LIKE THE FLOWING RIVER – Thoughts and Reflections
By Paulo Coelho
-A book review
On hearing the word Paulo Coelho, the one thing that will come to your mind will be the book ‘The Alchemist’. Even though that book remains his most famous one, his other books are not less in any way. Here, I am going to tell about a book called ‘Like the Flowing River’.
From the back cover:
These are thoughts and reflections – both funny and poignant, personal and universal, sorrowful and life-affirming – from the master of insight and inspiration, Paulo Coelho.
Paulo finds transcendence in everyday occurrences. Like the toast that fell the right side up; or the man who was discovered in his pyjamas, a skeleton twenty years dead and missed by no one; or an ordinary pencil, symbolic of life’s trials and triumphs; or the necessity of remaining open to love, even if others try to hurt you.
Paulo Coelho is an enchanting storyteller, inspiring people all over the world to see beyond the ordinary into the remarkable.
About the book:
Book Title: Like the flowing river
Author: Paulo Coelho
Publisher: Harper Collins
Cost: 325 INR
This book is a collection of short stories and there are around one hundred of them, each ranging from a page to three pages. Some seem to be written from the personal experiences of the author and others are written from the third person point of view. You don’t have to sit at a stretch to complete it. You can read it very comfortably as a casual read, though you might feel not so casual after reading it.
Whenever I see this book, I remember the story of how I acquired it. Yes. Acquiring would be the correct word! It was a day of outing years before and that day coincided with the last day of a sale at a bookstore and I ended up buying it along with two more books. It was a sweet memory, worthy to be written as a separate post.
In the book, the short stories are easily readable and you don’t have to strain your mind to understand what the author has wanted the reader to know. For example in a story titled ‘How one thing can contain everything’, the author has told the readers about his meeting with a painter. But the actual philosophy comes from the painter himself and not the author. And the painter says ‘Each of us contain in our souls the same universe’. Eventhough we are different in many aspects, all of us are related by the soul and no one could have said that more beautifully.
There is another short story called ‘The missing brick’. In this the author has given his own experience and though it was just two paragraphs, here he explains how for the lack of one small thing, we ditch the whole plan or prospect. It would have been easier to gain the small thing than starting a new one altogether.
His stories make you think. It doesn’t guide you or give you secret passwords to happiness.
It is just a book full of stories, telling its own stories and doesn’t expect you to follow it. it just wants you to learn from its life experiences and after having read the book, you will realise the impact it had on you.
My rating : 8/10