Archives for November 2009

Consumers

I remember that sometime this year, I posted in my blog a complain about an insurance company. Sometimes, some companies drives us crazy. So, this week, let’s share with each other, which companies where are having a really bad services. Please remember that you’ll be responsible for what you post here. Having said that, to improve their respect to the consumers, sometimes we need to go public.

Thank you very much and this blog is open for you,
Paulo

Quote of the Week

Laws control the weak. Honesty controls the strong.

The readers and my books

You are more than welcome to participate in a workshop on the titles above, discussing with other readers your opinions. In some months from now I will add other titles.
Click on the covers for each Workshop or here to start the discussion.
Love,
Paulo

Vocíªs sí£o bem-vindos a participar do workshop sobre os tí­tulos acima, discutindo com outros leitores suas opiniíµes. Daqui alguns meses colocaremos novos tí­tulos.

Clique nas capas para acessar cada workshop ou aqui para comeí§ar a discussí£o.

Com amor,
Paulo

UD es bienvenido para participar de el workshop dedicado a los tí­tulos presentados arriba; y igualmente de discutir con los otros lectores sus opiniones. En algunos meses pondré otros tí­tulos.

Pinche en las cubiertas para cada workshop o aquí­ para empezar la discusión.

Con amor,
Paulo

Changing your mind

As you noticed that last week I posted here “Por que odeio Paulo Coelho”. The idea came during a conversation with a friend of mine, who was talking to someone who “hates” me and my friend asked: “why?” The more the person explained, the more she got confused. While reading 709 posts I got to the same conclusion.
They hate because someone said: you should hate it. I was also caught in this trap earlier in my life, and I can remember two cases: first it was with “The Little Prince”. Everybody said, Oh it’s a very superficial book. The second time was “The Prophet” (Gibran), also because “too easy to understand”. I waste some years before reading these two masterpieces.

So I would like you to share your similar experiences. Something/someone that you had a lot prejudices and later on you said; ” it’s much better then I thought, I should have my opinion instead of having other’s opinions.”

Thank you very much,
Paulo

Quote of the Week

In true love you want other person’s good. In false love you want the other person.

Talking with the devil

The man is admiring the sunset on a beautiful beach, beside his wife, enjoying well-deserved holidays. Everything seems absolutely in place, when all of a sudden, from the bottom of his heart there comes a nice, friendly voice that asks him a difficult question:

“Are you happy?”

“Yes, I am,” he answers.

“Then look around you carefully.”

“Who are you?”

“I am the devil. And you can’t be happy, because you know that sooner or later tragedy can appear and upset your world. Look carefully around you, and you will understand that virtue is just one of the faces of terror”.

And the devil began to show everything that was happening on the beach. The excellent family man who at that very moment was packing and helping the children to get dressed would like to have an affair with his secretary, but was terrified at how his wife would react.

The wife who would like to have a job and her independence, but was terrified at how her husband would react.

The children who behaved well, terrified by the idea of punishment.

The girl reading a book, alone under her beach umbrella, pretending to be casual, while her soul was terrified at the possibility of never finding the love of her life.

The young man with the racket exercising his body and terrified at having to live up to his parents’ expectations.

The old man who did not smoke or drink saying that he felt much better that way, when the truth was that the terror of death whispered like the wind in his ears.

The couple running past, their feet splashing the water where the waves broke on the beach, all smiles, and hidden terror saying that they would grow old, uninteresting, invalid.

The rich man who stopped his speedboat in everyone’s view, waving and smiling and sunburned, and filled with terror because he could lose all his money at any moment.

The owner of the hotel who came out to greet his guests just when the sun was setting, trying to make them all happy and full of cheer, and demanding miracles of his accountants, with terror in his soul because he knew that no matter how honest he was, the men in the government would always discover all the flaws they wanted in his accounts.

Terror in each one of those persons on that lovely beach at a sunset that would take your breath away. The terror of remaining alone, the terror of the dark that filled their imagination with devils, the terror of doing something not included in the manual of good behavior, the terror of God’s judgment, the terror of the comments of men, the terror of justice that punished any fault, the terror of the injustice that left the guilty free and threatening. The terror of risking and losing, the terror of winning and having to live with the envy of others, the terror of loving and being rejected, the terror of asking for a raise, of accepting an invitation, of going to unknown places, of not managing to speak a foreign language, of not having the ability to impress others. The terror of growing old, of dying, of being noticed because of your defects, of not being noticed because of your qualities, of not being noticed neither for your defects nor your qualities.

“I hope that this has made you calmer,” concluded the devil. “After all, you are not alone in your fears.”

“Please don’t go away until you hear what I have to say,” answered the man. “We have the incredible capacity to detect pain, remorse, wounds – or terror, as you prefer to call it. But my father once told me the story of an apple-tree that was so laden with apples that its branches could not sing in the wind. Someone passing by asked why it did not try to call attention like all the other trees did. ‘My fruits are my best advertisement,’ answered the apple-tree.

“Of course, I am no different from anyone else, and my heart is filled with many fears. But despite everything, the fruits of my life speak for me, and if some day a tragedy happens, I know that I have not spent my life without taking risks.”

And the devil, disappointed, left him to try to scare other – weaker – people.

UN: network of men leaders to combat violence against women

24 November 2009 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today marked the 10th anniversary of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women by launching a Network of Men Leaders, a major new initiative bringing together current and former politicians, activists, religious and community figures to combat the global pandemic.
“These men will add their voices to the growing global chorus for action,” he said, noting that 70 per cent of women experience in their lifetime some form of physical or sexual violence from men, the majority from husbands, intimate partners or someone they know.

Resources for the Fund, which gives grants to support innovative regional, local and national initiatives, fall drastically short for meeting a vast demand, with grant requests totalling $857 million received just for 2009. To address this gap, the target of raising an annual $100 million for the Fund by 2015 has been set by the Secretary-General as an objective of his UNiTE campaign.

By 2015, the UNiTE campaign aims to achieve the following five goals worldwide: adopt and enforce national laws to address and punish all forms of violence against women and girls; adopt and implement multi-sectoral national action plans; strengthen data collection on the prevalence of violence against women and girls; increase public awareness and social mobilization; and address sexual violence in conflict.

Members of the new Network include: Juan Carlos Areán, Programme Director of the Family Violence Prevention Fund; Gary Barker, International Centre for Research on Women; Ted Bunch, Co-founder of the National Association of Men and Women Committed to Ending Violence against Women; Brazilian novelist and UN Messenger of Peace Paulo Coelho; and Italian Foreign Minister Franco Fattini.

Others are: former Colombian President and Secretary General of the Organization of American States Cesar Gaviria Trujillo; former Chilean president Ricardo Lagos; Andrew Levack, Co-chair of MenEngageAlliance; Todd Minerson, Executive Director of the White Ribbon Campaign; Emmanuel Ochora of Gulu Youth for Action in Uganda; Dean Peacock, founder of Building Partnerships to End Men’s Violence; Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Rodrí­guez Zapatero; Norwegian Justice and Police Minister Knut Storberget; and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa.

Saint Joseph’s Party 2010

Update December 16

a] I am going to post the 10 questions before the end of this week, around 6:00 PM (Paris time).
b] five of the questions will be about my books, five will be general questions
c] I will annouce in the same day in my blog, Twitter and Facebook.
d] please read the posts below, to understand what an “invitation” means.
e] My friends Andreas Salcher, Paul von Austria, Rosa de los Vientos are helping me. The party will take place in Melk Abbey, but of course you don’t need to be a Catholic to attend!
f] no press is allowed. But personal photos and book signings are more than welcome.

Update: November 22

a] As I do every year, God willing I will host my annual party, on March 19, 2010, this time in the Austrian countryside (about 1 hr. from Vienna)
b] my guests are: my close friends (90), regulars from this blog (10 people) and 20 readers/followers from one of the social communities I am currently participating. Total: 120 guests.
c] In the previous parties (Spain and France), the selection was made on the first come/first served basis. But the selection was made in less than 1 minute, as I immediately got the answers, and the main factor was the person being connected to the computer at the moment I posted the invitation. As now I have over 1 million friends in all the communities, I decided to hold a contest.
d] the contest will be a series of 10 questions. The first 20 to answer all of them will be invited.
e] by “invited” I mean: to say one prayer together, then have dinner, fun, and music. I am not covering costs of travelling and hotels.
f] no journalists allowed. But of course all the guests can take as many photos as they want. And I will gladly sign any books they bring to be signed.
g] I will post the questions before the end of the year. And I will let everybody know, using Twitter and Facebook, when and at what time I will do this
h] I am going to post this page again at least twice in the next two weeks.

Below you have Rudolf (Scorpions) and I having a lot of fun this year. You also have the text posted for the 2008 party. Please note that the rules are different this year.

Having fun in Saint Joseph’s Party 2009

Invitation for Saint Joseph’s Party 2008

A Sunday afternoon, one year ago, I was reading my blog and thinking how intelligent my readers are. So I thought: why not invite some of them to the party I held every March 19, in honor of my patron, Saint Joseph? Acting on an impulse (as I normally do) I posted the invitation for 10 people on the first come/first served basis. We got over 500 emails, and the first were from different parts of the world. The party was to be held in the middle of the Road to Santiago, (Puente la Reina, Spain).
Then I asked myself: did these readers understand the invitation? It is only for a party, I am not paying the air ticket, hotel, etc. And it is not easy to get to Puente la Reina.
I sent a second email to them, and all said that they fully understood. Thanks to this, I had the pleasure to meet wonderful people, most of them now in my top friends in myspace, and all of them very close to my heart.
You can see the photos of the party at Flickr
That was when I only had a WordPress blog. I still have a blog, but I am now also in Myspace and Facebook. Meaning: when I release this invitation, it will be read by close to 20.000 people.
Lotteries don’t work. And this 19th March, the party will be held in Paris: I am hiring a boat so we can have a good seated dinner, an amazing sightseeing of Paris by night, music and dance to complete the fun.
But the boat has a limitation of 120 people. Considering that I am inviting 90 personal friends (that attend this party for close to 10/20 years), we have 30 places for the readers.
Therefore:
A] if you want to come, please send an email to […] with a link to your page or your blog.
B] please take into consideration that March 19th is in the middle of the Holy Week, and may be difficult to find air tickets and hotels.
C] put in the subject the month you are born, and the social community ( for example: myspace/ April or blog/August)
D] I will select randomly one reader for each month (and we can squeeze two tables, so we can have 36 readers, 12 from each community – Myspace, Facebook, Blog)
E] So, if you REALLY can come, send your email during this weekend. If you don’t hear back from me, that means that either you are in the waiting list (the extra guests) or we need to find another opportunity to meet.
F] If you can come, you understand that the invitation is only for the party, and for one person.
Love,
Paulo

Quote of the Week

Haters are confused admirers who can’t understand why everybody else likes you.

Gossip

I was reading a very interesting article about gossip. Of course, gossip is something very dangerous. But at the same time it is used to locate people in this world. Somehow they can establish comparisons, feel better, and dont feel lost. So I’d like to hear your opinion on gossips.
Thank you,
Paulo

DON’T WORRY ABOUT YOUR ENGLISH. BUT IF YOU FEEL MORE COMFORTABLE, POST IN YOUR MOTHER TONGUE (PORTUGUES, ESPANOL, FRANçAIS, ETC.).

“The warrior’s life” by Kealan

Kealan sent the link, and I believe it is a very personal and interesting review. He refers to my biography “The warrior’s life” http://bit.ly/19Pqry recently published in English, Spanish (El |Mago) , Portuguese (O Mago) (other languages next year)

I asked myself the question what I would gain from reading the book ‘A Warrior’s Life.’ The book which has just been released in Ireland, written by Fernando Morais depicting the life of Paulo Coelho from his birth up until the 24th of August 2008 (Ironically I wrote to Paulo the very next day as I was tempted to visit him in Lourdes for his birthday – but instead I was personally invited to the next two St. Joseph’s parties both held in Paris).(Note: I always invite 20 readers from my social communities, based on a contest)

I bought the book on a cold damp day in November 2009. As soon as bought the book I sat in a café and read the first few pages! After coffee and a scone I went home and sat in my bedroom and read until 4am.
I got up today at 2.30pm and began to read again until 9pm when I completed reading the last page, this time sitting in the kitchen drinking coffee and having the occasional smoke outside (where I fear a negative presence I stalking the past few days – I must pray more).

Was I shocked by what was written in this wonderfully accounted history of a man’s life? Yes and no…

When I read some of the texts I thought no way – but as I mentally digested the sentences I understood that it was a different point in time in a different country. I though for the most part that it was quiet an interesting life to lead and I am very envious of Coelho’s magnetism with women & of course the fact that he is rich! Coelho’s life for the most part is a romantic tragedy.

The mental illness & looking for due glory – as far as I can analyse these factors have both got their roots embroiled in Paulo’s birth. The man who was born dead; this would have unconsciously effected the growing mind of a child leading to anxiety causing – asthma, panic attacks, OCD and depression/suicide (along with mounting anxiety in later life). The technical term is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (Freud states that a neurotic is incapable of enjoying life). Looking for due glory? Coelho expected something from life – he was after all saved from death by St. Joseph – his near death experience may have triggered the idea that he is due something more in life.

How do I know this? In 1986 while Paulo Coelho was walking the road of St. James I was three years of age & trapped under a cast iron gate unconscious with a fractured scull and sitting on deaths door. Three days later I woke from a coma as bright as rain. As I grew older my parents told me of the thirty-five Catholic Nuns who prayed to god for three days as I lay in the hospital. Of course I have my own ideas of self greatness and that one day I will have my name in lights! So I can understand the struggle of being esoteric and trying to bring something wonderful for people to read.

The sex was not surprising. All I can say is lucky you! Although I would not advise masturbating into the light!

The drugs – again not surprising & I’m glad that somebody has shared their experience and publicly admits to have nothing more to do with that type of lifestyle.

I was most surprised that the book developed out into Paulo’s intimate relationships.
I did not expect to find a chapter relating to his current partner, but in saying that, I was enthralled by Christina’s story… Wow! and the stories of the other women in his life. Another aspect which, and I cringe to use this word again, surprised me, was the extensive diaries Paulo kept; amazing… truly amazing. I feel without the use of these diaries the book would not have had the edge we were all looking for while reading. The personal thoughts and activities kept over the decades.

On a last note – I have been fighting internally my involvement with the paulocoelhoblog for sometime now. In an ever expanding cynical world, I as a writer, as a fan/fanfictionalist, as somebody participating – do not want to be seen as said in the Winner Stands Alone ‘a jaded hanger on.’ I do not want to covet anything – I have learned, laughed, cried, participated and met.
Before I became involved in the blog I had my own esoteric experiences in life, like may others, but the hands of time guided me towards this light – and what a wonderful light. Now as I see myself at 27 years old, no present friends or relationships, financially ruined and living at home in my parent’s house – I am suffering to fill a void which I can only fill myself…through writing.

P.S. Fernando; if you ever read this – thank you for a wonderfully gripping book. I enjoyed your style of writing & you are a great story teller. I did not loose interest once!

_____________________________________

JUST TO CLARIFY:
a] I don’t earn rights from this book.
b] Fernando Morais took 5 years to write it, and he used my personal files
c] by mutual agreement, I only read the book when it was published in Portuguese
d] I must confess that I was a little shocked with my life, but I survived

Why do we need to look younger?

There is nothing wrong with beauty, but, why do we need to look younger then we are? Botox, silicon, gyms… Gyms are ok if you want to make some exercices but… body building? I have some friends that spend hours in the gym just to pretend to be younger.

We can be younger at heart and if you accept that, with age comes some changes in our body, we should be very happy, because we are getting older.The other option of getting older is to die.

So, i’m looking for your opinion on why do this world ask to societies to pretend everybody is younger then he/she really is.

Thank you,
Paulo

DON’T WORRY ABOUT YOUR ENGLISH. BUT IF YOU FEEL MORE COMFORTABLE, POST IN YOUR MOTHER TONGUE (PORTUGUES, ESPANOL, FRANçAIS, ETC.).

Quote of the Week

We need to create a new revolution, and to do that, don’t waste your life: stop pleasing people, and become who you always wanted to be.

Sunday reflexion: Ithaca by K. Kavafis

Ithaca is a greek island generally identified as the home of Odysseus, whose delayed return to the island is the subject of Homer’s the Odyssey.

As you set out for Ithaca
hope your road is a long one,
full of adventure, full of discovery.
Laistrygonians, Cyclops,
angry Poseidon – don’t be afraid of them:
you’ ll never find things like that on your way
as long as you keep your thoughts raised high,
as long as a rare excitement
stirs your spirit and your body.
Laistrygonians, Cyclops,
wild Poseidon – you won’t encounter them
unless you bring them along inside your soul,
unless your soul sets them up in front of you.

Hope your road is a long one.
May there be many summer mornings when,
with what pleasure, what joy,
you enter harbours you’re seeing for the first time;
may you stop at Phoenician trading stations
to buy fine things,
mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
sensual perfume of every kind –
as many sensual perfumes as you can;
and may you visit many Egyptian cities
to learn and go on learning from their scholars.

Keep Ithaca always in your mind.
Arriving there is what you’re destined for.
But don’t hurry the journey at all.
Better if it lasts for years,
so you’re old by the time you reach the island,
wealthy with all you’ve gained on the way,
not expecting Ithaca to make you rich.

Ithaca gave you the marvelous journey.
Without her you wouldn’t have set out.
She has nothing left to give you now.

And if you find her poor, Ithaca won’t have fooled you.
Wise as you will have become, so full of experience,
you’ll have understood by then this is the meaning of Ithaca.


K. Kavafis, (Greek Κωνσταντίνος Π. Καβάφης) (April 29, 1863 – April 29, 1933)

Demo

Paulo Coelho has a Live Q&A with fans This Friday!

1 – Click on the big red button called “Join Event”

a / Click on “Register for VOKLE”
b / Enter your First Name, Last Name, Email, Password, Postal Code, Gender, BirthDate
c / Click on “Register to VOKLE”!

2 – A new screen appears to congrat you with a big red button called “ENTER EVENT”, click on it.

3 – As I am answering only written questions, skip Cam and Mic in the next screen

4 – Now, the little window will be fullscreen and you’ll enter to the Live Event.
This full screen is in two part, the top and the bottom.
You have my live streaming video and “ASK A QUESTION” button on the top.
You have Twitter streaming and Chat between visitors on the bottom.

5 – When you want to ask a question to me :
a/ Click on the big red button called “ASK A QUESTION” on the top – right side of the screen.
b/ Now, 2 buttons appears at the bottom of the screen.
c/ Click on the big white button called “Text”.
d/ Type your question in the box and click on the button “SUBMIT”.
e/ Your question is now submitted, click on the button “DONE”.
f/ Now, you return to the Twitter & Chat at the bottom, and you await for your question transferred to me by Supi.

Supi will manage the event. So, if you have technical questions, you can enter them in the chat, he’ll reply to you. But I won’t check the chat window. Therefore, don’t ask your questions there, I’ll only reply your questions submitted from the “ASK A QUESTION” button.
IF YOU ENCOUNTER ANY DIFFICULTIES, PLEASE LEAVE YOUR COMMENT HERE

Who are we? / Quem somos? / Quién somos?

1] Age and country / idade e pais
2] Favorite music / musica favorita
3] Book you are currently reading / leitura atual
4] Did you ever read any of my books? / Voce já leu algum livro meu?

OBRIGADO. THANK YOU. GRACIAS. MERCI

Pop artists and Prejudice

There is a lot prejudices against pop artists. I was tweeting something and all of a sudden I saw that because I follow and I admire pop artists, pop singers, people says “oh, this singers are not good because they are so popular”.

So I would like to know your opinion about popularity and quality. This is very important because I hate prejudices and at the same time, I think that people are loosing a lot of love and joy that pop artists can share with us. This is my opinion, off course you can have a different opinion.

Thank you,
Paulo

DON’T WORRY ABOUT YOUR ENGLISH. BUT IF YOU FEEL MORE COMFORTABLE, POST IN YOUR MOTHER TONGUE (PORTUGUES, ESPANOL, FRANçAIS, ETC.).