Change Your World-NOT your Body

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Dare to be Different: Hermann Hesse

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"Ah, but it is hard to find this track of the divine in the midst of this life we lead, in the besotted humdrum age of spiritual blindless, with its architecture, its business, its politics, its men! How could I fail to be a lone wolf, and an uncouth hermit, and as I did not share one of its aims nor understand one of its pleasures? I cannot remain for long in either theater or picture-house. I can scarcely read a paper, seldom a modern book. I cannot understand what pleasures and joys they are that drive people to the overcrowded railways and hotels, into the packed cafés with the suffocating and oppressive music, to the Bars and variety entertainments, to World Exhibitions, to the Corsos. I cannot understand nor share these joys, though they are within my reach, for which thousands of others strive. On the other hand, what happens to me in my rare hours of joy, what for me is bliss and life and ecstacy and exaltation, the world in general seeks at most in imagination; in life it finds it absurd. And in fact, if the world is right, if this music of the cafés, these mass enjoyments and these Americanised men who are pleased with so little are right, then I am wrong, I am crazy. I am in truth the Steppenwolf that I often call myself; the beast astray who finds neither home nor joy nor nourishment in a world that is strange and incomprehensible to him." (Hermann Hesse-Steppenwolf)

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1 comment:

  1. I wonder why noone commented on that one... The Steppenwolf - Haller - seemed to be questioning, cynical, tired to me when I read the book. Now I see he might be a character that is simply not interested in the mainstream.
    I like your posts about Bachmann and Hesse.

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