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Elif by Paulo Coelho

Elif (original 2010; edition 2011)

by Paulo Coelho, Saadet Özen (Translator)

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6252515,533 (3.21)1
Authors:Paulo Coelho
Other authors:Saadet Özen (Translator)
Info:Can Yayınları

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Aleph by Paulo Coelho (2010)

Recently added byangela.jean, LBT, Junopolis, private library, TheHiveLibrary, arvoparts, SatiMazumdar, jorgensenjc



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English (18)  Spanish (3)  French (2)  Italian (1)  Norwegian (1)  All (25)
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I love Coelho's books and really enjoyed this one. Particularly the idea of the Aleph point, and karmic unraveling through forgiveness. ( )
  MicheleMG | Feb 1, 2017 |
Very interesting. Each chapter contains a lesson on life. The author tries to make it as painless as possible for the reader to understand the complicated workings of his mind. ( )
  henrypotter | Feb 6, 2016 |
This novel is autobiographical to some extent (I'm not sure where the line between fact and fiction lies). When the author has trouble progressing on his spiritual journey, he decides to take a physical journey across Russia on the Trans-Siberian Railroad. He is accompanied by his Russian publisher and agent, a translator, and a young Turkish woman named Hilal who meets him at his hotel and insists on accompaning him because she senses a spiritual connection with him. He eventually finds the solution to his spiritual stagnation, but not in the places he expected to find it.

I know that Coelho is not for everyone, but I really like his books even though I don't completely buy into his unique views on the world. I pulled this one off my TBR pile because I had been in a pretty negative mood for a while and I hoped this book would inspire me to think more positively. The first half really disappointed me, however. I got tired of the author's whining and didn't really get a lot of the points he was trying to make. The second half of the book really picked up for me, though, and I did get a lot out of it. It's not one of Coelho's best books or one of my favorites, but I ended up liking it very much. ( )
  AmandaL. | Jan 16, 2016 |
I don't feel worthy to rate this book. I realize it's dismissive to say I'm not into mysticism, but I'm not. Still, I enjoyed reading the book, it made sense, and I'm giving the book to someone who will appreciate it more.

There are references to Hasidic stories:

On page 121, the author tells the "sacred fire" story about in which the Baal Shem Tov goes to a certain part of a forest, lights a fire and says a prayer and a miracle happens. In the next generation, the fire cannot be lit, but the miracle still occurs. In the next, the prayer is also lost, but still help arrives. Finally, all that is left is the story and the hope that it will be enough. Elie Wiesel tells this story as well.

"Yes, I could have reached the same conclusions without ever leaving Brazil, but just like Santiago, the shepherd boy in one of my books, sometimes you have to travel a long way to find what is near." [p. 255] This is Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav's "The Treasure," retold by Uri Shulevitz in a picture book with the same moral at the end.

Other quotes of interest:
"'If we're talking about the magical Tradition, the answer is yes, the Aleph is outside of us. If we're talking about the human tradition, people who are in love can, at certain very special moments, experience the Whole. In real life, we tend to see ourselves as separate beings, but the Universe is only one thing, one soul....'" [p.161]

"'I love you because all the loves in the world are like different rivers flowing into the same lake, where they meet and are transformed into a single love that becomes rain and blesses the earth.'" [p. 215]
  raizel | Jul 5, 2015 |
This book was listed as non-fiction but it was a better written fiction than the author's acclaimed The Alchemist. Although Coelho is a brilliant spinner of yarns, he obviously has no clue about reality or how the world works. Strangely, that works to the reader's benefit because we get to enjoy the fruits of the author's over-active imagination and flights of fancy. It might even work out better that he pretended this was a real account from his life because it adds the air of legitimacy that makes the lunacy within more enduring. ( )
  jimocracy | Apr 18, 2015 |
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O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for those who turn to you.  Amen.

A certain nobleman went into a far country, to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return.
- Luke 19:12
The Aleph was about two to three centimeters in diameter, but all of cosmic space was there, with no diminution in size.  Each thing was infinite, because I could clearly see it from every point on the universe.
-Jorge Luis Borges, The Aleph

Thou knowest all--I cannot see.
I trust I shall not live in vain,
I know that we shall meet again,
in some divine eternity.

- Oscar Wilde, "The True Knowledge"
For J, who keeps me walking,
S.J., who continues to protect me,
Hilal, for her words of forgiveness in the church in Novosibirsk.
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Oh, No, Not another ritual!
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Presents the story of a man who initiates a world-spanning effort to achieve spiritual renewal and human connection, a journey during which he reconnects with a woman from an earlier life while transcending time and space.

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