Click on these links to see photos and read my posts about Elizabeth Gilbert’s books and philosophy:
Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert [Book Review]
Elizabeth Gilbert is the quintessenial role model for leveraging a person’s talents to learn how to survive, thrive, and find joy. When life handed her the lemons of a bitter divorce, she squeezed those lemons into the stratosphere of best-selling books.
Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India, and Indonesia was on the best seller lists for over a year. She’s been on Oprah, and Julia Roberts will star in the movie.
In true Pretty Woman tradition, she rescued herself before she met the charming Brazilian “prince” Felipe.
Eat, Pray, Love [the movie] is fairly faithful to the book. It brings the book to life with many scenes filmed where the actual adventure took place. The ashram is different, but the pizzeria in Naples is the Pizzeria da Michele, which Elizabeth Gilbert put on the map.
The photography is magnificently dreamy and beautiful. I was shocked, however, by the levels of smog ~ especially in India.
Committed [Book Review] by Elizabeth Gilbert
Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage is the natural sequel to Elizabeth Gilbert’s perenially best-selling Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia.
Eat, Pray, Love is about the path she took to recover from her divorce. Ms. Gilbert’s fans were delighted to learn she’d met “Felipe,” a dashing Brazilian gemstone importer. He too was left broke and broken after his divorce.
“Felipe” visited her in the United States for a couple of years in 90-day increments ~ the length of a visa.
The arrangement worked quite well for the couple until ”Felipe” was prevented from entering the United States by a Homeland Security officer at the Dallas airport. Essentially, INS got out the shotgun and told them to marry if they wanted to live together.
I loved the book and recommend it highly for anyone who desires a mature, enduring relationship filled with intimacy and unconditional love. The book is loaded with thought-provoking tidbits that could spark interesting conversation and dialogue about marriage with the person you love.
My greatest disappointment about the book is that there are no photos.
Buy this book. Not on Kindle. Hardcover. You will want to read it more than once. You won’t want to deny yourself the sensory pleasure and elegant design of Elizabeth Gilbert’s brilliantly written The Signature of All Things. It is one of the most enchanting books I’ve ever read. I savored every word so much that I’m having a hard time sharing the intimately decadent experience of reading it.
I didn’t expect to like this book. It’s historical fiction rooted in botany. The term “signature of all things” refers to divine code or DNA. How can that possibly be interesting? Oh, my!
Do you sometimes feel like everybody else has the answers? Like everybody else got the Cliff Notes to Life 101?
Join the club. Elizabeth Gilbert is one of us. She told the audience at Oprah’s magazine’s 10th anniversary celebration in New York City:
This is the odd situation I find myself now in. . .people think I’ve got my life together. . .they think I can help them get their lives together which is a really odious misconception. . .We all long for that to be true ~ we long to have there be somebody who has solved life. . .we dream of that. . .we come here to events like this to meet those people. I can guarantee you that every single person who you are going to be hearing speak this weekend is intimately and perhaps very recently is familiar with failure. What keeps them here is that they are pioneers of continuing on. . .
You learn to smile even in your liver?
This smile will make you beautiful woman. This will give you power to be very pretty. You can use this power ~ pretty power! ~ to get what you want in life.
When Elizabeth Gilbert, author of the perpetually best-selling Eat, Pray, Love, was on Oprah, she suggested we think about what we really, really, really want. One “really” isn’t enough to tap into our passions. What do we really, really, really want?
Joseph Campbell popularized the ancient concept of a hero’s journey. The hero’s quest begins with a dark night of the soul. Once the hero crosses the threshold, there is no turning back. The hero must move forward. Heros’ journeys are the stories of humanity which have always been for and about men. Women get consolation prizes and play supporting roles. Women don’t get to be the hero. This sends a clear message that women are here to be caregivers who should be happy to sublimate their own needs.
This was the role assigned to Ms. Gilbert’s mother. Her mother’s generation kept the community tightly knit. Their talents were untested, became burdens, and metastasized.
Meanwhile, the hero comes home but doesn’t weave his experiences into the community. This results in a loss of the soul. When women give and men strive, neither is enough. Ms. Gilbert believes we need to create a new archetype to weave together giving and striving:
DO IT. Don’t let anybody or anything stop you. Come back to the village. Use your life to serve others. Make it possible for others to have their adventures. Wherever you are standing is your village.
Michael took much of the mystery out of Buddhism for me and simplified the philosophy in terms I can comprehend:
. . .personal and social transformation. . .begins with people taking responsibility for their own lives and gradually projecting their increased wisdom, courage and compassion into their surroundings. . .Buddhism empowers us to reach our full potential.
World peace is achieved as people fill their lives with compassion and purpose.