I have always believed, and I still believe, that whatever good or bad fortune may come our way we can always give it meaning and transform it into something of value.

— Hermann Hesse

The most exciting Hermann Hesse quotes that are life-changing and eye-opening

If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself.

What isn't part of ourselves doesn't disturb us.


When you like someone, you like them in spite of their faults.

When you love someone, you love them with their faults.


We kill at every step, not only in wars, riots and executions.

We kill when we close our eyes to poverty, suffering and shame.In the same way all disrespect for life, all hard-heartedness,all indifference, all contempt is nothing else than killing.

Hermann Hesse quote Knowledge can be communicated, but not w

Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom.


The truth is lived, not taught.


I wanted only to try to live in accord with the promptings which came from my true self. Why was that so very difficult?


People with courage and character always seem sinister to the rest.


Love your suffering. Do not resist it, do not flee from it. It is only your aversion to it that hurts, nothing else.


I began to understand that suffering and disappointments and melancholy are there not to vex us or cheapen us or deprive us of our dignity but to mature and transfigure us.


There is no reality except the one contained within us.


The call of death is a call of love. Death can be sweet if we answer it in the affirmative, if we accept it as one of the great eternal forms of life and transformation.


A tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me!.

.. Home is within you, or home is nowhere at all.


People with courage and character always seem sinister to the rest.

It was a scandal that a breed of fearless and sinister people ran around freely, so they attached a nickname and a myth to these people to get even with them, to make up for the many times they had felt afraid.


About Hermann Hesse

Quotes 409 sayings
Nationality German
Profession Novelist
Birthday October 16

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


If I know what love is, it is because of you.


It is not our purpose to become each other; it is to recognize each other, to learn to see the other and honor him for what he is.


It may be important to great thinkers to examine the world, to explain and despise it. But I think it is only important to love the world, not to despise it, not for us to hate each other, but to be able to regard the world and ourselves and all beings with love, admiration and respect.


Gaze into the fire, into the clouds, and as soon as the inner voices begin to speak... surrender to them. Don't ask first whether it's permitted, or would please your teachers or father or some god. You will ruin yourself if you do that.


. . . gentleness is stronger than severity, water is stronger than rock, love is stronger than force.


You are only afraid if you are not in harmony with yourself.

People are afraid because they have never owned up to themselves.


What constitutes a real, live human being is more of a mystery than ever these days, and men -- each one of whom is a valuable, unique experiment on the part of nature -- are shot down wholesale.


Each man had only one genuine vocation to find the way to himself.


Within us there is someone who knows everything, wills everything, does everything better than we ourselves.


Because the world is so full of death and horror, I try again and again to console my heart and pick the flowers that grow in the midst of hell.


All the books of the world full of thoughts and poems are nothing in comparison to a minute of sobbing, when feeling surges in waves, the soul feels itself profoundly and finds itself. Tears are the melting ice of snow. All angels are close to the crying person.


Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.


Slowly blossomed, slowly ripened in Siddhartha the realisation, the knowledge, what wisdom actually was, what the goal of his long search was. It was nothing but a readiness of the soul, an ability, a secret art, to think every moment, while living his life, the thought of oneness, to be able to feel and inhale the oneness.


We have to stumble through so much dirt and humbug before we reach home.

And we have no one to guide us. Our only guide is our homesickness.


Every man's story is important, eternal and sacred.

That is why every man, as long as he lives and fulfills the will of nature, is wondrous and worthy of every consideration.


For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers.

I revere them when they live in tribes and families, in forests and groves. And even more I revere them when they stand alone. They are like lonely persons. Not like hermits who have stolen away out of some weakness, but like great, solitary men, like Beethoven and Nietzsche.


madness, in a higher sense, is the beginning of all wisdom


Those who are too lazy and comfortable to think for themselves and be their own judges obey the laws. Others sense their own laws within them.


Any attempt to replace a personal conscience by a collective conscience does violence to the individual and is the first step toward totalitarianism.


Love must neither beg nor demand. Love must be strong enough to find certainty within itself. It then cease to be moved and becomes the mover.


I am in truth the Steppenwolf that I often call myself;

that beast astray that finds neither home nor joy nor nourishment in a world that is strange and incomprehensible to him.


What you call passion is not spiritual force, but friction between the soul and the outside world.


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. Well, then, love your suffering. Do not resist it, do not flee from it. It is your aversion that hurts, nothing else.


At the first kiss I felt something melt inside me that hurt in an exquisite way.

All my longings, all my dreams and sweet anguish, all the secrets that slept deep within me came awake, everything was transformed and enchanted, and everything made sense.


One never reaches home, but wherever friendly paths intersect the whole world looks like home for a time.


I have had to experience so much stupidity, so many vices, so much error, so much nausea, disillusionment and sorrow, just in order to become a child again and begin anew. I had to experience despair, I had to sink to the greatest mental depths, to thoughts of suicide, in order to experience grace.


You can ride, you can travel with a friend of your own;

The final step you must take alone. No wisdom is better than this when known: That every hard thing is done alone.


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


Thus Gotama [Buddha] walked toward the town to gather alms, and the two samanas recognized him solely by the perfection of his repose, by the calmness of his figure, in which there was no trace of seeking, desiring, imitating, or striving, only light and peace


When dealing with the insane, the best method is to pretend to be sane.


Seriousness is an accident of time. It consists of putting too high a value on time. In eternity there is no time. Eternity is a moment, just long enough for a joke


We are not going in circles, we are going upwards.

The path is a spiral; we have already climbed many steps.


Our mind is capable of passing beyond the dividing line we have drawn for it.

Beyond the pairs of opposites of which the world consists, other, new insights begin.


What isn't part of ourselves doesn't disturb us.


Each man's life represents a road toward himself.


The truth has a million faces, but there is only one truth.