“Every man is more than just himself; he also represents the unique, the very special and always significant and remarkable point at which the world’s phenomena intersect, only once in this way and never again. That is why every man’s story is important, eternal, sacred; that is why every man, as long as he lives and fulfills the will of nature, is wondrous, and worthy of consideration.” – Hermann Hesse, Demian: The Story of Emil Sinclair’s Youth
Hermann Hesse (2 July 1877 – 9 August 1962) was a German-Swiss poet, novelist, and painter. In His best-known works include Steppenwolf, Siddhartha, and The Glass Bead Game (also known as Magister Ludi, which won a Nobel Prize for Literature in 1946) — each of which explores an individual’s search for authenticity, self-knowledge and spirituality.
Hesse began his writing career after working at a bookshop and becoming interested in the theological writings of Goethe, Lessing, Schiller, and Greek mythology. Shortly thereafter, he began reading Nietzsche, whose philosophical ideas of “dual… impulses of passion and order” in humankind became a huge influence on many of Hesse’s novels.
Hesse’s novels saw a revival in popularity after his death in 1962, due to their association with some of the popular themes of the 1960s counterculture movement and its associated quest for spiritual enlightenment. Certain scenes from Hesse’s novels, including the “magic theatre” scene in Steppenwolf, were interpreted by some as drug-induced psychedelia. San Francisco’s Magic Theatre and numerous schools in Germany are named after Hesse. (Wikipedia)
“Natures of your kind, with strong, delicate senses, the soul-oriented, the dreamers, poets, lovers are almost always superior to us creatures of the mind. You take your being from your mothers. You live fully; you were endowed with the strength of love, the ability to feel. Whereas we creatures of reason, we don’t live fully; we live in an arid land even though we often seem to guide and rule you. Yours is the plenitude of life, the sap of the fruit, the garden of passion, the beautiful landscape of art. Your home is the earth; ours is the word of ideas. You are in danger of drowning in the world of the senses; ours is the danger of suffocating in an airless void. You are an artist; I am a thinker. You sleep at the mother’s breast; I wake in the desert. For me the sun shines; for you the moon and the stars.” – Hermann Hesse, Narcisuss And Goldmund