Beyond one’s own limits

By Paulo Coelho

An archer was out walking near a Hindu monastery known for the austerity of its teachings when he saw the monks in the garden, drinking and having fun.
‘How cynical you seekers after God’s path are,’ he said out loud. ‘You claim to place great importance on discipline and then get drunk on the quiet.’
‘If you were to shoot a hundred arrows one after the other, what would happen to your bow?’ asked the oldest of the monks.
‘My bow would break,’ replied the archer.
‘If someone forces himself to go beyond his own limits, then he will break his will,’ said the monk. ‘If you do not balance work with rest, you will lose your enthusiasm, drain yourself of energy and not achieve very much at all.’

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  1. Damien says:

    Bonjour Lena,

    3 ans de souffrances après, je suis devenu a moitié fou,
    Je t’aime tant, j’ai besoin de toi.
    reviens moi vite sinon je me meurs.
    Tu es la femme de ma vie.
    on a tant de choses a partager ensemble.
    fait moi rire comme tu sais si bien le faire,
    je ne peux pas t’oublier
    je ne sais que t’aimer
    je me sens si seul sans toi.
    Je t’aime encore et encore et encore
    plus que tout jour et que toute nuit.
    J’ai envie de te serrer dans mes bras,
    de dormir près de toi, de te lover dans mes bras,
    je veux que tu sois près de moi,
    prendre ta main et ne plus jamais la lí¢cher.
    Je serais ta liberté.

    de tout mon cÅ“ur, mon amour et ma dévotion.

  2. MyzPax says:

    Tango, fado, gospel music were born in “not recommended” places,
    and look how soulful they are
    Pearls grow inside dark shells,
    and look how beautiful they are
    Seeds are thown underground
    and look how much life they spread
    Jesus was born amongst animals
    and He is Love and Light.

    I loved all the comme(n)ts today

    Paulo, I love your soul


  3. Liisa says:

    No human being can only practise discipline unless he is acting against his heart. What’s the point anyway…

    Here’s for the love and joy of living!!

  4. raj says:

    Sparkling and happy throughout the year 2008 everybody..
    Balance brings Blessing in Life.


  5. Leaf says:

    Love can never be broken
    if one needs a rest then one is working/walking without enough love-joy in one’s heart

    time-love-god is infinite
    joy is a constant companion, sometimes calm sometimes wild
    if joy leaves the moment
    wander or wait
    but do not suffer by allowing others to misunderstand

    go(o)d wants us to enjoy all our life
    not just when the public is not around
    he wants us to enjoy our work

    Jesus said; come to me all who are weary and need rest, my yoke is easy my burden light
    he offered us rest
    not a rest from doing his will
    he paid the price of being misunderstood
    not just on the cross but through churches today still
    he was also called a glutton and a drunk

    …..The man went home and started drinking and dancing
    then he just carried on drinking
    he became destitute and an alcholic
    his will was indeed broken
    but he learned his lesson
    and one day began to make himself a better, stronger bow
    and he was not afraid to test it to it’s limits
    (he also carried 175 arrows because he knew it was that good lol!!)

    What is having a rest, anyway?
    I thought that’s what I get when I sleep.


  6. Damien says:

    Dear Paulo,

    you’re so right and I think that I really need holydays.
    Thanks for your wisdom all of you.

  7. Samya says:

    I always thought that when you are pursuing your destiny, you are never tired?
    Recreation is only for those who are toiling away at something that is not needed in their lives.

  8. Damien says:


  9. fLUXman says:

    bo0om paulo…,
    to be natural with yourself, and let your mind take you naturally ,
    we all evolve at the same rate,
    don’t you feel the resonance of a mass of individual vibrations tresconating ?
    happy year every year,

  10. marie says:

    Dear Paulo,

    “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” is what my mother born in 1905 used to tell me !


  11. Lena says:

    Great words Mr Coelho!

    Night and Day in harmony
    Life is breathing endlessly
    Take the time to smile and laugh
    You’ll need it to survive on your path

    I think this is the one and only recipe that guarantees a long and healthy life. There are just too many out there who are over consuming, over-eating, over-praying and over-everything…

    My survival strategy is to have a daily rest peacely and quitely in the mountains. That makes smile and laugh comes easier :) And I try to do my best not to over-do things….

    L :)

  12. A.V.C. says:

    Yes, but even straying is part of one’s path. No one ever escapes or breaks one’s True Will.

  13. Tania Chilby says:

    yes sometimes we must rest and take a detour in order to better off . Dance ,drink and be merry is just what is prescribed for those who have to keep there wills intact,to loose enthusiasm would be like taking a last breath…A lesson to be reminded of often ,when we get too busy …Thankyou I have so many dreams to sail to ,I need to keep my boat in good working order…Blessings Tania

  14. agnieszka says:

    Dear Paulo,

    Holy words! – Everything needs balance!

    Like a rain and a sun,
    like a tear and a smile,
    there’s day and there’s night,
    Do you mind?