The Fifth Mountain

Wednesday, August 15, 2007 Vishaal 1 Comments

For most of the 20th Century, Biblical fiction was “Christian fiction”. Biblical fiction gives a fictionalized, religious perspective of the people, places and times of the Bible. This book is an Inspirational biblical fiction. The story is set in the strife torn middle east of 870 B.C. with the chief protagonist being the 23 year old Elijah who is persecuted for following the theory of the Single God. This is a wonderful account of Elijah’s journey. I’m not sure of the biblical truth of Elijah but it makes me want to go and find out.

"God is all powerful. He can do anything, and nothing is forbidden to Him, for if it were, there would exist, someone more powerful than He, to prevent His doing certain things. In that case, I should prefer to worship and revere that more powerful someone."
- Elijah
The Fifth Mountain
Paulo Coelho

I am amazed at how all of a sudden I am being exposed to the books of Paulo Coelho. I had just finished with The Valkyries, and a few days later, a friend handed me The Fifth Mountain.I had felt let down by The Valkyries, so I picked this one with some trepidation. But my doubts disappeared after a few pages.

This is a moving and poignant tale of the Seer Elijah, his trials and tribulations, his love for the Duties given to him by god and above all a tale of how one man overcomes all his personal tragedies with faith and love. Elijah’s experience and particularly his idea that we should all name ourselves according to the meaning of our lives was most inspiring. Elijah discovers his true purpose in life and christens himself 'Liberation'. This simple thought inspires in us to choose what we want to be known for in the pages of history, what is the legacy we want to leave behind.

This is my third novel after The Alchemist and The Valkyries and I rate this next only to the first one I read. A must read for all those who are feeling troubled by their faith in god and the spiritual.

"Life is made of our attitudes. And there are certain things that the gods oblige us to live through. Their reasons for this does not matter, and there is no action we can take to make them pass us by. "
-The shepherd to Elijah
The Fifth Mountain
Paulo Coelho.


The Valkyries !

Monday, August 06, 2007 Vishaal 4 Comments

"Infatuation was a good thing. It gave spice to life, and added to its enjoyment.
But it was different from love. Love was worth everything, and couldn't be exchanged for anything"
-Paulo in The Valkyries
Paulo Coelho.

This is the second novel of Paulo Coelho that I have read, the first being The Alchemist. I had purchased The Alchemist off the road side in Belgaum where I was completing my undergraduate studies and its simplicity of thought and expression had simply amazed me. So when I got an opportunity to read this one, iI took the opportunity with both hands.

The Valkyries is not in the same class though. It is not so easy to understand as The Alchemist, and the expectations created by the former makes one feel that it is rambling, self-absorbed and way too full of itself. But once you get to understand it you realise that the story is beautiful, the message is beautiful, affecting, moving
The book is a mystical and spiritual journey of a man who heads into the Mojave desert with his wife in search of an answer - how does one talk to and see their gaurdian angel. I can't say that it has had any sort of lasting effect on me.

I will add this, the "The Valkyries" is a true story according to Paulo Coelho. He admits to adding two fictional details in his accounts, but overall it is a true story.

Read this book when you have nothing else to do!