A couple of weeks ago, I had picked up Paulo Coehlo’s latest book- “Aleph”(he is known for his world-famous book, “The Alchemist”). The book goes into detail about his latest inner-spiratual crisis.
As a side note, The thing I like about Coehlo’s writings, all are centered around exploration of the human spirit and potential. So, as you can tell, I was pretty excited about “Aleph”.
The book is based on his own personal experience about traveling the world to experience new things and new theories, while reconnecting with old people and places. Guided by subtle signs, Paulo sets off on a journey through Trans-Siberia, Africa, Europe and Asia.
Coelho beautifully describes the experiences he had traveling by train with his publishers and a girl named Hilal, which is not her real name, who insists on joining them. In the story, Paulo describes Hilal as the girl he fell in love with in another life time (FYI, Coehlo is married to another woman). The two become involved in deep conversations about their earlier relationship, and the author describes Hilal as “the woman he betrayed in an act of cowardice so far-reaching that it prevents him from finding real happiness in this life.” Together they address the notion of reincarnation, the here-after, forgiveness, and love.
I love how Coehlo includes excerpts from the Quran and other major religious sources to help his readers question the topics in his books. Although some may find Coehlo’s views distasteful, ‘Aleph’ invites us to consider the meaning of our own personal journeys.
This book might not be everyone’s “cup of tea”, but it definitely made me self-reflect.