Tuesday, December 27, 2011

"Eleven Minutes" by Paulo Coelho

 (This post has adult content. Just warning you.)
Paulo Coelho: What a man! What a man!

I really feel that Paulo Coelho should be a household name. A few years back, my first introduction to him was through his novel The Alchemist. The Alchemist is absolutely fabulous. If you are on any type of journey or need to take a life journey, I highly recommend this book. My students tell me that every book is my favorite, but The Alchemist is really at the top of my list.

After reading the Alchemist, I realized that this man has a lot to say, and I wanted to hear it. I read several of his other books, and I really do love all of his books. However, the one that really struck a cord with me as much as The Alchemist was Eleven Minutes. 

I had to share Eleven Minutes with two of my friends that I knew would get it: My dear friend Dr. Semple and one of my most well-read friends who enriches my life every time that I talk to him, Tjuan Smith. Tjuan and I both came to the conclusion that this novel is not for the faint at heart, and we only recommend it to people who are ready...............

By the way, I must give a shout out to T. Smith. Tjuan Smith lives in Chicago and is a graduate of Tuskegee University. (The Pride of The Swift Growing South.) He is a great listener, good friend, conscientious, and a Certified Project Manager and Six Sigma Black Belt for the TLS Global Consulting Group. (You see, I really have awesome friends.)

T. Smith

Back to Eleven Minutes! Recently, Eleven Minutes was on my mind, so I reread it, and it was even more captivating this read than on the first read. Paulo Coelho is THE MAN!!!!

This is one of those books that moved me so much until all that I could do was sit and think after I finished it. I was not so sure what I should be thinking, but I knew that I needed to think and go back and read my many highlighted passages.

The main character Maria is lured into a life while searching for adventure, money and/or a husband, and she had to make a decision: "I can choose to be a victim of the world or an adventurer in search of treasure. It's all a question of how I view life."  She eventually meets a man whom she loves, and he loves her, and she discovers that love is a sense of being with someone without actually possessing him: True Freedom. (This was so liberating to me: loving without possessing.) 

I'm going to let this book speak for itself:
"Although my aim is to understand love, and although I suffer to think of the people to whom I gave my heart, I see that those who touched my heart failed to arouse my body, and that those who aroused my body failed to touch my heart."     

 "If you live your life intensely, you experience pleasure all of the time and don't feel the need for sex. When you have sex, it's out of the sense of abundance, because the glass of wine is so full it overflows naturally, because it is inevitable, because at that moment, and only at the moment, you have allowed yourself to lose control."

 "If I must be faithful to someone or something, then I have, first of all, to be faithful to myself."

"Anyone who has lost something they thought was theirs forever, finally come to realize that nothing really belongs to them."

"Humans can withstand a week without water, two weeks without food, many years of homelessness but not loneliness. It is the worst of all tortures, the worst of all sufferings."

"In love, no one can harm anyone else; we are each of us responsible for our own feelings and cannot blame someone else for what we feel."

"All my life, I thought of love as some kind of voluntary enslavement… Freedom only exists when love is present. The person who gives him or herself wholly, the person who feels freest, is the person who loves the most."

"The great aim of every human being is to understand the meaning of total love. Love is not to be found in someone else, but in ourselves; we simply awaken it. But in order to do that, we need the other person. The universe only makes sense when we have someone to share our feelings with."

"Really important meetings are planned by the souls long before the bodies see each other."
If the above quotes spoke to your heart, read this book and do it soon. I promise that you will think about a lot of things differently.

Every book is not my favorite book, but this one is surely high on my list.

By the way, it contains adult content and children should stray away!!!


James Gilliam said...

This must be one "heckofa" book! I must read it!!

James Gilliam

Heather said...

Yes! The Alchemist is one of my favorite books as well! I read it about 5 years ago during my trip to Costa Rica however I think I may pick it up again and go deeper... thanks Jackie! I did read Eleven Minutes and enjoyed that as well... he really is a great writer! I love when the perfect book appears to support where I am on my journey. Blessings

Jacqueline Stallworth said...

Thanks for the comments. 11 minutes as well as the Alchemist as awesome books. Paulo is extremely bright, and I am thrilled that he is willing to share.

T. Smith said...

Well Sister Stallworth...you are something else and so it Paulo! I loved the writing style of this author because he makes you feel the air, smell the food in the market, see people having hooka pipes experience, hear the donkeys, and taste the fresh falafel in the 100 degree heat.

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