I had written a completely different draft for this entry but it didn't sound like what I really feel about the book. So I scrapped it all and replaced it with this one instead.
If there's anything extraordinary about this book which enables it to sell more than 6 million copies worldwide, I would say none. The storyline is simple - about a woman's quest for joy, spiritual healing and balance of both - just how many times have we heard or read about it.
But there lies a true simplicity in the storytelling for each page which allows you to connect with the whole real-life experience faced by the author, Elizabeth Gilbert, while she was in Italy, India and Bali, Indonesia seeking the three things mentioned earlier.
Her pursuit for spiritual, especially, was written from a novice's point of view, sparing all the scientific and entangling terms which may turn this book into a 'Spiritual-101 Guide. Thankfully she writes as if she's right there in front of you over a cup of coffee, spilling all the' details of her one-year around the world journey.
There is no spark, no extra-imagination required to fully understand and grasp the very essence of this book. This book is purely sincere and giving as the story unfolds between one page and the next.
I love this book. I know, millions of people around the world must've said the same thing after reading it and relating it to their lives. I fully understand how she writes about her bottomless depression, the hollowness she felt when she was still married despite 'having it all' - a husband, a big house (two, in fact - one in Manhattan, mind you) and a blossoming career. She lost the connection between her and the bigger picture in life and that's when she knew she needed God from there onwards.
As I said before, there's nothing extraordinary about this book. But its simplicity is what distinguished it from other books out there. Even Oprah admitted this. There is no happy ending in this book, but that too depends on how you perceived a happy-ending. But for me, as a reader who was hungry for some lesson from the woman who has been there and back, I truly gained alot by reading this book. I might not wake up the next day feeling completely like a different person, but I sure know what I need to do to improve my life.
A must read if you're interested to do the same.
Here are some parts of the book which I really liked:
"When I get lonely these days, I think : So be lonely, Liz. Learn your way around loneliness. Make a map of it. Sit with it, for once in your life. Welcome the human experience. But never again use another person's body or emotions as a scratching post for your own unfulfilled yearnings.""The Bhagavad Gita - that ancient Indian yogic text - says that it is better to live your own destiny imperfectly than to live an imitation of somebody else's life with perfection. So now I have started living my own life. Impefrect as it may look it is resembling me now, thoroughly.""In a world of disorder,disaster and fraud, sometimes only beauty can be trusted. Only artistic excellence is incorruptible. Pleasure cannot be bargained down. And sometimes the meal is the only currency that is real.""But I felt a glimmer of happiness when I started learning Italian, and when you sense a faint potential of happiness after such dark times you must grab onto the ankles of that happiness and not let go until it drags you face-first out of the dirt - this is not selfishness, but obligation. You were given life; it is your duty (and also your entitlement as a human being) to find something beautiful within life, no matter how slight.""Imagine that the universe is a great spinning engine. You want to stay near the core of the things - right in the hub of the wheel - not out at the edges where all the wild whirling takes place, where you get can frayed and crazy. The hub of calmness - that's your heart."
I hope the movie is as good as the book, if not better.