If you are a fan of Paulo Coelho – you must read ‘Adultery’. If you are looking for a ‘The Alchemist’ read – ‘Adultery’ may not be it, but it will encourage you to dig deep in true Coelho form.
I am so tempted to give this book to some of my married friends. I wondered as I read this book if indeed the guises of a long term union, temptation and following through has lurked in the shadows for them. Indeed, terrifying but also as ‘Adultery’ tells us a tale full of honesty, questioning and the confusion that comes with it.
Even if you aren’t married or in a long term relationship, Coelho will offer up some other ruminations to ponder as he did for me.
‘After a certain age, we put on a mask of confidence and certainty. In time, that mask gets stuck to our face and we can’t remove it.
As children, we learn that if we carry it we’ll receive affection, that if we show we’re sad we’ll be consoled. If we can’t get what we want with a smile, we can surely do so with our tears.
But we no longer cry, except in the bathroom when no one is listening. Nor do we smile at anyone other than our children. We don’t show our feelings because people might think we’re vulnerable and take advantage of us.
Sleep is the best remedy.’
It’s interesting for a woman now in her 40’s – I feel like I have shed that mask and I live with an either you ‘like me or you hate me’ view. Warts and all. Is it because I have had a surplus of time to be with myself and let’s face it being a bit selfish. Maybe I’m just over it and know in my heart that I don’t need to strive to be a Superwoman. I know who I am and I’m okay with it. Instead of focusing all of my energy on little children, I have spent quite a few years nurturing the little child inside of me and figuring out my quirks and ironing out those rough edges.
Sleep – gosh I have numerous dates with my pillow over my weekends. I get a lot of sleep and it is indeed my saving grace, my rejuvenation and keeps me focused. This happens even more during the Fall and Winter moments. Hibernation is decadence.
The Fall is my most favourite time of year and Coelho found a way to draw some symbolism to it and our own emotional processing.
‘There is no better time than the autumn to begin forgetting the things that trouble us, allowing them to fall away like dried leaves. There is no better time to dance again, to make the most of every crumb of sunlight and warm body and soul with its rays before it falls asleep and becomes only a dim light bulb in the skies.’
I find that I wake up in the Fall. Perhaps it is the cool breeze, rustling of leaves and new season for adventure. But I also find myself taking things a lot less seriously and dropping things in their wake. Be it things that aren’t working, staying away from toxicity and using my energy towards celebratory pursuits.
I also find myself looking up at the sky when I return from home late at night and feeling truly inspired. This is something I rarely did. But it has proven to be a nice accent to the end of my day.
‘Let yourself get carried away by the night from time to time. Look up at the stars and try to get drunk on the sense of infinity. The night, with all its charms, is also a path to enlightenment. Just as dark well has thirst-quenching water at its bottom, the night, whose mystery brings us closer to the mystery of God, has a flame capable of rekindling our soul hidden in its shadows.’
In the Fall and Winter it’s all about slowing down and for me, truly feeling appreciative for what I have. Also making time to do some work on myself without distraction.
‘Adultery’ by Paulo Coelho will read differently for all of us dependant on our life situations. In true Coelho fashion he has an eloquent way of bringing enlightenment, spirituality, life challenges and entwining it into an always purposeful and uplifting read.