A few months ago my husband and I were preparing for a get-away and I wanted something to read. I asked my facebook friends to recommend some good fiction. My friend, Alison, said, "anything Paulo Coelho." When James and I got to the coast I popped into a used book store and went straight to the "C's." I found Coelho's Witch of Portobello, scooped it up and was immediately hooked.
I have now read all but two or three of his books and am always startled by the simplicity, elegance and wisdom in his writing. I can't get enough. Paulo Coelho's novels are sneaking into my subconscious. He says (through one character or another in nearly every book) that the way to evolve/grow/gain insight/truly live is to basically CHANGE IT UP. Do something counter-intuitive. When something makes your subconscious go, "Whaaat???" you are effectively dusting off cobwebs, cleaning out closets and making room for an "a-ha," a paradigm shift, ...an inner growth spurt, or a spiritual "waking up." It is the safe, the routine, the normal, the average and the mundane that essentially become spiritual sleeping pills, lulling our brains and spirits to sleep and keeping them asleep. Coelho's characters, when awakened (sometimes through something as simple as going on a trip or dancing in a totally unconscious/childish way), not only have their own lives utterly altered, but also become catalysts for change in their marriages, circles, towns and even world.