Hermann Hesse

Copyright Michael D. Robbins 2003


Astro-Rayological Interpretation & Charts
Images and Physiognomic Interpretation

to Volume 3 Table of Contents


German Novelist, Poet, Mentor for Spiritual Seekers

July 2, 1877, Calw, Wuertenburg, Germany, 6:30 PM, LMT.
(Source; Time stated in mother’s diary) Died, August 9, 1962, Montagnola.

(Ascendant in Sagittarius with Jupiter rising in the same sign; MC, Libra; Sun and Venus in Cancer; Moon loosely conjunct Saturn in Pisces, with Mars also in Pisces; NN in Pisces; Mercury in Gemini; Uranus in Leo; Neptune and Pluto in Taurus)      

was one of the leading psycho-spiritual authors of the twentieth century. For more than half a century (1905-1962) his novels inspired those who sought truth and a deeper sense of their spiritual identity—especially the young.

Many of his novels are largely autobiographical, drawn from his life of frequent psychological crisis and suffering, and his progressive understanding of the dynamics of the psyche. His constant bouts with depression, alcoholism and his sometime suicidal nature compelled him to seek the aid of two outstanding psychologists—C.G. Jung and J.B. Lang, with whom he shortly developed a deep and abiding friendship. His experience in prolonged therapy afforded him a profound knowledge of the psyche that found expression in his increasingly psychoanalytic and symbolic novels.   

A number of themes recur in Hesse’s work; the spiritual loneliness of the artist and his estrangement from the modern world; the duality of human nature; the need for man to free himself from the established patterns of culture and civilization in order to discover and live true to his deeper spiritual nature; the value of Eastern Mysticism in the achievement of Self-realization. Hesse's later works reveal his deepening interest in Jungian concepts of introversion and extroversion, the collective unconscious, idealism, and symbols.   

Among Hesse’s better known works are Demian (1919), which made him famous in Germany, Siddhartha (1922, tr. 1951), an imaginative account based on the early life of the Buddha, Der Steppenwolf (1927, tr. 1929, 1963), Narziss und Goldmund (1930, tr. Death and the Lover, 1932; Narcissus and Goldmund, 1968) and Das Glasperlenspiel (1943, tr. The Glass Bead Game, 1970) received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1946.

Significant Rays in Hesse’s Energy System and some Astrological Correlations with these Rays

The Second Ray of Love-Wisdom

It is probable that the second ray is the Hesse’s soul ray. Beneath his agonizing and artistically-fruitful psychological troubles, one senses an incessant search for the wisdom which releases, for the understanding which restores a human being to his essence.

Certain of his novels are written largely on the fourth ray of “Harmony through Conflict”, but three, in particular, sound a note of transcendence of the agony of human dualism, and the resolution which arises through unified spiritual understanding. These novels are: Journey to the East, Siddhartha, and The Glass Bead Game, or Magister Ludi. The protagonist of the last novel, The Glass Bead Game, is clearly an advanced initiate of the Pythagorean mould—a man who understands the world through a developed “pure reason”—in the occult sense.

The second and fourth rays, are notably, rays of suffering (following by the transcendence of suffering through beauty, wisdom and love). The struggles of the fourth ray are proverbial, and of the individual on the second ray, it is said that he is possessed by the tendency to “agonise towards the goal, carrying the burden of the world, learning—through identification with others—a detachment which, as time proceeds, negates all pain.” (DINA I 149)         

Hesse’s path, therefore, was the path of sensitivity agony and suffering leading to redemption and release.  

Hesse was largely a product of German Culture with its fourth ray soul, though his father was of Russian descent, and from the time he was forty-two, Switzerland was his country of choice, and later home. Given the themes of a number of his novels (duality and conflict), one might be tempted to think of him as a fourth ray soul, except for the persistently underlying themes of wisdom and enlightenment which seem still more fundamental beneath the fray. It is as if the struggles of the fourth ray were meant to lead to the realizations of the second. If a subray for the soul were to be hypothesized, one could very reasonably justify the fourth.

Second Ray Conduits into the Astrological Chart

Two of the three signs/constellations which transmit the second ray are prominent in Hesse’s chart—Gemini and Pisces. Gemini holds a vitally important angular Mercury,  and Pisces holds Mars, Saturn and the Moon (orthodox ruler of his Cancer Sun Sign) as well as the asteroid Vesta and the North Node—clearly a very heavy concentration of astrological factors).

As well, the primary second ray planet, Jupiter, rises in its own sign Sagittarius, conferring an incessant urge towards the expansion of consciousness (a predominating second ray theme). The sextile of Neptune to the Cancerian Sun (of which it is esoteric ruler) and the trine from Venus in Cancer to the Pisces Moon should not be ignored for their possibility of transmitting the second ray to and through the emotional vehicle.        

The Fourth Ray of Harmony through Conflict

Even a superficial study of Hesse’s life and impact will reveal the potency of this ray of artistry and struggle. It is probable that the fourth ray was the ray of his troubled, struggling personality and probably of his lower mind as well. The greater part of his quite long life was spent in the throes of conflict, with which he sought to come to terms using all his psychological insight and artistic sensitivity. He was a man “caught between”, as it were, (the undiscovered planet, Pan, opposes his Sun in Cancer).

The protagonists of almost all his novels are beset with rending conflicts, or there are two contrasting protagonists who embody the conflict within Hesse’s own psychological nature. It can truly said that Hesse’s spiritual journey led from the recognition of deep-seated inner and outer conflict, through the intensive application of inner resources to resolve the conflict, and on to the liberation which belongs only to those who have embraced and then transcended conflict (as did Siddhartha when merging with the river he understood the necessity for the Samsara which had well nigh overcome him, and a truer means of release than he had ever fathomed).

Fourth Ray Conduits into the Astrological Chart

Again two of the three signs/constellations that transmit this ray are tenanted by planets. Jupiter rises in fourth ray Sagittarius and Neptune conjuncts Chiron (and parallels it closely as well) in fourth ray Taurus. Scorpio is not tenanted, but Pluto (a ruler of Scorpio) is in fourth ray Taurus and importantly placed in the fifth house of creative self-expression, allowing deep intra-psychic probing to be released in art. Neptune (important because of its association with Cancer and Pisces) is related to the fourth or buddhic plane, and, thus, the presence of Neptune in Taurus can emphasize the fourth ray.    

The Moon and Mercury are the two planets which are primarily associated with the fourth ray. Both are important in Hesse’s chart. The Moon rules Cancer orthodoxly, and is powerful (though problematic) in late Pisces. Fourth ray Mercury is angular (even if the time 6:30 PM is not exactly correct—though it is close). Despite the fluctuations and crises of his life (and, to a degree, because of them), Hermann Hesse was a successful novelist, and this prominent Mercury, transmitting the fourth ray, certainly contributed significantly to his success.

The Sixth Ray of Idealism and Devotion

This ray is prominent is Hesse’s make up, coloring not only his astral body, but his whole personality. If we look for evidence of the sixth ray, we find it demonstrated in his pacifism at the time of the second world war (though he came near to entering the military service, but was rejected by the German Army).

Further, he was a dedicated writer. His longing for transcendence (a sixth ray, Neptunian theme) runs through many of his works. Alcoholism is frequently found when sixth ray Neptune is prominent, and when the fourth ray is added to the sixth, the problem is accentuated. Ireland, for instance, which has a reputation for alcoholism, is largely a combination of the fourth and sixth rays. Ireland, like Hesse, has a prominent Pisces, in relation to which Neptune is an important, ‘special’ ruler.

With Hesse himself, and with his protagonists, we find the individual embroiled in conflict, but longing to be free. Much of Hesse’s life could be described as a quest for liberation. The sixth ray is the ray of the quest. Given the placement of the Moon and Saturn in this sign, it can be supposed that Hesse had significant incarnational experience upon the sixth ray. At first it seemed he would choose a career in religion and diligently entered a German seminary to prepare himself, but he rebelled shortly, and left the seminary to become a writer. The sixth ray, though strong, was, it may be hypothesized, more of the past than of the present.

Astrological Conduits for the Sixth Ray

Again, two of the three signs/constellations transmitting the sixth ray are potent in Hesse’s chart. We have already spoken of the stellium in Pisces, linked to his Cancerian Sun by the Moon. Pisces can express in relation to either the second or sixth ray, or both as in Hesse’s case. His overwhelming emotionalism, leading to depression, alcoholism and various means of escape, is very much the product of the Piscean influence.

When the sixth ray is strongly expressing through Pisces, the individual, acutely aware of the imperfections of life, its less than ideal nature, suffers and, when not constructively motivated, seeks to escape from or obliterate the cause of the suffering.    

For accentuation, we find sixth ray Mars placed in sixth ray Pisces and Vesta (an asteroid of devotion and commitment) there as well, conjuncting the hyper-sensitive Moon. The urge to fight for an ideal and to save through idealism can be strong when Mars tenants Pisces.    

Sagittarius is the Ascendant

No sign expresses the sixth ray more strongly during this World Period than Sagittarius. Jupiter rising in Sagittarius only accentuates its potency. Hesse was a man with a mission that became increasingly clear to him as life proceeded. Although the sixth ray may have been a “legacy ray” (a ray prominent in an immediately preceding incarnation or incarnations and brought forward into the present), mediated through Pisces, it was, in a higher sense, a ray for the future, because the Rising Sign and its ray (or rays) always point towards a quality which should increasingly be developed if the present incarnation is to be considered a spiritual success.

Hesse was to become a source of vision and inspiration to three generations of seekers. One can hardly avoid the sixth ray implications of this destiny.

Other Rays

The two-four-six line is the most prominent in Hesse’s case. Some seventh and fifth ray may be suspected. There appears to have been a physical delicacy and hypochondria, which are not so much found when the third ray is the ray of the physical-etheric vehicle.

Some fifth ray seems to be present as well. Sagittarius and Leo both transmit it, but more important is concrete Saturn in the third house of lower mind. For a time he was apprenticed in a clockwork factory in Calw, Germany. The fifth and seventh rays would be needed for such work.

He was also apprenticed in a bookstore as a stock clerk. Here we seen the Gemini influence, but also mundane Saturn in the third house associated with the lower applications of mind and hand.

Astrological Factors of Significance

1.Hesse’s Ascendant is Sagittarius and Jupiter rises. Herman Hesse was a seeker who, through his art, taught others how to seek a deeper spiritual reality. Despite his bouts with depression and alcoholism, he was a spiritual optimist (Jupiter in Sagittarius), who had seen the light and knew that it was real. His was an adventurous journey towards the distant goal of psycho-spiritual fulfillment. He presented a vision of this fulfillment to his readers, enjoining them to travel with him—to the East—although the journey might be fraught with crisis and peril.

2. Rising Jupiter is closely conjunct the star Acumen and opposed to Betelgeuse. Acumen confers great intelligence and discernment, and Betelgeuse unmitigated success.

3. Jupiter is also opposed to Polaris (a circumpolar star, the longitude of which is projected on the ecliptic and thus interpreted in terms of its zodiacal position). Polaris is a major “star of direction”, and befits the “guru” role that came to Hesse as generations of seekers came to appreciate the direction of his thought. In a way, Hesse was leading the young people ‘Home’ (Cancer), even though he, himself, had tremendous struggles along the way he so eloquently described.

4. The heliocentric Earth (as esoteric ruler of Sagittarius) placed in the sign of transfiguration, Capricorn, contributes to the intensity of the light which he envisioned. He had not yet reached the “promised land”, but his vision was both real and inspiring.

5. Hesse’s Sun Sign is Cancer: exoterically this worked out quite literally in the building of homes for his family. Psychologically, he was a person of extreme sensitivity, only heightened because of the placement of the Moon (orthodox ruler Cancer) in Pisces—in the latter degrees (usually karmically critical). There was great ‘trouble’ in his psychological household, and internecine warfare between the elements and principles of his personality nature. The theme of the isolation (Cancer) of the sensitive artist or spiritual seeker from an uncomprehending environment is prominent. 

Esoterically, we find Cancer at work in his deep interest in the overcoming of schisms within the personality—a process leading to integration and fusion. That which was divided, he sought to make whole. Cancer unites fragments into wholes.

6. Mars in salvational Pisces is closely trine the Cancerian Sun. Hesse was driven to find a solution to his agonizing crises. This trine (as well as Jupiter rising) contributed to his inspirational effect on so many seekers.

7. The Pisces Moon indicated an almost morbid sensitivity. Placed in the third house of lower mind, it suggests the fusion of kama and manas (kama-manas), so useful for a novelist or artist, but so troublesome if one wishes to control his emotions. (Fortunately, Mercury is prominent in the air sign, Gemini).

8.The Moon in Pisces is conjunct the fixed star, Scheat, which for the average individual is considered malefic. It is associated with suicides and drownings. Hesse attempted suicide and sought to ‘drown his sorrows’ in alcohol. However, in those who can respond more positively, Scheat is the star of the free-thinker who displays great mental-creativity, even brilliance. He was able to transform his fears and other psychological liabilities into creative art, and thus redeem them.

9. Pisces Moon is within a degree of the asteroid Vesta. This conjunction confers an intense devotion and even self-sacrifice, only accentuated by the influence of Mars in Pisces.

10. Mercury in Gemini is upon the seventh house cusp, opposing Jupiter and the Ascendant and sextiling Uranus exactly. Hesse was born to be a writer. This is how he met the world. (It is interesting that Leibniz, on quite a different ray and with a vastly different psychology) also had Mercury at the cusp of the seventh, and was an indefatigable writer. Hesse, of course, had many more psychological complications. Initially, he sought the help of Carl Jung in relation to writer’s block. This is graphically displayed by a close square of Saturn (from inhibitory Pisces and in the third house of communication) to Mercury. Even the emotional Pisces Moon is close enough to a square of Mercury (a little more than six degrees) to contribute significantly to the conflict between mind and emotions. One can imagine that Hesse was very subject to his moods—although his mind knew better.

11. Mercury is closely trine the MC. Hesse was an author by profession. Close aspects to the MC illustrate the manner in which one may successfully pursue a career and gain recognition. If Hesse’s personality and mental rays were the fourth, and if the fourth ray were the subray of the soul, we can see how important would be this Mercury position. It would define the profession of his personality. We can say that the purpose of his soul in this particular incarnation was to seek and share wisdom. The soul used this angular Mercury in the process.

12. The opposition between second ray Jupiter in Sagittarius and fourth ray Mercury in Gemini describes the dynamic between the proposed soul and personality rays. Mercury enters into the world of conflict (for it is the “Star of Conflict”) and artistically conveys the nature of this conflict through the written word. All this is under the direction of Jupiter in Sagittarius, which seeks to promote the elevation and expansion of consciousness, and the realization of the wisdom, light and love which underlie the many difficult inter-psychic and intra-psychic interactions that Mercury in Gemini so effectively describes.

We note that Jupiter and Mercury orthodoxly rule all signs on the Mutable Cross. Hesse’s works were useful in helping aspirants make the transition from the late Mutable Cross of aspiration, to the Fixed Cross of consistently applied discipleship.

13. Mercury is exactly sextile Uranus. Through his writing, Hesse became an awakener. His approach was new and enlivening. He rebelled against conventionality and gave seekers a fresh perspective.

14. It should be noted that Mercury is quite closely parallel to Venus. This has the effect of a conjunction. The union of these two planets brings quality to the mind, and heightens both its luminosity and its power to express beauty. The Sun is also involved in this parallel, and so are Jupiter and the Ascendant. Luminosity of mind became the servant of a growing expansion of consciousness and growth of wisdom.

15. Venus is in late Cancer trine the Pisces Moon. Exoterically, this combination contributes to the creation of beautiful homes (in Hesse’s case, beside the water and built by himself). The appreciation of physical beauty would be strong. 

This trine gives beauty to the emotional life and its creativity and lyricism to one’s expression. Indeed, Hesse was a poet whose lyricism was admired.

Esoterically, the light and love of the soul that Venus represents, becomes available to the lunar realm. The entire process of personality integration (undertaken in Cancer) is dependent upon the guidance of the soul. Carl Jung calls this the “individuation process”—a process in which Hesse (Jung’s patient and friend) was deeply involved. One can imagine that with such a strong Moon, Neptune, Pisces and Sagittarius, Hesse was possessed of a fertile visual imagination, which contributed strongly to the individuation process through the recollection of dreams—a cornerstone in the Jungian approach.

16. Venus is also widely trine the Moon, which can stabilize the affections (which, Hesse, with three marriages—two of them ending in divorce—badly needed). The combination also adds structure to the expression of beauty.

17. Of Mars and Jupiter much has already been said. Both are in sixth ray signs, and both contributed to the enthusiasm Hesse succeeded in generating in those who sought a more meaningful life.

18. Saturn is placed in Pisces in the third house. One can see, with the susceptible Moon also placed in the third house (conjunct Vesta) a prescription for depression. The mind could easily become overwhelmed by emotion, image, mood—and feel as if there was no hope, no escape.       

Saturn is involved in a T-Square with Jupiter and Mercury. This T-Square is definitive for Hesse’s life. It saves him from an easy optimism and facile expression of thought promoted by the Jupiter/Mercury opposition. Gifted with a wealth of ideas and visions, and facile in expression, the flow would be uninterrupted if not for the mental/emotional crisis engendered by Saturn, Who puts all visions and thoughts to the test. The vision may be clear and beautiful and the thoughts about the goal exhilarating, but suffering enters, and the actual state of the psyche forces itself to the forefront of consciousness. The actual psychic condition limits the tremendous progress envisioned and the speed towards fulfillment. Unless the karmic residue is worked through (karmic Saturn in karmic Pisces), the great and lofty ideas (Jupiter and Mercury) cannot be actualized.

The third house is the house of the writer and the thinker. Saturn in Pisces indicates a definite spiritual responsibility to face the ghosts of the past and expiate them. This Hesse did through his writings and through the personal struggles and crises, which enrich his writings with the bitterness and beauty of real experience.

19.Saturn is also square the proposed Ascendant/Descendent axis. Given a birth time of 6:30 PM, the square is quite exact. Even if the time of birth were a half hour earlier or later, the square would still be preserved, and it is formidable. There were many crises in Hesse’s relationship life. He was twice divorced and only in his third marriage did he find a union of greater quality. Saturn square the Ascendant/Descendent tests all relationships. One can easily see how Hesse’s struggles to express adequately and his self-criticism of his thought process would act adversely upon his unions.

20. Uranus is not only sextile Mercury, but trine both the Sagittarian Ascendant and Jupiter. We see a very flowing configuration, with Uranus mediating the opposition between Jupiter and Mercury, and reinforcing them both. Uranus is placed in the eighth house of transformation. This eighth house placement enhances the role of Uranus as an awakener and the agent of deep change. Hesse’s Sagittarian vision was anything but orthodox.

He offered a vision of transformation (Uranus in H8), and. significantly, he went through the process. Hesse’s consummating vision was optimistic (especially in his final novel) and full of great possibilities. His work showed what can be achieved if one undertakes to really awaken the potentials for deep psychic change. At length the combination of Sagittarius, Jupiter, Uranus and Mercury, overcame the self-doubts, pessimism and depression of Saturn and the Moon in Pisces. Appreciation for his work only grew during his lifetime. He left this incarnation at the age of eighty-five, five weeks after a large birthday celebration honoring him. It would seem that the larger life-objectives had been achieved.

21. Neptune, as the esoteric ruler of the Cancerian Sun, is significantly placed in a house friendly to it—the fourth. It is, however, conjunct and parallel Chiron. Both planets can be connected with the second ray. Together they can indicate much psychological pain, and the ability to heal that pain.   

The fourth house represents, among other things, the dregs of the aura. Here karma settles and becomes one’s heredity, for good or ill. Throughout much of his mature life, Hermann Hesse was delving into the depths of the psyche — sensitively, intuitively, perceptively—and, so it seems, with the objective of healing (Chiron) the difficulties he discovered.   

The Sun in Cancer offers an energy that is useful for personality integration. But Hesse required in-depth integration. This he learned through his art and through consultation with the great depth-psychologist Carl Jung. The deep psyche for which Neptune (and Pluto) is the symbol, required intuitive penetration, and the revelation of the transcendent possibilities inherent in those psychic depths. Carl Jung, himself, was not stranger to such penetration, and one can see that these two men must have shared a profound understanding of the subtleties and dangers of the greater Psyche.

22. The creative potentials of Pluto in H5 have already been discussed. We note, however, that Pluto is square to transformative Uranus—Pluto being quite the regenerator Himself. Uranus is at home in H8 because it is the house of its exaltation.

23. Pluto is also intimately related to the eighth house because its rules Scorpio. The square between the two promises that the transformations undergone would be deep and lasting (and, perhaps, dangerous in process). Because of the houses involved we see again the connection between psychological change and creative expression.

The Timing of a few Significant Events in the Life of Herman Hesse

1. Herman Hesse became a permanent resident of Switzerland in 1919: The progressed Moon (ruling one’s home or native country) was at the MC. The progressed MC was just entering Sagittarius (foreign lands)

2.Siddhartha was released in 1922: T-Jupiter was conjuncting the MC and P-Moon was just moving into Sagittarius.

3.He became a Swiss citizen in 1923: T-Saturn was at the MC. Saturn is the law and the MC/IC rules where a person lives. It is his ‘stability axis’.

4.In 1927 he met and courted his future wife, Ninon Dolbin, and started the construction of his beloved house, Casa Bodmer.  There was a lunar eclipse on the Ascendant/Descendant and a solar eclipse within a few degree of his Sun in Cancer.

5. Hermann Hesse saw The Glass Bead Game published in 1943. In the year following, P-MC conjuncts P-Jupiter in Sagittarius, indicating the fulfillment of Wisdom. In that same year, there is a progressed lunation in the fifteenth degree of Virgo, just into the ninth house of publishing.

6.Hermann Hess receive the Nobel Prize for Literature late in 1946: There was a solar eclipse on heliocentric Earth (esoteric ruler of the Sagittarius Ascendant) and thus opposite the Sun; there was a lunar eclipse on his Ascendant/Descendant axis, emphasizing soul mission, his identity and its relation to the public; there was a solar eclipse on his Sun, again, just as when he had built his beloved home.

As well, during the year in which he received the prize, progressed Venus (indicating the work of the Solar Angel within the personality) was conjuncting the MC, and T-Jupiter (bringing success and fulfillment) was also conjuncting it. The progressed Moon in Libra was at the MC as well. It looks as if the decision was made sometime in August when all these favorable indicators were concentrated at the MC—his status and reputation. The actual awarding of the prize would then follow as an effect.       

Sun         SEcl            (X)     Tr-Tr Jan 3 1946   21:15  12°Cp32' D
Mo         LEcl            (X)     Tr-Tr Jun 15 1946 03:39  23°Sg05' D 
Sun         SEcl            (X)     Tr-Tr Jun 29 1946 12:52  06°Cn48' D 

7.Herman Hesse died of a cerebral hemorrhage, on August 9, 1962: T-Pluto opposed progressed Mars. T-Mars was conjunct the seventh house cusp. There was a solar eclipse within three degrees of  the Vertex, the point of fate. T-Saturn had reached the opposition to that July 31st solar eclipse.         

It is impossible to tell, given our present stage of astrological understanding, exactly what indicators or combinations of indicators will cause death. Perhaps no combination inevitably will bring the death of the physical body, but some combinations increase the likelihood. Hermann Hesse had both Mars very active on the day of his passing, and Pluto and Saturn were exact as well. For much of the day, the transiting Moon had been in Scorpio—ruled by Pluto and Mars.

There are many other dynamic factors of considerable interest, but time does not allow them to be treated. The interested student can take the exploration further.

The Esoteric Perspective

If we consult the esoteric rulers of the Sun, Ascendant and Midheaven, we learn of the importance of Neptune, the Earth and Uranus. The heliocentric Earth and geocentric Neptune are trine. Uranus, however, is not in aspect with either. Esoterically, Neptune in Taurus is a light-bearer, bringing the light of the pure reason of the buddhic plane into the lunar worlds, which are represented by the fourth house (though Neptune is not far from the fifth and in the same sign as is found on the fifth house cusp—Taurus). Esoterically, Hesse was bringing the light of intuition into dark and wounded (Chiron) places, and seeking their redemption (Chiron and Neptune).      

We know that Sagittarius rules the “glorification of the Path”, and the Earth (esoteric ruler of Sagittarius) represents the practical treading of that Path, leading to the development of the sacred human being, and eventually, a sacred planet. Earth is heliocentrically in Capricorn; the vision of the mountain-top, with its supernal light, exists. Hesse was challenged, not just to envision the goal and describe the Path, but (in a practical Capricornian manner) to tread it. We can see from studying his life that he often had a decided difficulty in doing that, but he persisted and inspired many.    

Uranus, as esoteric ruler of the MC, indicates a higher calling—one of greater significance than that indicated by artistic Venus in Cancer (orthodox ruler of the MC) trine the Moon. Hesse’s apparent vocation was writer, novelist and poet.  More deeply, he was a liberator of the individual (Uranus in Leo) through psycho-spiritual transformation (Uranus in H8, trine Ascendant and Jupiter, and square to Pluto, the “Regenerator”). Hesse, a spiritual Sagittarian, was describing a journey to the Light and into greater consciousness. To restructure the psyche (Uranus in H8) with which he was presented at birth, was his means.


In these studies we are to a degree focussed on the relation of the individual analyzed to the Path of Spirituality. Was the individual “on the Path”? Was the individual an aspirant, a disciple, an initiate? How do we know? What can the rays proposed for the individual and the astrological indications tell us about the individual’s spiritual life?        

We find in Hermann Hesse an advanced individual of great sensitivity and artistic skill. The issues of the psyche and its forces are well-known to him. He is not naïve with respect to the depths and heights of human nature. He is a true seeker, forced to encounter and resolve the inevitable ‘troubles’ along the way—troubles born of residual karma and, simply, the human condition.   

Such were the irregularities of his life, the unconquered areas of lunar living, that we cannot conceive of him as having attained the third initiation. His struggles, it would seem, pertain far more to the second, with its mastery and harmonization of the astral body.    

But his vision was towards the achievement of the third degree, and the protagonist in his final novel The Glass Bead Game, had certainly achieved the goal. Hesse saw the Great Light, and knew that it could be attained by all who would truly “Journey to the East”.

It is reasonable to think of Hermann Hesse as an advanced seeker, capable of leading and inspiring many lesser seekers. He was full of aspiration, one-pointed through all his struggles; losing his way (apparently) and finding it again, righting himself, and re-embarking upon the Great Quest.         

Perhaps his greatest gift to his aspiring readers is his conviction that, despite psychological conflict, crisis and turmoil, there is a way through to great realizations and expansions of consciousness. His service was that of inspiration through beauty, leading, at length, to enlightenment and wisdom.


All men are prepared to accomplish the incredible if their ideals are threatened.

Eternity is a mere moment, just long enough for a joke.

Everything becomes a little different as soon as it is spoken out loud.

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.
(Venus trine Saturn.)

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.
(Venus in 7th house.)

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.
(Mercury in Gemini conjunct Descendant.)

Those who cannot think or take responsibility for themselves need, and clamor for, a leader.

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

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.

To study history means submitting to chaos and nevertheless retaining faith in order and meaning. It is a very serious task, young man, and possibly a tragic one.
(Sun in Cancer. Saturn conjunct Moon in Pisces.)

I am fond of music I think because it is so amoral. Everything else is moral and I am after something that isn’t. I have always found moralizing intolerable.
(Neptune in Taurus conjunct Chiron.)

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.

One never reaches home, but wherever friendly paths intersect the whole world looks like home for a time.
(Sun in Cancer.)

In each individual the spirit is made flesh, in each one the whole of creation suffers, in each one a Savior is crucified.
(Saturn conjunct Moon in Pisces.)

You treat world history as a mathematician does mathematics, in which nothing but laws and formulas exist, no reality, no good and evil, no time, no yesterday, no tomorrow, nothing but an eternal, shallow, mathematical present.

Every age, every culture, every custom and tradition has its own character, its own weakness and its own strength, its beauties and cruelties; it accepts certain sufferings as matters of course, puts up patiently with certain evils. Human life is reduced to real suffering, to hell, only when two ages, two cultures and religions overlap.

What I always hated and detested and cursed above all things was this contentment, this healthiness and comfort, this carefully preserved optimism of the middle classes, this fat and prosperous brood of mediocrity.
(Uranus in 8th house.)

The bourgeois treasures nothing more highly than the self.... And so at the cost of intensity he achieves his own preservation and security. His harvest is a quiet mind which he prefers to being possessed by God, as he prefers comfort to pleasure, convenience to liberty, and a pleasant temperature to that deathly inner consuming fire.

History seems to us an arena of instincts and fashions, of appetite, avarice, and craving for power, of blood lust, violence, destruction, and wars, of ambitious ministers, venal generals, bombarded cities, and we too easily forget that this is only one of its many aspects. Above all we forget that we ourselves are a part of history, that we are the product of growth and are condemned to perish if we lose the capacity for further growth and change. We are ourselves history and share the responsibility for world history and our position in it. But we gravely lack awareness of this responsibility.

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.

If time is not real, then the dividing line between this world and eternity, between suffering and bliss, between good and evil, is also an illusion.

Most people are like a falling leaf that drifts and turns in the air, flutters, and falls to the ground. But a few others are like stars which travel one defined path: no wind reaches them, they have within themselves their guide and path. Hermann Hesse
(Sagittarius Ascendant.)

The true vocation of man is to find his way to himself.
(Sagittarius Ascendant.)

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. Hermann Hesse

"Now everything changed. My childhood world was breaking apart around me. My parents eyed me with a certain embarrassment. My sisters had become strangers to me. A disenchantment falsified and blunted my usual feelings and joys: the garden lacked fragrance, the woods held no attraction for me, the world stood around me like a clearance sale of last year's secondhand goods, insipid, all its charm gone. Books were so much paper, music a grating noise. That is the way leaves fall around a tree in autumn, a tree unaware of the rain running down its sides, of the sun or the frost, and of life gradually retreating inward. The tree does not die. It waits."

"For example, there is a species of butterfly, a night-moth, in which the females are much less common than the males. The moths breed exactly like all animals, the male fertilizes the female and the female lays the eggs. Now, if you take a female night moth----many naturalists have tried this experiment---the male moths will visit this female at night and they will come from hours away. From hours away! Just think! From a distance of several miles all these males sense the only female in the region. One looks for an explanation for this phenomenon but it is not easy. You must assume that they have a sense of smell of some sort like a hunting dog that can pick up and follow a seemingly imperceptible scent. Do you see? Nature abounds with such inexplicable things. But my argument is: if the female moths were as abundant as the males, the latter would not have such a highly developed sense of smell. They've acquired it only because they had to train themselves to to have it. If a person were to concentrate all his will power on a certain end, then he would achieve it. That's all. And that also answers your question. Examine a person closely enough and you know more about him than he does himself."
Demian, 1919

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

Knowledge can be communicated, but wisdom cannot. A man can find it, he can live it, he can be filled and sustained by it, but he cannot utter or teach it.

Without words, without writing and without books there would be no history, there could be no concept of humanity.
(Mercury in Gemini conjunct Descendant.)

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

There's no reality except the one contained within us. That's why so many people live an unreal life. They take iimages outside them for reality and never allow the world within them to assert itself.

If a man has nothing to eat, fasting is the most intelligent thing he can do.

The truth is lived, not taught.

Perhaps people like us cannot love. Ordinary people can - that is their secret.

Words do not express thoughts very well. They always become a little different immediately after they are expressed, a little distorted, a little foolish.

“It is possible for one never to transgress a single law and still be a bastard.

To be able to throw one's self away for the sake of a moment, to be able to sacrifice years for a woman's smile - that is happiness.

Happiness is a how; not a what. A talent, not an object.

You know quite well, deep within you, that there is only a single magic, 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” (Moon in Pisces trine Venus.)

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.

You are only afraid if you are not in harmony with yourself. People are afraid because they have never owned up to themselves.

Only the ideas that we really live have any value.

As a body everyone is single, as a soul never.

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

Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go.
(Mars, Moon, Saturn & North Node in Pisces.)

Solitude is independence.

There is, so I believe, in the essence of everything, something that we cannot call learning. There is, my friend, only a knowledge - that is everywhere.

From my thirteenth year on, it was clear to me that I wanted to be a poet or nothing at all.

And every occasion when a mask was torn off, an ideal broken, was preceded by this hateful vacancy and stillness, this deathly constriction and loneliness and unrelatedness, this waste and empty hell of lovelessness and despair.

Wisdom is only taught through experience.

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, everything made sense.

What could I say to you that would be of value, except that perhaps you seek too much, that as a result of your seeking you cannot find.

The truth has a million faces, but there is only one truth.
(Sagittarius Ascendant)

Whenever books are burned, sooner or later men also are burned.

One can be happy when he finds his dream, but every dream has to be followed by a new one and you can't capture any of them forever.

Love is stronger than violence.

Paradise is seldom recognized as such until it is considered from the outside.


Hermann Hesse in 1927Hermann Hesse (2 July 1877 – 9 August 1962) was a German-Swiss poet, novelist, and painter. In 1946, he received the Nobel Prize in Literature. His best known works include Steppenwolf, Siddhartha, and The Glass Bead Game (also known as Magister Ludi).

Hermann Hesse was born on July 2, 1877 in the Black Forest town of Calw in Württemberg, Germany to a Christian Missionary family. Both of his parents served with a Basel Mission to India, where Hesse's mother Marie Gundert was born in 1842. Hesse's father, Johannes Hesse, was born in 1847 in Estonia as the son of a doctor. The Hesse family had lived in Calw since 1873, where they operated a missionary publishing house under the direction of Hesse's grandfather, Hermann Gundert.

Hermann Hesse spent his first years of life surrounded by the spirit of Swabian piety. In 1881 the family moved to Basel, Switzerland for five years, then returned to Calw. After successful attendance at the Latin School in Göppingen, Hesse began to attend the Evangelical Theological Seminary in Maulbronn in 1891. Here in March 1892, Hesse showed his rebellious character: he fled from the Seminary and was found in a field a day later.

During this time, Hesse began a journey through various institutions and schools, and experienced intense conflicts with his parents. It was also at about this time that his bipolar disorder began to affect him, and he mentioned suicidal thoughts in a letter from March 20, 1892. In May, after an attempt at suicide, he spent time at an institution in Bad Boll under the care of theologian and minister Christoph Friedrich Blumhardt. Later he was placed in a mental institution in Stetten im Remstal, and then a boys' institution in Basel.

At the end of 1892, he attended the Gymnasium in Cannstatt. In 1893, he passed the One Year Examination, which concluded his schooling.

After this, he began a bookshop apprenticeship in Esslingen am Neckar, but after three days he left. Then in the early summer of 1894, he began a fourteen month mechanic apprenticeship at a clock tower factory in Calw. The monotony of soldering and filing work made him resolve to turn himself toward more spiritual activities. In October 1895, he was ready to begin wholeheartedly a new apprenticeship with a bookseller in Tübingen. This experience from his youth he returns to later in his novel, Beneath the Wheel.

On October 17, 1895, Hesse began working in the bookshop Heckenhauer in Tübingen, which had a collection specializing in theology, philology, and law. Hesse's assignment there consisted of organizing, packing, and archiving the books. After the end of each twelve hour workday, Hesse pursued his own work further, and he used his long, free Sundays with books rather than social contacts. Hesse studied theological writings, and later Goethe, Lessing, Schiller, and several texts on Greek mythology. In 1898, Hesse had a respectable income that enabled his financial independence from his parents. During this time, he concentrated on the works of the German Romantics, including much of the work from Clemens Brentano, Joseph Freiherr von Eichendorff, Friedrich Holderlin and Novalis. In letters to his parents, he expressed a belief that "the morality of artists is replaced by aesthetics."

In the fall, Hesse released his first small volume of poetry, Romantic Songs and in the summer of 1899, a collection of prose, entitled One Hour After Midnight. Both works were a business failure. In two years, only 54 of the 600 printed copies of Romantic Songs were sold, and One Hour After Midnight received only one printing and sold sluggishly. Nevertheless, the Leipzig publisher Eugen Diederichs was convinced of the literary quality of the work and from the beginning regarded the publications more as encouragement of a young author than as profitable business.

Beginning in the fall of 1899, Hesse worked in a distinguished antique book shop in Basel. There the contacts of his family with the intellectual families of Basel helped open for him a spiritual-artistic environment with rich stimuli for his pursuits. At the same time, Basel offered the solitary Hesse many opportunities for withdrawal into a private life of artistic self-exploration through journeys and wanderings. In 1900, Hesse was exempted from compulsory military service due to an eye condition, which, along with nerve disorders and persistent headaches, affected him his entire life.

In 1901, Hesse undertook to fulfill a grand dream and travelled for the first time to Italy. In the same year, Hesse changed jobs and began working at the antiquarium Wattenwyl in Basel. Hesse had more opportunities to release poems and small literary texts to journals. These publications now provided honorariums. Shortly the publisher Samuel Fischer became interested in Hesse, and with the novel Peter Camenzind, which appeared first as a pre-publication in 1903 and then as a regular printing by Fischer in 1904, came a breakthrough: From now on, Hesse could live as a free author.

Hesse's writing desk, pictured at the Museum GaienhofenWith the literary fame, Hesse married Maria Bernoulli in 1904, settled down with her in Gaienhofen on Lake Constance, and began a family, eventually having three sons. In Gaienhofen, he wrote his second novel Beneath the Wheel, which appeared in 1906. In the following time he composed primarily short stories and poems. His next novel, Gertrude, published in 1910, revealed a production crisis — he had to struggle through writing it, and he later would describe it as "a miscarriage."

During this time, there also was increased dissonance between him and Maria, and in 1911, Hesse left alone for a long trip to Sri Lanka and Indonesia. Any spiritual or religious inspiration, for which he hoped, did not find him, but the journey made a strong impression on his literary work. Following Hesse's return, the family moved to Bern in 1912, but the change of environment could not solve the marriage problems, as he himself confessed in his novel Rosshalde from 1914.

At the outbreak of the First World War in 1914, Hesse registered himself as a voluntary with the German government, saying that he could not sit inactively by a warm fireplace while other young authors were dying on the front. He was found unfit for combat duty, but was assigned to service involving the care of war prisoners.

On November 3, 1914 in the Neuen Züricher Zeitung, Hesse's essay O Friends, Not These Tones (O Freunde, nicht diese Töne) appeared, in which he appealed to German intellectuals not to fall for nationalism. What followed from this, Hesse later indicated, was a great turning point in his life: For the first time he found himself in the middle of a serious political conflict, attacked by the German press, the recipient of hate mail, and distanced from by old friends. He did receive continued support from his friend Theodor Heuss, and also from the French writer Romain Rolland, whom Hesse visited in August 1915.

This public controversy was not yet resolved, when a deeper life crisis befell Hesse with the death of his father on March 8, 1916, the difficult sickness of his son Martin, and his wife's schizophrenia. He was forced to leave his military service and begin receiving psychotherapy. This began for Hesse a long preoccupation with psychoanalysis, through which he came to know Carl Jung personally, and was challenged to new creative heights: During a three-week period during September and October 1917, Hesse penned his novel Demian, which would be published following the armistice in 1919 under the pseudonym Emil Sinclair.

Hermann Hesse in 1925When Hesse returned to civilian life in 1919, his marriage was shattered. His wife had a severe outbreak of psychosis, but even after her recovery, Hesse saw no possible future with her. Their home in Bern was divided, and Hesse resettled alone in the middle of April in Ticino, where he occupied a small farm house near Minusio bei Locarno, and later lived from April 25 until May 11 in Sorengo. On May 11, he moved to the town Montagnola and rented four small rooms in a strange castle-like building, the 'Casa Camuzzi'.

Here he explored his writing projects further; he began to paint, an activity which is reflected in his next major story Klingsor's Last Summer, published in 1920. In 1922, Hesse's novel Siddhartha appeared, which showed the love for Indian culture and Buddhist philosophy, which had already developed at his parent's house. In 1924, Hesse married the singer Ruth Wenger, the daughter of the Swiss writer Lisa Wenger and aunt of Meret Oppenheim. This marriage never attained any true stability, however.

In this year, Hesse received Swiss citizenship. His next major works, Kurgast from 1925 and The Nuremberg Trip from 1927, were autobiographical narratives with ironic undertones, and which foreshadow Hesse's following novel, Steppenwolf, which was published in 1927. In the year of his 50th birthday, the first biography of Hesse appeared, written by his friend Hugo Ball. Shortly after his new successful novel, he turned away from the solitude of Steppenwolf and married a Jewish woman, Ninon Dolbin Ausländer. This change to companionship was reflected in the novel Narcissus and Goldmund, appearing in 1930.

In 1931, Hesse left the Casa Camuzzi and moved with Ninon to a large house (Casa Hesse) near Montagnola, which was built according to his wishes.

The Glass Bead Game
In 1931, Hesse began planning what would become his last major work, The Glass Bead Game. In 1932 as a preliminary study, he released the novella, Journey to the East. Hesse observed the rise to power of National Socialism in Germany with concern. In 1933, Bertolt Brecht and Thomas Mann made their travels in exile, and in both cases, were aided by Hesse. In this way, Hesse attempted to work against Hitler's suppression of art and literature that protested Nazi ideology.

Since the 1910s, he had published book reviews in the German press, and now he spoke publicly in support of Jewish artists and others pursued by the Nazis. However, when he wrote for the Frankfurter Zeitung, he was accused of supporting the Nazis, whom Hesse did not openly oppose. From the end of the 1930s, German journals stopped publishing Hesse's work, and his work was eventually banned. As spiritual refuge from these political conflicts and later from the horror of the Second World War, he worked on the novel The Glass Bead Game which was printed in 1943 in Switzerland. For this work among his others, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1946.

After WWII, Hesse's productivity declined. He wrote short stories and poems, but no more novels. He occupied himself with the steady stream of letters he received as a result of the prize and as a new generation of German readers explored his work. He died on August 9, 1962 and was buried in the cemetery at San Abbondio in Montagnola, where Hugo Ball is also buried.

1898 - Romantische Lieder (Romantic Songs)
1899 - Eine Stunde hinter Mitternacht (One Hour After Midnight)
1904 - Peter Camenzind
1906 - Unterm Rad (Beneath the Wheel)
1908 - Freunde (Friends)
1910 - Gertrud (Gertrude)
1914 - Rosshalde
1915 - Knulp
1919 - Demian
1919 - Klein und Wagner (Klein and Wagner)
1919 - Märchen (Strange News from Another Star, short stories)
1920 - Blick ins Chaos (In Sight of Chaos, essays)
1920 - Klingsors letzter Sommer (Klingsor's Last Summer, three novellas)
1922 - Siddhartha
1927 - Die Nürnberger Reise
1927 - Der Steppenwolf (Steppenwolf)
1930 - Narziss und Goldmund (Narcissus and Goldmund)
1932 - Die Morgenlandfahrt (Journey to the East)
1937 - Gedenkblätter (Autobiographical Writings)
1942 - Die Gedichte (Poems)
1943 - Das Glasperlenspiel (The Glass Bead Game, also published as Magister Ludi)
1946 - Krieg und Frieden (If the War Goes On ...)
1976 - My Belief: Essays on Life and Art
1995 - The Complete Fairy Tales of Hermann Hesse

German poet and novelist, who has explored in his work the duality of spirit and nature and individual's spiritual search outside restrictions of the society. Hesse was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1946. Several of Hesse's novels depict the protagonist's journey into the inner self. A spiritual guide assists the hero in his quest for self-knowledge and shows the way beyond the world "deluded by money, number and time."

"For even the most childish intoxication with progress will soon be forced to recognize that writing and books have a function that is eternal. It will become evident that formulations in words and the handling on of these formulations through writing are not only important aids but actually the only means by which humanity can have a history and continuing consciousness of itself." (Hesse in Reading in Bed, ed. by Steven Gilbar, 1974)
was born into a family of Pietist missionaries and religious publishers in the Black Forest town of Calw, in the German state of Wüttenberg. Johannes Hesse, his father, was born a Russian citizen in Weissenstein, Estonia. Hesse's mother, Marie Gundert, was born in Talatscheri, India, as the daughter of the Pietist missionary and Indologist, Hermann Gundert. His parents expected him to follow the family tradition in theology - they had served as missionaries in India. Hesse entered the Protestant seminary at Maulbronn in 1891, but he was expelled from the school. After unhappy experiences at a secular school, Hesse left his studies. He worked a bookshop clerk, a mechanic, and a book dealer in Tübingen, where he joined literary circle called Le Petit Cénacle. During this period Hesse read voluminously and determined the become a writer. In 1899 Hesse published his first works, ROMANTISCHE LIEDER and EINE STUNDE HINTER MITTERNACHT.

Hesse became a freelance writer in 1904 after the publication of his novel PETER CAMENZIND. In the Rousseauesque 'return to nature' story the protagonist leaves the big city to live like Saint Francis of Assisi. The book gained literary success and Hesse married Maria Bernoulli, with whom he had three children. A visit in India in 1911 was a disappointment but it gave start to Hesse's studies of Eastern religions and the novel SIDDHARTHA (1922). In the story, based on the early life of Gautama Buddha, a Brahman son rebels against his father's teaching and traditions. Eventually he finds the ultimate enlightenment. The culture of ancient Hindu and the ancient Chinese had a great influence on Hesse's works. For several years in the mid-1910s Hesse underwent psychoanalysis under Carl Jung's assistant J.B. Lang.

In 1912 Hesse and his family took a permanent residence in Switzerland. In the novel ROSSHALDE (1914) Hesse explored the question of whether the artist should marry. The author's replay was negative and reflected the author's own difficulties. During these years his wife suffered from growing mental instability and his son was seriously ill. Hesse spent the years of World War I in Switzerland, attacking the prevailing moods of militarism and nationalism. He also promoted the interests of prisoners of war. Hesse, who shared with Aldous Huxley belief in the need for spiritual self-realization, was called a traitor by his countrymen.

Hesse's breakthrough novel was DEMIAN (1919). It was highly praised by Thomas Mann, who compared its importance to James Joyce's Ulysses and André Gide's The Counterfeiters. The novel attracted especially young veterans of the WW I, and reflected Hesse's personal crisis and interest in Jungian psychoanalysis. Demian was first published under the name of its narrator, Emil Sinclair, but later Hesse admitted his authorship. In the Faustian tale the protagonist is torn between his orderly bourgeois existence and a chaotic world of sensuality. Hesse later admitted that Demian was a story of "individuation" in the Jungian manner. The author also praised unreservedly Jung's study Psychological Types, but in 1921 he suddenly canceled his analysis with Jung and started to consider him merely one of Freud's most gifted pupils.

Leaving his family in 1919, Hesse moved to Montagnola, in southern Switzerland. Siddharta was written during this period. It has been one of Hesse's most widely read work. Its English translation in the 1950s became a spiritual guide to a number of American Beat poets. Hesse's short marriage to Ruth Wenger, the daughter of the Swiss writer Lisa Wenger, was unhappy. He had met her in 1919 and wrote in 1922 the fairy tale PIKTOR'S VERWANDLUNGEN for Ruth. In the story a spirit, Piktor, becomes an old tree and finds his youth again from the love of a young girl. Hesse divorced from Maria Bernoulli, and married in 1924 Ruth Wenger, but the marriage ended after a few months. These years produced DER STEPPENWOLF (1927). Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who was elected Pope Benedict XVI, once said that Steppenwolf is among his favorite books because it "exposes the problem of modernity's isolated and self-isolating man". The protagonist, Harry Haller, goes through his mid-life crisis and must chose between life of action and contemplation. His initials perhaps are not accidentally like the author's. "The few capacities and pursuits in which I happened to be strong had occupied all my attention, and I had painted a picture of myself as a person who was in fact nothing more tan a most refined and educated specialist in poetry, music and philosophy; and as such I had lived, leaving all the rest of me to be a chaos of potentialities, instincts and impulses which I found an encumbrance and gave the label of Steppenwolf." Haller feels that he has two beings inside him, and faces his shadow self, named Hermine. This Doppelgänger figure introduces Harry to drinking, dancing, music, sex, and drugs. Finally his personality is disassembled and reassembled in the 'Magic Theatre' - For Madmen Only.

"There is no reality except the one contained within us. That is why so many people live such an unreal life. They take the iimages outside them for reality and never allow the world within to assert itself."
During the Weimar Republic (1919-1933) Hesse stayed aloof from politics. BETRACHTUNGEN (1928) and KRIEG UND FRIEDEN (1946) were collections of essays, which reflected his individualism and opposition to mass movements of the day. NARZISS UND GOLDMUND (1930, Narcissus and Goldmund) was a pseudomedieval tale about an abbot and his worldly pupil, both in search of the Great Mother.

In 1931 Hesse married Ninon Dolbin (1895-1966). Ninon was Jewish. She had sent Hesse a letter in 1909 when she was 14, and the correspondence had continued. In 1926 they met accientally. At that time Ninon was separated - she had married the painter B.F. Doldin and planned a career as an art historian. Hesse moved with her to Casa Bodmer, and his restless life became more calm. Hesse's books continued to be published in Germany during the Nazi regime, and were defended in a secret circular in 1937 by Joseph Goebbels. When he wrote for the Frankfurter Zeitung Jewish refugees in France accused him of supporting the Nazis, whom Hesse did not openly oppose. However, he helped political refugees and when Narcissus and Goldmund was reprinted in 1941, he refused to leave out parts which dealt with pogroms and anti-Semitism. In 1943 he was placed on the Nazi blacklist.

"The secret of Hesse's work lies in the creative power of his poetic similes, in the "magic theater" of the panoramas of the soul that he conjures up before the eyes and ears of the world. It lies in the identity of idea and appearances that, to be sure, his work - like any work of human hands - can do more that suggest." (Hugo Ball in Hermann Hesse, 1947)
In 1931 Hesse began to work on his masterpiece DAS GLASPERLENSPIEL, which was published in 1943. The setting is in the future in the imaginary province of Castilia, an intellectual, elitist community, dedicated to mathematics and music. Knecht ('servant') is chosen by the Old Music Master as a suitable aspirant to the Order. He goes to the city of Waldzell to study, and there he catches the attention of the Magister Ludi, Thomas von der Trave (an allusion to Hesse's rival Thomas Mann). He is the Master of the Games, a system by which wisdom is communicated. Knecht dedicates himself to the Game, and on the death of Thomas, he is elected Magister Ludi. After a decade in his office Knecht tries to leave to start a life devoted to realizing human rights, but accidentally drowns in a mountain lake. - In 1942 Hesse sent the manuscript to Berlin for publication. It was not accepted by the Nazis and the work appeared in Zürich, Switzerland.

"Despair is the result of each earnest attempt to go through life with virtue, justice and understanding and fulfill their requirements. Children live on one side of despair, the awakened on the other side." (from The Journey to the East, 1932)
After receiving the Nobel Prize Hesse published no major works. Between the years 1945 and 1962 he wrote some 50 poems and about 32 reviews mostly for Swiss newspapers. Hesse died of cerebral hemorrhage in his sleep on August 9, 1962 at the age of eighty-five. Hesse's other central works include In Sight of Chaos (1923), a collection of essays, and the novel Narcissus and Goldmund (1930), set in the Middle Ages and repeating the theme of two contrasting types of men. In the 1960s and 1970s Hesse became a cult figure for young readers. The interest declined in the 1980s. The Californian rock group Sparrow changed its name to Steppenwolf after Hesse's classic, and released 'Born to be Wild' (1968), which was featured in the film Easy Rider. The name was suggested by the ABC-Dunhill producer Gabriel Mekler who had read the novel. Hesse's books have gained readers from the New Age movements and he is still one of the bestselling German-speaking writers throughout world. A short biography
1877 - On July 2nd, a son is born in Calw/Württemberg to the Baltic missionary and later head of the "Calwer Verlagshaus" (Calw Publishing-House) Johannes Hesse (1847 - 1916) and his wife Marie widow of Isenberg, nee Gundert (1842 - 1902) elder daughter of the well-known India expert Herman Gundert.
1881-1886 - Hesse lives with his parents in Basle, where his father teaches at the "Basler Mission" and in 1883 obtains Swiss nationality (previously Russian nationality.

1886 - 1889 - The family returns to Calw.

1890 - 1891 - Grammar school in Göppingen in order to prepare for the Württemberg State Examination (July 1891) which is a requirement for a free education to become a Protestant clergyman in the "Tübinger Stift". As a State Scholar Hesse has to give up his Swiss civil rights so in November 1890 his father acquires the Württemberg citizenship for him (as the only member of the family).

1891 - 1892 - Seminarist of the Protestant Monastery Seminar in Maulbronn (from Sept 1891 on), from which he escapes after the 7th month.

1893 - He passes the "Einjährig-Freiwilligen-Examen" (one year-optional-exam) in the Grammar School of Cannstatt (in July).

1894 - 1895 - Trainee at the Calw church clock factory for 15 months.

1895 - 1898 - Book dealer apprenticeship in Tübingen (book dealer Heckenhauer), first publication of the poem Das deutsche Dichterheim in Vienna. The first publication of a book Romantische Lieder appears in October 1898.

1899 - Beginning of the draft of his novel Schweinigel. In September move to Basle.

1900 - He begins to write articles and reviews for the "Allgemeine Schweizer Zeitung" which gave him more than his books a certain local reputation which very much supported his socializing.

1901 - Die Hinterlassenen Schriften und Gedichte von Hermann Lauscher are published by Grote, Berlin dedicated to his mother who died just before publishing.

1903 - In May engagement to Marie Bernoulli, just before that he finishes the draft of the Camenzind manuscript, which Hesse sends to Berlin by invitation of S. Fischer publishers. From October on he writes down Unterm Rad in Calw.

1904 - Peter Camenzind is published by S. Fischer in Berlin. Marriage to Maria Bernoulli and move to Gaienhofen at Lake Constance. Freelance author and writer for numerous papers (Münchner Zeitung, Württemberger Zeitung, Simplicissimus)

1905 - Birth of his son Bruno.

1906 - Unterm Rad published by S. Fischer, Berlin. Setting up of the magazine "März". Until 1912 Hesse is co-publisher.

1909 - Birth of his second son Heiner in March

1910 - Gertrud published by Albert Langen in Munich.

1911 - Birth of his third son Martin in July. From Sept. to Dec. trip to India with his friend, the painter Hans Sturzenegger.

1912 - Hesse leaves Germany for good and moves together with his wife and children to Bern, into the house of his dead friend, the painter Albert Welti.

1914 - Roßhalde published in March by S. Fischer, Berlin. At the beginning of the war Hesse volunteers but is considered unfit for service and is assigned to the German Embassy in Bern. Numerous political essays, admonitions, letters to the public, etc in German, Swiss and Austrian papers and magazines.

1915 - Knulp published by S. Fischer, Berlin, Musik des Einsamen new poems published by Eugen Salzer Heilbronn, Schön ist die Jugend published by S. Fischer, Berlin.

1916 - Death of his father. The beginning schizophrenia of his wife and illness of his youngest son lead to Hesse`s nervous breakdown. First psychotherapeutical treatment by J. B. Lang, scholar of C. G. Jung.

1917 - Hesse is advised to stop his journalism on contemporary issues. First use of nom de plume Emil Sinclair. Draft of Demian.

1919 - Breaking up of the Bern household. Separation from his wife who is in a mental institution. Leaving his children with friends. In May move to the Casa Camuzzi in Montagnola/Ticino where he lives until 1931. Demian is published by S. Fischer, Berlin under the nom de plume of Emil Sinclair.

1920 - Gedichte des Malers published by Seldwyla, Bern. Klingsors letzter Sommer published by S. Fischer, Berlin.

1921 - Ausgewählte Gedichte published by S. Fischer, Berlin. Crisis with an unproductivity of almost 11/2 years between the drafts of the first and second part of Siddhartha. Psychonalysis with C. G. Jung.

1922 - Siddhartha published by S. Fischer, Berlin.

1923 - In July divorce from Maria Bernoulli.

1924 - Hesse obtains Swiss citizenship once more. Marriage to Ruth Wenger.

1925 - Kurgast published by S. Fischer, Berlin.

1926 - Hesse is elected a foreign member of the department of creative writing of the Prussian Academy of Arts, which he leaves again in 1931: I have the feeling that, in the event of a next war, this academy will contribute a lot to the group of those 90 or 100 prominent figures, which, as in 1914, will deceive the people by order of the government about every vital issue.

1927 - Die Nürnberger Reise und Der Steppenwolf are both published by S. Fischer, Berlin in time for Hesse`s 50th birthday. By request of his second wife Ruth, whom he married in 1924, their divorce takes place.

1930 - Narziß und Goldmund published by S. Fischer, Berlin.

1931 - Move within Montagnola into a new house, built for him by H. C. Bodmer, and which is at his disposal for the rest of his life. He weds the arts history expert Ninon Dolbin, nee Ausländer, who is from Czernowitz.

1932 - 1943 - Hesse writes Das Glasperlenspiel.

1934 - He becomes a member of the Swiss Club of Poets for better protection from the Nazi cultural policies and for more efficient possibilities of intervention for emigrated colleagues.

1935 - Politically enforced division of the S. Fischer publishers into a German part (managed by Peter Suhrkamp) and the Emigration Publishing Company of Gottfried Bermann Fischer whom the Nazis wont`t allow to take the publishing rights of Hermann Hesse`s works abroad.

1936 - Hesse nevertheless has his hexameter poetry Stunden im Garten published by Bermann Fischer`s Exile Publishing Company in Vienna. First personal meeting with Peter Suhrkamp in September.

1937 - Gedenkblätter und Neue Gedichte brought out by S. Fischer, Berlin.

1939 - 1945 - Hesse's works are declared undesirable in Germany. Unterm Rad, Der Steppenwolf, Narziß und Goldmund und Eine Bibliothek der Weltliteratur cannot be reprinted any more.
Therefore the Gesammelte Werke in Einzelausgaben, which S. Fischer had started to print have to be continued in Switzerland by the publishers Fretz & Wasmuth.

1942 - S. Fischer Publishers are denied printing permission for Das Glasperlenspiel.

1943 - Fretz & Wasmuth, Zürich, publish Das Glasperlenspiel.

1944 - The Gestapo arrests Peter Suhrkamp, Hesse's publisher.

1946 - Hesse's works can now be published in Germany again, to begin with by "Suhrkamp Verlag vorm. S. Fischer", from 1951 on by Suhrkamp Verlag Frankfurt/Main.
Goethe prize of the city of Frankfurt/Main.
Nobel prize.

1950 - Hesse encourages and enables Peter Suhrkamp put up his own publishing-house, which takes place in July.

1951 - Späte Prosa und Briefe come out at Suhrkamp, Frankfurt/Main.

1952 - Gesammelte Dichtungen in 6 volumes are published by Suhrkamp, Frankfurt/Main as a presentation gift for Hesse's 75th birthday.

1954 - Piktors Verwandlung published by Suhrkamp, Frankfurt/Main.

1955 - Peace prize of the German Bookdealers.

1956 - Foundation of the Hermann Hesse prize by the support group of the Deutsche Kunst Baden-Württemberg e. V.

1962 - Hermann Hesse dies in Montagnola, Ticino, on August 9th.


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