Monday, April 19, 2010

eat pray love

Elizabeth Gilbert's yearlong search for inner peace has been on my bookshelf for a while. 
I knew that this book wouldn't be a light read, so I've been choosing lighter reading for quite a while instead.
Life hasn't exactly lended itself to deep reading lately.
I finally decided the other day to finally pick it up and check it off my list...once and for all.

This was not the first time nor probably the last time that I will misjudge a book.
Reading Eat Pray Love was like a daily devotion.
Elizabeth Gilbert's travels through Italy, India and finally Indonesia are therapeutic to anyone who's ever searched for inner peace.
I'm not sure I know anyone who's not searching for inner (and outer for that matter) peace.

There's quite a bit of pasta, yoga and other cultural tidbits throughout the book but it's not a dry read as I expected it to be.  Elizabeth Gilbert has a keen sense of humor and keeps the tone of the book realistic rather than some of the other New Age stuff that's out there.

Not saying this is a "New Age" book...
unless New Age is about getting to know yourself and acceptance of that self as it is...
and learning how we can sometimes be our own worst enemies
by trying to control everything around us
and not letting God take control as the universe commands.

There's also quite a bit of that forgiveness, acceptance, and responsibility for our actions stuff going on in this book...
We could all use a reminder every now and then. 

Elizabeth Gilbert doesn't preach...nor does she judge...nor is she trying to tell anyone how to live their life.

She takes the reader with her to Italy...a time of pleasure...a time of giving to herself...for healing...

Once she feels her wounds are less raw, she goes on to India where she learns how to delve deeply into her own self and come to terms with her place in the world.

At the end of her journey she heads to India to find balance...her time in India seems to serve as the segue from her journey back into the real world.
We've all been to retreats where we've left renewed...only to return home and lose all our energy once faced with real life again.
In India Elizabeth Gilbert learned to live again...but to wait...not force things to happen...and to slow down.

One of the things that I thought Elizabeth Gilbert did very well in this book is paint a picture of achieving true peace through acceptance, not just of herself but others in the worlds around her...
even others who come from different backgrounds, cultures, religions or maybe don't live their lives the way she chooses to lead hers.
And, heaven forbid, that we might even learn something from others...
if we'd shut up a minute or two and LISTEN.

Once you decide to let God be in control of the universe, it becomes easier to accept that we should step out of the judgement role.
Who are we to judge something that we did not create?
Who's to say that all these different cultures aren't all just interpreting the same concepts, just in different ways, with different names, and different rituals.
And, again, who's to say we get to make these decisions anyway?
I'm going to try a lot harder not to make decisions for interpret His word the way I see fit, etc.
I doubt the Creator of the Universe needs my help :)

Will life be perfect if we all follow Elizabeth Gilbert's path?
Life's never going to be perfect.
Life is all about waking up each and every day and striving, purposely being the best person that we can be...
not only for the good of ourselves and those closest to us...
but for the rest of humanity as well.

I loved this book.

1 comment:

  1. I have heard good things about this book as well as really bad things. I'm glad you liked it- it's nice when you can read a book and find it thought provoking and inspirational. I might have to read it and see for myself! Great Review x