Conversations with the my master – The mystery

By Paulo Coelho

(from my notebook, August 1982)

– What are we doing on Earth?

– Truly? I don’t know. I have looked in many corners, in light and dark places; today, I am convinced that no one knows – Only God.

– That is not a good answer, for a master.

– It is an honest answer. I know many people who will explain to you in great detail, the meaning of our existence. Don’t believe them, these people are tied to an ancient language, and only believe in things which have an explanation.

– Does that mean there is no reason to live?

– You do not understand what I am saying. I said I don’t know the reason. But of course there is a reason we are here, and God knows it.

– Why doesn’t he reveal it to us?

– He reveals it to each of us, but in a language we often do not accept, because it has no logic – and we are too accustomed to directions and formulas.

“Our heart knows why we are here. Whoever listens to his heart, follows the signs, and lives his Personal Legend, will understand that he is taking part in something, even if he doesn’t comprehend it rationally. There is a tradition which says that, the second before our death, we realize the true reason for our existence. And at that moment, Hell and Heaven are born.

– I don’t understand.

– During this split second, Hell is to look back and know that we wasted an opportunity to honor God and dignify the miracle of life. Heaven, at that moment, is to be able to say: “I made some mistakes, but I was not a coward: I lived my life, and did what I had to do.” Both Hell and Heaven will accompany us for a long time, but not forever.

– How can I know that I am living my life?

– Because, instead of bitterness, you feel enthusiasm. That is the only difference. Apart from that, one must respect the Mystery, and humbly accept that God has a plan for us. A generous plan, which leads us towards His presence, and which justifies these millions of stars, planets, black holes, etc. which we see tonight, here in Oslo (we were in Norway) .

– It is very difficult to live without an explanation.

– Can you explain why man needs to give and receive love? No. And you live with that, don’t you? Not only do you live with it, but it is the most important thing in your life: love. And there is no explanation.

“In the same way, there is no explanation of life. But there is a reason we are here, and you must be humble enough to accept that. Trust what I say; the life of each human being has a meaning, although he commits the error of spending the greater part of his time on earth seeking an answer, and meanwhile forgets to live.

“I can give you an example from a time when I came close to understanding all this. I had arrived at a party to commemorate 50 years since my graduation from high school. There, at the school where I studied as a teenager, I found many friends. We drank, told the same jokes as half a century ago.

“At a certain moment, I looked out onto the schoolyard. There, I saw myself as a child, playing, looking at life with amazement and intensity. Suddenly, the child that I saw began to take form and came over to me.

“He looked at me and smiled. Then I understood that I hadn’t betrayed my youthful dreams. That the child I had once been was still proud of me. That the reason to live that I had as a child, was still alive in my heart.

“Try to live with the same intensity as a child. He doesn’t ask for explanations; he dives into each day as if it were a new adventure and, at night, sleeps tired and happy.”

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  1. Marie-Christine says:

    “Les enfants seuls savent ce qu’ils cherchent.”
    Antoine de St Exupery

  2. Marie-Christine says:

    I like the description of the child in that discussion you had with the master. It is exactly how I feel when I am going to write something funny or profound. There is a surge of energy that envelops you I guess, I start giggling if it’s funny and it’s like a theater opening in front of you, I don’t know where it is coming from, I just have to go onto the computer and it just comes out.I dont even write it down, I found if I do, I loose the thread of my thoughts. Amazing.

  3. chieko says:

    Sometimes I felt God would grant miracles for only children who are innocent and obedient. Today, I am glad to learn that God is still generous to me. that He is sending miracles to me now.

  4. Hope says:

    I am glad to see that this conversation took place in Norway, Oslo, as it is the place where i grew up.
    I was there under the stars, with the moon as my companion and how i wondered about life and its many facets, especially love. thank you for sharing, paulo.
    The stars are beautiful and bright in OSLO; I have been seeking refuge under the stars since i was a child.
    Love Hope

  5. Tania says:

    The radiance of children ,eyes always bright and having the gift of light -its keeping your inner child alive ,by love ,trust and understanding how to nurture this perfect creation ,with just the right balance of creativity ,logic and space .Blessings Tania
    Your master is so wise ,great and pure in limitless light !!

  6. Hope says:

    Dear Daniel, Hey back…:)
    Pleas accept my humble opinion, I do not see your truth to be lost rather you are living it without being aware. I think being a rebellion is a good thing, as I see myself as a poster child for rebellious behaviour.I have been a fighter my whole life and sought out my own truth rather what was imposed on me.Do we see our own truth, maybe not…. it is a part of the challenge to discover it layer by layer, however it is our truth and can never be lost to us. The truth we often seek, we seek in wrong places or do not accept the shape or form it comes in.
    So don’t give up hope yet, I find you very courageous. Love hope
    Dear Agnieszka, yes……you have observed one of my greatest challenges.
    What is harder? To love or to allow yourself to be loved?…….. I find the second part quite hard. In the words of our beautiful Paulo, ” I am me, but I am also my circumstances” I am a fighter always been, always will be I suppose. I am more apprehensive towards love, more then fear, because I have felt every aspect of fear, i know its many dark corners, it has taken me to hell and back but I have also discovered its limitations, it can be controlling and consuming but it is limited, and not that great after all.
    Love does not have these limitations, it just is…..pure, everlasting
    I have greater expectation of love; I need it to fight for me…..
    And it pains me to say this, but love would have to fight me for my own heart…..
    As for life, I wake up with more questions unanswered then questions answered,
    Life is a wonder…… I live, laugh, play and dance, and today I embrace its many mysteries, it makes me an adventurer….after all it is all about the journey rather than the destination.
    Love to you all, Especially you Paulo. Hope

  7. wanbliska says:

    Thank you Yajna for your thought. I’m happy and then scared. It depends on the hours… :)
    And what about you?


  8. wanbliska says:

    “Don’t say that love, is what’s stronger,
    cause life is still moving,
    when a love passed away”
    Daniel Balavoine.

  9. wanbliska says:

    More than humble, that idea is asking us to be subjected to.


    “- How can I know that I am living my life?

    – Because, instead of bitterness, you feel enthusiasm.”

    How to keep enthusiasm, when we live in a country directed by a dictator?
    By living your life. Ok…
    Indeed he won’t take my heart, nor my words. Though the truth gets me palsy.

  10. Que bonito serí­a encontrarse con uno mismo cuando eramos niños, serí­a para mi misma como una hermana mayor, me darí­a toda la comprensión que necesitara ya que los tiempos han cambiado y las cosas se ven con mayor amplitud de mente.
    Viajar al pasado ¡que fascinante! poder cambiar para bien cosas ocurridas, creo que algún dia lo haremos, la realidad siempre supera la ficción.
    Un beso Paulo para ti y otro para J.

  11. Monika says:

    Seems I am not always humble enough, but I never will forget to live! After a long search I also believe to know what my personal legend is and I am following it.
    In deed I have already reached a lot and I think I am not a hopeless case. Tell me some more of your conversations with the master and I mayebe will succeed one day in finding the rest!

    P.S. Children ask very hard for explanations, because they also have the great wish to understand the world they are living in. They do not give up too soon if the answer cannot be given – but the difference is, they are not frustraded so fast by this circumstance and do not begin to doubt at once.

  12. Agnieszka says:

    Dear Hope..sweet dreams..
    yet….being the bird…with wild heart…is not easy..
    sometimes you…have to..touch the ground..and tame it..or nobody would love you..

    Dear Yajna..thank you..I hope you’re having a great day yourself.


  13. Daniel says:

    When I was around 15 years old, I started rebelling against everything that I had learned up to that point in my life. I became embedded in a search for the truth. The truth in every aspect of life. It is ironic that Paulo chose to use this passage in his blog now, because everywhere that I look, the “truth” seems to contradict a previously learned “truth”… So, I guess you can say that I already decided that the truth is lost… Maybe It survived in bits and pieces, but as a whole, it does not exsist… But, I except that now, and with this passage, I think that I can except it that much more… It doesn’t mean that im hopeless or mad or disappointed… I am content.
    Thank you Paulo.
    And just wanna say hey to hope…HEY!!! :)

  14. Clover says:

    So nice. I knew why it had turned heaven or hell after that split second, I pictured myself in the moment and knew.
    I love reading you Paulo.

    Smiling again.



  15. Hope says:

    Hey Yajna i am at peace today, despite hectic times in exams and studies, but i find this site to be my Oasis and people like you feed my soul. thank you for taking the moment to think of us, I Hope you are kepping your heart in the light, love hope
    Agnieszka i am going to sleep now, but will be taking the words you wrote with me into my dreams, i smile when i read it. tell me do you see your self as this different bird? because if you do, then we are similar in our differences. I find myself often to be a bird of a different colour who sings a different tune then those around me. it is good to know that i am not alone. My heart is truly like a wildhorse, but i try not to tame it rather just run with it.

    “Hope” is the thing with feathers -that perches in the soul –
    and sings the tune without the words
    And never stops at all.

    Love to you all, Hope
    Paulo, Thank you!

  16. Yajna says:

    Dearest Paulo and friends,

    This made me smile.
    Beautifully said.
    I see why he was your master, Paulo.

    Friends, how are you all today? Paulo?
    Sometimes we get so engrossed in writing our opinions, we forget simple things, like asking each other how we are today…

    Thank you for being

  17. Agnieszka says:

    The meaning of
    being….a child..yes..

    Maxence Fermine in “Snowflake” – writes:
    “There are two kinds of people; those who live, play and die, and those whose only occupation is keeping the equilibrium on the edge of life.
    There are actors and there are heavenly dancers.”

    What if you are the second kind of people? Does it bring you comfort? Does it bring you peace?
    No, not really. You look around, everybody is satisfied, at peace, to some extend of course, yet you….you still want something, even though you have so much, nobody around you have, and they look at you like you are…yes..ungrateful, like you are…capricious maybe. And you, yourself feel that you maybe even want to be like them, just to have this peace inside, but…you are..different. You are like a want to be want to dance in sky…you want to feel everything with your whole being,…you.. There are moments when you feel free, when you feel this harmony with nature, when you feel like flying, dancing to the music of your heart. But your heart is a stranger sometimes, takes you where you’re not supposed to go, makes you crazy, makes you lost.
    Life is like the wind; calm, quiet, gentle sometimes…, and violent, intense..unpredictable..few moments later;
    it can dance the waltz and it can do the tango.
    But how long can you dance the tango?
    What if you out of breath, do you still want to go on? ..until you lose conscious..

    hmm…touching…feeling..emotions of the world..


  18. Love says:

    Then my True Will would be to keep myself as closer to my child as possible, but, in the meantime, both my child and I would be Living. The energy of Love would be within me and within Him, whether living phisically close or not.

  19. Love says:

    Last night I couldn´t sleep, I couldn´t.

    I awoke in the middle of the night. Very scared because, I was having a bad dream. A dream with evil spirits from the darkness. It was an awful dream but now the only thing I can remember (almost) is that, when I awoke, I was so frightened. I had to pray over and over again Our Father and Hail Mary. When I decided to get up, still in the dark, I had to turn on the light. Then I went out and, the bright of the Moon and the Stars, took definetely away the dread I was feeling. I always feel protected while looking at the Stars, and the Moon. I always feel that as long as the Bright of my Moon is there, I will be always well protected, despite of the dark around. The Mother is always here, the only thing is that I want to feel Her even more. Being even closer to Her, in Her arms.

    If my Soul Mate were here, right now, I would ask him/her: “Can you look after my child (whether human or not) while I go out, to do some things that I have to do, please?”

    I can only ask to look after my child to my human Soul Mate.