Author: Paulo Coelho
‘Aleph,’ as described in the book is a place where time and space converge.
In this book, Paulo writes about the journey he undertook between March and July 2006.
Below is an excerpt from Paulo’s blog article about this journey, and which is the subject matter of this book:
Between March and July 2006, letting himself be guided by signs, he travelled to various continents – Europe, Africa and Asia – on a journey through time and space, through past and present, in search of himself.
The novel starts with Paulo talking to his Master about the dissatisfaction in Paulo’s life and the stagnation of his spiritual growth. As per the suggestion from his Master, Paulo sets off onto a journey starting from Africa, and then to Europe and Asia via the Trans-Siberian Railway. Most of the novel or rather the book describes about the author’s experiences during the train journey he took with his publishers and a girl whom he meets in the journey.
The girl who insists that she will join the journey with him – as Paulo soon will find out that – is Hilal whom he loved five hundred years ago in a different incarnation. What follows is a very personal account where the author talks about the relationship with Hilal in the previous incarnation. Hilal in this life is a gifted violinist. Hilal is not the actual name of the real world character, but a changed name in the novel for privacy reasons.
Initially, Hilal’s joining the journey is not appreciated by the publishers, but eventually they understand that Paulo will be accompanied by her in the entire trip. Paulo will experience The Aleph for the first time in the train looking into the eyes of Hilal and discovers the details about the past life. The relation between the author and Hilal is expalined in detail.
Another important character in the book is Yao, the translator for Paulo in the journey. There are many interesting conversations between Yao and the author.
Paulo also talks in length about love and forgiveness.
Paulo describes about a technique he uses to know about his past lives. Though the technique seems to be very easy, and Paulo learned this while reading a book on the same subject, he warns us about not using it without really knowing what we are attempting at.
If you do not believe in reincarnation and related theories, then reading this book is not a good option for you.
I read Pualo Coelho not for his teachings, but for the beauty of few sentences that leave a lasting impression on me. Even though the novels are translated into English, the magic of his words in few places is overwhelming. My favorite book by Paulo is The Zahir. I have read this book two times.
Personally for me, The Zahir is really good when compared to The Aleph. But both are very different in the story-line and the subject matter too.
If you believe in reincarnation and related theories, you will enjoy reading this book.
Aleph is a really good read if you are a fan of Paulo Coelho’s previous books.