I read Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert last year sometime. I enjoyed it tremendously, but once time passed I found that I only seemed to remember the eat part (Ahh…Italian pastries and pizza) and the love part. I mean who could forget the section on masturbation? But all the stuff in between, well, I remember that it was insightful, but I couldn’t quite tell you exactly what I was blown away by.
This Thursday we’re having a special edition Moon Lounge at Sol Yoga where will be discussing the book, so I had to re-read it to come up with questions more interesting than the same eleven ones that you find online. I don’t know about you, but often times I read a book that stimulates my thinking and opens my eyes to various ideas only to close the back cover and in a few weeks forget most of it completely. I’m not sure if this is a character flaw or if I just need to do more sudokus to keep my neural connections intact but as I was rereading this book, I kept thinking, How in the hell did I forget all of this?
How did I forget that the Catholic nun told Liz, “Guilt’s just your ego’s way of tricking you into thinking that you’re making moral progress. Don’t fall for it, my dear.”
How did I forget when Liz asks Richard from Texas about his ex-wife. She asks, “Are you two still close?” in which he replies, “Nah. She thinks I changed my name to Mother-fucker.”
I definitely remembered that she gained 23 pounds during her four months in Italy, but how could it slip my mind that she saw her weight gain as a magnificent expansion of herself? Her widening ass was not something to fear, but simply a metaphor for her journey to expand her horizons and find herself. She was moving to an Ashram once she left Rome. Her ass would go back to it’s normal size eventually so instead of fretting she simply said, Pass the pasta.
And finally how did I fail to recall that Ketut told her that heaven and hell were the same place?!?! One you reach by going seven levels upward and the other you reach by going seven levels downward. Ketut explains that the destination is the same regardless, however we choose how we’re going to get there and how painful our particular journey will be. It would be similar to planning a cross-country trip to California and deciding between booking a flight or crawling there on your hands and knees.
You would think that all of this thought stimulation would have me begging you to read Eat, Pray, Love this summer (that’s totally up to you and if you live nearby and have a better memory than me, feel free to drop by our book club this Thursday).
What I would strongly suggest is that you pull down from your shelf your favorite books from now until Labor Day. Why fill up the tank and drive to the book store when you can save your coin and simply re-read books you love that are collecting dust. I bet you’ll rediscover lots of wisdom that you’ve completely forgotten.