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The Road Of Etty Hillesum To Nothingness

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Chapter Summary

Reading Hillesum's writings, the author was surprised by her interest in Eastern philosophy. Although she casually refers only twice to 'Buddhism,' the author shows that there is a significant correlation between Hillesum's life and writings and Eastern philosophy. In other words: she practised a creative form of 'Buddhism'. Although it is doubtful whether Etty Hillesum knew "The Four Noble Truths," it is amazing how many of these experiences actually apply to her spiritual journey. Carefully going through each point, the author realized to his surprise that he could find a quotation from her writings for each of them. Etty Hillesum loved to use the word Weltinnenraum in her writings. She wrote and rewrote it three times in her diaries. This word represented for her 'the heavens,' 'the skies in herself,' 'the great emptiness,' 'the space full of nothing'..

Keywords: Buddhism; Eastern philosophy; Etty Hillesum's writings; The Four Noble Truths; Weltinnenraum

10.1163/ej.9789004188587.i-490.126
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