This classic of world literature was published in 1922. In recent months, this story appeared more and more often to me until I had no other choice than to just read it. It has a renewed standing in the productivity / mental health / self-improvement corners of the connected world. Seemingly it’s also closely connected with the world of the Stoics, at least in its current (modern) interpretation, though it’s about buddhist philosophy, or rather those philosophies of Lao-Tze instead.
It’s a wonderfully flowing story exhibiting real craftsmanship. At the center of it is a man’s seeking and finding of the “meaning of life”, “enlightenment”, liberation from the wheel of rebirths. The protagonist must experience everything, including the frivolous activities in life in order to learn what freedom and ultimately wisdom truly is. Wisdom can’t be taught, not even by Gotama (the Buddha), he finds. He finds what he seeks in the end by reflecting on his actions during all the phases of his life.
I have read this book in a day. It’s short, but most importantly I was hooked. It’s one of those books which provoke the right thoughts. Which help you grow and see things in a different light. A true work of art and part of world literature for a reason which can be recommended to everyone.