This book - Aleph - hits me at a time when I am going through a spiritual turmoil sort of.
I have told this incident to a few folks, but never in this blog - long back in December 2010 - I ran out of Petrol on my bike. A very first in my history. I pushed the bike for more than a kilometer, and managed to buy some questionable looking fluid and resumed my journey.
I was to meet a gentleman to show a demo of our product - and I was late by 1 bloody hour. He waited patiently for me even though it was already his lunch time and did not cancel the appointment.
We spoke for an hour about the product and then we started chatting - what I read, what is my philosophy. He then said this :
"Venkat, do you think we meeting at this moment is coincidental? It is all planned"
Yeah yeah I thought - have heard that one before. Was being polite and just smiled as I did not agree or disagree with it.
He then gave me 9 book titles - 3 of them I have read so far. The 3 are - Conversations with God 1,2 and 3 by Neale Donald Walsch ( another incredible story this author has - from a homeless man to a best selling author ).
What I am going to write below is a gist of things I have read both from the 3 books and Aleph.
* We are all one soul - yes you me and everyone.
* God is manifesting in us to discover who he is
* There are infinite parallel worlds - right now right this minute I am living another life in another time
* Dreams are like a snapshot into these parallel existences
* There are 3 things - Mind, Body and Soul. Soul is actually unhappy when it is trapped - but it is the only way the soul can experience its being
* Death is beautiful - when the secret is revealed and soul is liberated ( remember Steve Job's last words : Oh Wow ! )
* The soul choses what it wants to do in this life - but the mind and body do not allow the soul to do what it wants for various reasons - dogma, fear etc. ( Alchemist : The soul knows - just follow the heart )
* What the soul learns in previous life it brings to this life - the present is a product of the past and future ( yeah its weird but its all parallel remember )
* The whole world is actually going towards euphoria ( the old Gentleman said this same thing ) - as in each reincarnation the soul seeks and reconciles with its previous / future conflicts.
* Religion - the way it has evolved is not right. - this is my humble opinion.
I will leave it here. Try these books - even if you do not agree and read it for entertainment value - will give you a different perspective to who we are and why we are here?
Aleph is not in the same league as Alchemist - it is more profound and there are some brilliant passages where Paulo Coelho talks about love, loss, gift and particularly one on what is Hell and Heaven - this book deserves a second read.
One word of caution though - if you have never read Paulo Coelho before do not start with Aleph. Start with Alchemist, and see if you can get hold of The Pilgrimage too - his personal experience that made him a writer that he is now. Then start on Aleph - he is a genius and you will mis interpret him if you read Aleph first.