one of the most things I learned from the book. The author tried to communicate to readers that if you could find love and peace within yourself first, then you will be able to see the goodness in everything surrounding you. I practice this right now and I never felt that much joy and happiness in my life. I found peace within me for I am making peace with every aspect of life. I found goodness inside me, so I can see it around and everywhere. It is like I have a third eye that showed me how life is fantastic and fabulous. I start appreciating life. When I walk in the streets or smoke a cigarette by the Union Lake, I took a moment to please my eyes and spirit with all the glorious things out there.

While reading the story, I reached the part where Siddhartha leaves town in a business trip to a small village. Even though he could not execute the deal, he stays there for a couple of days. When returned back, his partner became angry at him that although they lost the contract, Siddhartha wasted a few days down there, and is money in business. Siddhartha told his partner that if you go there, you will return upset and angry, while he, Siddhartha, spent time with ordinary people, made some friends, and enjoyed his time. Oh Boy! This story made me think a lot. I realized that even awful incidents could be much easier and could pass friendly if you kept a positive thinking and could see the irony behind them. Being patient, accepting the situation and dealing with circumstances to benefit from them, I have become less stressful and lost my usual temper. These characteristics helped me when I was searching for an apartment in Seattle. I stayed in a friend house for two weeks while looking for an apartment. You how looking for a place makes people stressful. I might be depressed and angry when I could not find one right away, but I waited patiently and searched with an optimistic mood because I knew that patience is the key and positive thinking is a golden ticket. Now, I am living in a wonderful apartment one minute from my school. Patience, optimistic thinking, inspiration and more understanding of my own life are in away or two has to do with the impact Siddhartha left on me. Siddhartha has changed my life. I am positive he had changed the lives of other people, too.

I believe books like Siddhartha will open minds to have a better understanding of life. They have an impact that will last forever. I learned many things from the book, and so will you.

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13 Responses to “How Siddhartha Enlightened My Way”


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