March Read: The Witch of Portobello

I have been a fan of Paulo Coelho’s writings ever since Chin Lay introduced me to his masterpiece – The Alchemist. After that, I took interest to read his other books – Veronica Decides to Die, The Eleven Minutes (although I didn’t finish reading the book – because it was just too much emotions for me to handle at that point in time), and The Zahir. With the exception of The Alchemist, I found his other books to be a little depressing at the beginning. But then, his message is profound and some of his statements ignite some thinking and realization – to look within ourselves and to find the missing link – and to live life to the fullest – pursuing the dreams we hold back in the name of societal norms and conditions. And the author always adds a twist to the story’s end.

I particularly love his message advocating freedom in pursuing dreams and to enjoy the miracles of life. The Witch of Portobello is another one of his excellent writings – advocating about loving unconditionally and to embrace life with an open heart.

Some of my favorite lines from the book:

~ When we step out of our normal world and leave behind us all the usual barriers and prejudices, we tend to become more adventurous ~
~ Everything is worship if your mind is focused on the present moment ~
~ Start doing what you want to do, and everything else will be revealed to you ~
~ Why do people prefer to believe in something far away and forget what is there before their eyes, a true manifestation of the miracle? ~

The statement from the author that strikes me the most – Love simply is – there is no reasoning, no judgment and no authority involved.

I’ve always pondered on my religious direction and as time passes, I’ve come to realize the distinction between religion and spirituality; that I am more inclined to explore on the spiritual plane. I’ve come to realize that the road towards the spirituality quest grants more freedom on what I choose to believe and how I choose to worship the divine force. Every act of mine now carries more meaning and significance than before. And every ritual that I practice now comes from my heart and have a life of its own. And as time goes by, I am learning more and more on the things that drive me forward and am convicted that I am on the right track – the path towards a spiritual journey – filled with love and contentment. I’ve wondered what faith or religion would I impart to my children – and as I learn more, the answer is gradually becoming clearer to me.

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