Over the weekend I started reading Brida by Paulo Coelho. For the second time. I was already in the middle of a book (a light bollywood-ish novel, by an author whose first work made me feel she was just sooo good… but her subsequent novels made me feel she should not only stop watching bollywood movies, but also re-consider the titles of her books) but something in Brida screamed out to me. In the middle of the night. I do not know why (yet).
It is a book about magic and soul-mates and knowledge/wisdom. I do not say this with absolute conviction. I read it nearly four years ago, and every single thing (plot, characters, etc) has just slipped out of my head. When I first read it, I was pre-occupied with too many things. I was unemployed, my dad was unwell, I did not have a place to stay in Bangalore (not literally; I stayed in a hostel, I just couldn’t bear to stay there even a day longer). So soul-mates and magic were the last things on my mind.
But of late, a friend and I have been reading a lot about soul-mates. So much, that it could be called a “research”. Mostly on unreliable sites that come up on a Google search. Wikipedia offers a very romantic insight of how humans were split into two and they spend their whole lives trying to search for their other half. But something about the explanation did not click in me (I do not know where my friend is with her “research”) It wasn’t the question “what are soul-mates?” that bothered me. We all have some concept of them, if not from Wikipedia, then from childhood fairytales (and a fairly good knowledge about magic from Harry Potter :P) What bothered me is “How will you know?”
Most (unreliable) Google search result websites said that people would spot each other across a crowded room and get a “zinggg!!” feeling… this shocked me. Too many pairs of eyes have met across too many crowded rooms without even saying so much as a “Hello” to each other. So that’s DEFINITELY not it.
Another way (this is my understanding of the whole thing), people who have a lot in common (perhaps a little too much), and think the same (or similar) things at the same time could be considered by some as soul-mates. But then, what if you meet such a person but never muster the courage to approach them. Coelho says in Brida (of which I have re-read only the first couple of pages) that in such cases, where we let our soul-mates pass us by, “we will be condemned to the worst torture humankind ever invented for itself: loneliness”… kinda harsh…
I am still wondering why Brida called out to me from my bookshelf. Stating in a Paulo Coelhoic way, why is the universe asking me to re-read this book?
PS: I let my mind wander on and on with no real point to make. This results in my posts being exceedingly long and exceedingly meaningless. Shutting up now. Soul-mates don’t exist. Magic doesn’t exist. Knowledge – doubtful. End of discussion.
(13-05-2013 – I finished reading Brida)