The magic moment

POST EN ESPANOL AQUI: El instante mágico
POS EM PORTUGUES AQUI: O momento mágico

(USA ONLY:”By the River Piedra I sat down and wept” for 0,99 USD Kindle + Nook + iBookstore) Promotion ends Sunday, May 13, 2012

And then he told us:

We have to take risks.
We can only truly understand the miracle of life when we let the unexpected manifest itself.
Every day – together with the sun – God gives us a moment in which it is possible to change everything that makes us unhappy.
Every day we try to pretend that we don’t realize that moment, that it doesn’t exist, that today is just the same as yesterday and will be the same as tomorrow. But if you pay attention, you can discover the magic instant.

It may be hiding at the moment when we put the key in the door in the morning, in the silence right after dinner, in the thousand and one things that all seem the same to us. This moment exists – a moment when all the strength of the stars passes through us and lets us work miracles.

Happiness is at times a blessing – but usually it’s a conquest. The magic instant helps us to change, drives us forward to seek our dreams. We shall suffer and go through quite a few difficult moments and face many a disappointment – but this is all transitory and inevitable, and eventually we shall feel proud of the marks left behind by the obstacles. In the future we will be able to look back with pride and faith.

Poor are those who are afraid of taking risks. Because maybe they are never disappointed, never disillusioned, never suffer like those who have a dream to pursue.
But when they look back – for we always look back – they will hear their heart saying: “What did you do with the miracles that God sowed for your days? What did you do with the talent that your Master entrusted to you? You buried it deep in a grave because you were afraid to lose it. So this is your inheritance: the certainty that you have wasted your life.”

Poor are those who hear these words. For then they will believe in miracles, but the magic instants of life will have already passed.

in “By the River Piedra I sat down and wept” (read Goodreads comments)


  1. fatemeh says:

    wonderful! when enjoy of what we do, a miracil occurs. The miracil of your pen is: it reconciled readers with themselves, God and their dreams. Tank you

  2. K. Pamela Lucario Rodríguez says:

    Siempre hay un momento en la vida en el que podemos cambiar todo lo que no nos hace felices, o esas cosas que nos obstaculizan y no nos permiten alcanzar nuestros objetivos. A veces solo hace falta ese impulso o como dice el autor, ese “instante mágico”.
    Las personas van por la vida desaprovechando todas las bendiciones que se les conceden por miedo a perderlas, por miedo a decepcionarse, a sufrir. Hoy es un buen dí­a para cambiar nuestra manera de ver las cosas, para pensar diferente, para tomar riesgos, para quitarnos ese miedo y esas barreras que nosotros mismos nos ponemos.

  3. Sandra says:

    gosto muito desta parte… e é verdade, todos os dias temos aquele instante… é só manter a alma e o coraí§í£o abertos..

    Adoro! Obrigado Paulo por mais um barco para uma ilha!

  4. Érika Rodrigues says:

    Como tornou-se simples e possí­vel descrever ao mesmo tempo Deus e a vida!

  5. Yan says:

    dear Paulo,

    I forgot if I have posted the translation of this one or not, if yes, just delete this.

    Chinese version:












  6. María Gil Gala says:

    Paulo cada palabra que escribe me llega al corazon, me siento muy identificada con todo lo que escribe y me hace reflexionar sobre mi vida.
    Cuando leo algo suyo es como si yo lo viviera o lo hubiese pensado alguna vez, por ejemplo lo de ser bruja siempre me he sentido una bruja o rezar a mi angel de la guarda, siempre me he sentido muy conectada a la naturaleza y todas mis decisines las he tomado en base a lo que dice mi corazon sin embargo siempre me equivoco en mis decisiones despues de tomar cualquier decision me arrepiento y no entiendo por qué a lo mejor sigo las señales equivocadas no lo se…
    Por otro lado para perseguir un sueño con valentia lo importante es saber realmente lo que se quiere para mi resulta mas dificil saber lo que quiero que conseguirlo.
    Sus libros me han ayudado al menos a plantearme lo que acabo de escribir de otra manera permanecerian esos sentimientos dentro de mi.
    Le doy las gracias

  7. lilah says:

    did you visit the cave behind the water fall by the river piedra???

    1. lilah says:

      i wish i could see something like it

  8. Paulo, Necesito vivir.

  9. niko says:

    From the mood of the article, I realized that a life filled with emotion.However, I still continue to develop the central idea of writing to understand down.

  10. Nelly says:

    Yo solo me pregunto al llegar cada dí­a por qué Dios me ha regalado tantos talentos. Quizás suena como prepotente y mala agradecida, pero esa es la verdad.
    Porque a veces me siento que tengo tanto que no merezco. Ya sé que Dios todo lo hace con un propósito. Así­ que mi vida esta llena de un nuevo conocer cada dí­a. Un nuevo comienzo en busca de encontrar mi aportación al presente que eternamente vivo. Y al final del dí­a me pregunto si ese talento será mi aportación final.

  11. Arto Hutto says:

    “Your road is waiting patiently for you to travel it. It doesn’t rush you or scream out for you as it knows you will find your way to it.”

    “If you rush life, death will come running too.”

  12. Marie-Christine says:

    ‘Toute la relation de l’homme au monde se fait par l’intermediaire des cinq sens, S’enfoncer dans le monde de la magie, c’est decouvrir des sens inconnus’ Brida

    Man’s relationship to the world is done through the five senses. Delving into the magic world is finding unknown ones.

    1. Heimo Kruschinski says:

      No, if you want to see signs you’ll probably need your eyes. Will you interpret them you need heart, mind and character. This is so similar in the Bible. The seven gifts of the holy spirit. More is not necessary for magic. As Saint-Exupery said. “And now here is my secret, a very simple secret; it is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the eye.” It connects spirituality with science.
      And magic is probably something completely natural. Supernatural things do not exist. That’s all Mambo Jambo. There are some things that you do not understand yet. There also no small men live on TV. Love is magic. Magic is love.

      I wish you all a wonderful day

    2. toñi says:

      Pienso lo mismo que Marie-Cristine!
      Se necesitan los cinco sentidos para entrar en conexión con el mundo, la naturaleza o la magia.
      Si cogemos a una persona que ha nacido ciega, sorda y muda por ejemplo…¿qué va a entender esa persona de magia, de amor o de la naturaleza? Si esa persona no puede comunicarse con el mundo exterior, aunque tenga sentimientos y pensamientos ¿cómo va a desarrollar sus pensamientos o sus sentimientos si desconoce por falta de otros “sentidos” el mundo que le rodea?.
      El amor es un sentimiento poderoso, pero necesita también el pensamiento y el resto de sentidos que posee un ser humano para saber diferenciar cada cosa o cada ser que le rodea.
      No podemos cocinar una paella sin todos sus ingredientes. No podemos dejarnos llevar por el amor así­ sin más sin la ayuda de los otros ingredientes: pensamiento, intuición etc.
      Los instantes mágicos o la vida en general que nos rodea debe ser experimentada con todos los sentidos y no sólo el amor.

    3. Marie-Christine says:

      Gracias Toni –
      Es una frase del libro de Paulo ‘Brida’. Perdon no he puesto el nombre. La parte en ingles es lo que he traduciendo.
      Los cinco sentidos es la manera como aprendemos.
      Como la salud es muy importante para mi, aprender a respirar bien (como un nino) es un otro componente importante para conectar con el cuerpo y espiritual ,pensamiento en adicion con la intuicion.
      La salud es muy importante para mi y he aprendido una leccion.

      Puedes mandarme los ingredientes por la paella. por favor ? Me gusta mucho.:)

      Un beso,

    4. Heimo Kruschinski says:

      No, i stand at my opinion. It is right, and i have a very good reciepe for paella. Believe me. :-)

    5. Heimo Kruschinski says:

      I forgot. If the person is blind, deaf and dumb, then this person has still has the divine that everyone carries. That again does not speak against my statement. Intuition, sensitivity, creativity. I know people who are blind. I said before, that they have a better sight than the most. Not? The divine in us is the divine around us, because there is no difference.

    6. Heimo Kruschinski says:

      One more thing. What’s up with mentally handicapped people? This is also a taboo topic in our society. The Nazis regarded such people not worth living. Since all the senses may be present, the brain can not process it. For example, after an accident. Or genetic disease. Such a thing exists. While we are about handicaps, then one can ask. What the matter with their magical world? I do not know. You have a receipe? Just a question.

    7. toñi says:

      Mensaje para Heimo Kruschinski.
      Quiero que sepa que yo he cuidado a personas con discapacidades fí­sicas o mentales y , dejando a un lado el tema de los nazis (porque no me apetece hablar sobre ese tema y ha quedado bien claro para casi todo el mundo lo que hicieron esas personas), las personas con discapacidades fí­sicas o mentales son personas con una capacidad de amor muy grande y con una capacidad de aceptar a los demás tal como son.
      Debemos sentirnos afortunados los que poseemos todos nuestros sentidos de lo que tenemos, y utilizar nuestros cinco sentidos (con magia o sin magia) para sentirnos felices con el mundo que nos rodea. Debemos sentirnos agradecidos con lo que tenemos y debemos alegrarnos de los sueños y las alegrí­as de los demás. No me parece correcto sentir envidia por las alegrí­as de los demás e intentar herirlos o meternos con ellos para hacerles daño para nuestra propia satisfacción. Si alimentamos la rabia y la envidia cada vez seremos personas más mezquinas. Y ya que a usted le gusta tanto la Biblia, lea o recuerde ésto “lo que no deseas para ti mismo, no lo desees para los demás”.
      Tengo una receta de cocina que quizás podrí­a servirle para ser un poco más feliz: busque en su interior cosas positivas, seguro que hay cosas buenas dentro de su corazón, piense en esas cualidades y enfóquese en todas las cosas buenas que hay en su corazón. Empiece por sentirse agradecido por todo lo que Dios le ha dado (su familia, sus amigos,etc) y verá que cada vez encuentra más cosas buenas en usted.
      Estoy segura que aprenderá a ser feliz y descubrirá en usted a alguien maravilloso, piense en ello con tranquilidad y…seguro que verá que el consejo que le doy es bueno. Para esta receta no necesita usted magia, lo único que necesita es a usted mismo y ganas de descubrir en usted mismo todas las cualidades que posee en su interior.
      Un abrazo,

    8. Heimo Kruschinski says:

      Vielen dank für den guten Rat Toni, den ich hiermit gerne zurück gebe. Ich bin sehr glücklich mit meiner Freundin und meinem Kind, falls dich das beruhigt. Ich kann dir nur zustimmen in dem was du sagst. Was die Konzentration auf die schönen Dinge angeht, das empfehle ich auch einigen anderen ständig. Schön das wir einer Meinung sind. Und man lernt nie aus, mein lieber Toni, eine Lektion die ich dir empfehle sowie einigen anderen. Ich übrigens habe nicht begonnen mit den Blinden, Stummen und Tauben. Aber auch das ist nur eine Meinung lieber Toni. Und deine Rezepte nimm selbst, das ist immer das beste. Du kannst mich aber gerne zu einer Paella einladen. Ein gutes Essen mit Freunden ist pure Magie. In diesem Sinne.

      ich wünsche allen einen wundervollen Abend

  13. Susana says:

    Living each moment and feeling lately unsure, with a knot tied deeply in my chest, I know that it is not simply a question of “how will I manage?” but one, rooted in the moment, “am I managing?”. Risk is essentially good, it’s alive and kicking and it doesn’t have to be lived alone, and thus breeds life and inspiration. Thanks for the food for thought, Paulo.. Good night xx

  14. LoveM says:

    Inside you is bliss
    Well of joy & happiness.!.
    Just uncover this

    Quality moment
    Is that instant when you are
    In touch with the truth

    Discover the Truth..
    You are free.. Ever present..
    Heart pleasing Being..

    What a sublime day
    Did you need to do..know or
    Believe anything

    Happiness is not
    A state of mind.. rather its
    A state of no-mind

    It’s sad to say but
    The sole purpose of sadness
    Is to make you sad

    1. theertheswaran.b says:

      wonderful friend
      wonder fullllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll
      please keep coming and bless one & all
      especially Me .
      Grace & Love
      ishwaran, India

  15. marina says:

    True words, if we have pure eyes and open hart we can see the magic moment in everey day, in effect this is our life , the nature , the flowers and everyone that wants to give you a part of him. It’s impontant to look for this every day. Thanks

  16. Adriana says:

    I truly love this passage. It compels to act and I love to be shaken once in a while.

  17. Senthil Selvaraj says:

    Awesome thought Paulo….. really inspired….

  18. rosario mancebo says:

    Awsome truth ! you have this especial sensibility to dicept the deepest ecuations and truth…I find myself digging , cleaning , and rectifying ! thank you for pouring so much wisdom…so much truths! Blessings!

  19. Cynthia Pugh says:

    I am reading the kindle version of this book. I love the way the stories touch on things that we have all felt or experienced. I get a real sense of Daja vu.
    When reading. Love it x

  20. damitza says:

    Gracias, muchisimas gracias por todas las experiencias hermosas que nos permite tener con cada una de sus obras y este fragmento sin duda es hermoso, muchos alguna vez dijimos no a algo que hubieramos querido decir que si, quiza por miedo o quiza otras razones pero es enteramente cierto que si uno se arriesga es alli donde se pueden tener verdaderas experiencias que aun siendo malas en ese momento hacen que tu vida tenga sentido…

  21. flor says:

    I Really thanks God for making u,an instrument for us .may the good Lord bless u always. thank Sir Paulo Coelho for the inspirational wisdom,

  22. cristina cabral says:

    Dear Paulo
    momento mágico! mudaní§a……….. a velocidade varia……..
    quando é muito rápida, aguenta coraí§í£o……

  23. Ricardo Alonso Barrera says:

    Nunca es tarde para hacer las cosas que uno realmente quiere.
    tengo una frase de una sobrina que dice así­: Si yo quiero, yo puedo. – Valentina Abril

  24. Marie-Christine Grimard says:

    How to recognize the magic moment of this day, stopping to run after chimeras, listening to spend time in our lives. Sit and look around us, listening to the air vibrate, or even look in the gaze of the other, and read what is deep in his soul. Then tonight, close your eyes and remembering this day, and retrieve the emotion intact, this time that happened so quickly, but left you an intense vibration in the bottom of the heart.
    Tomorrow will be un other days, and an other magic moment will brighten our time; we have to open our eyes, to admire it, and can enjoy this remember in the silence of our night. M Christine G

  25. Eric says:

    Talk about synchronicity! I just went canyoning down a stream just like the one in the picture today. Canyoning is walking, swimming, sliding down 3-8 meter waterfalls, and sometimes just jumping into pools from those heights or higher. I did it with experienced guides, friends, and protective gear. It’s enormous fun but not, historically, something I normally do. I spend too long shutting myself away and out and this one time I took an invitation. The particular river was absurdly beautiful and like an adventure in fairyland. So even if you’re so old your heart admonishes you like this, take a damn risk anyway because it means you’re still alive for it to do so. Even THAT is a magic moment. Risk even if it means getting out of your deathbed to die on the floor a meter away you haven’t lost anything and might still gain something.

  26. Kathlyn says:

    Hello Paulo,
    I have just dawned on the fact that you genuinly care. Never doubted that your texts were “given” to you, or your sincerity. However the wholeness of your caring is quite moving. How privelaged you must feel to be able to give so much joy. Plus endless words of wisdom to lonely people who seek answers in your wise texts as they haven´t a near friend to turn over their thoughts with.
    I have just returned from a Confirmation. I adore giving your books, not only a gift but an endless support for the life ahead and all the youngsters needing a peaceful moment with some earthly common sense .
    May you have the strength, health and energy to continue. I wish you joy.

  27. Aneela Farooq says:

    Hi Paulo! I am a big fan of ur readings. I have read many of ur books and tries to read ur blogs as much as i can as they r soo inspiring. Today after reading this, i can’t resist myself from commenting on it.

    Islam also says about this magic instant, magic moment. It is said that there is a moment in a day at which ur prayers are accepted (as they r heard whole 24 hours ) so it is the same thing u r describing here but in a different way :)


  28. toñi says:

    Te voy a explicar una idea que tuve: me he dedicado a regalar tus libros. La mejor forma de que los libros lleguen a las personas es regalándolos y cuando me preguntan ¿porqué? les digo que tus libros se están vendiendo por 1 euro y 1 euro no representa nada en comparación con la lectura de uno de tus libros.
    Como se suele decir “el que regala bien vende, si el que lo toma lo entiende”. Es la mejor idea que se me ha ocurrido para que llegues a las personas.
    Además es un poco cruel tener los libros encerrados en estanterí­as, es mejor dejar que vallan pasando de unas manos a otras.
    Un fuerte abrazo.

  29. Olta Canka says:

    I love the illustration of this text. I feel like I am in that place and my soul expands just to travel everywhere allover that place and beyond. Magic. :)

    I’ve started practice for my studies in a publishing house and every day when I get in there, I see a beautiful picture of your radiant, smiling face, hanging on the wall, and it makes my day. My source of inspiration, that is my magic moment and it lasts the entire day. :)


  30. Kealan says:

    The longer I think about ‘writing’ as an art, the more it confuses me, until now – I really realize that… A book/story must be written during that magic moment. The words flow in a way that can not flow without that magic moment of synchronicity. Written at another time or moment, without the touch of the higher power, would not result in something that is shown in the above passage.

  31. Rico says:

    So if one wakes later in life will there be no magic instants of life or would there be fewer and could they be more pure.

    1. smita says:

      there’s no moment better than the one handed to you for waking up, i believe. we were not meant to wake up, until our spirit is truly ready to accept the change or ‘see’ the magic. What say, Mr. Coelho? Sir, my regards.

  32. Aaron Pacis says:

    Everytime I read your books, It’s always applicable to my situation. Maybe God has presented me the signs I need or maybe He already had but I’m too much of a fool to see it. May I find my own personal legend just like Santiago.May I find the Pilar of my life. And just like you in Aleph, may i find the reason why i can’t progress no more.

    From the biggest fan of Paulo Coelho in the Philippines, Aaron Pacis

  33. yadi jaimes says:

    Gracias tus palabras reconfortan mi alma y de q manera,pondre en practica la busqueda de ese momento magico en verdad lo necesito.

  34. By the River Piedra I sat down and wept was the first Book of yours that I read. That’s a very powerful Book. You are a genius Master!!!!!

  35. Well says:

    Take care. Every moment is precious, and it´s not a thing. Looking for one miracle a day might limit the experience of the many wonders of this day. What is it you plan to do with this one wild and precious day?

  36. deborah says:

    i find it hard to reason you would have time to read these comments….but if you do. thank you. As a fellow journeyman on this path of life. You have released through your novels a light in the darkness. Where my mind can say, “but if?” and “but if not?” and through your tales find release for the whispers of my heart.

  37. katie says:

    I must say … visiting your blog for some time, I can see how much I have tested your concepts, modified, but definitely many included. I love to pull out the positive parts and let them support me in getting stronger.

    your comment above is a hint for staying in and appreciating the moment, to keep the heart and mind for dreams open, to follow the dreams, and to check how much we swim on the wave of denial.
    I agree with you that it must be a shock to become aware of neglecting one’s dreams on the death bed. I must say that this idea has kept me “running” to work on me and my goals.

  38. joelle says:

    “Poor are those who hear these words. For then they will believe in miracles, but the magic instants of life will have already passed.” I needed this sentence to continue my path. I am a bit lonely and reading this passage restores vigor to the heart.All your books give meaning to our lives and nothing seems impossible. Thanks you Paulo .

  39. Janet says:

    Its not often words can touch my heart so deeply a tear of truth falls from my eye.

  40. gregoa says:

    Each day it is like holding the line – on the other side the main source aspect a answer to the dialing tone.
    Still in a mode were one is divided into should I stay or should I go.
    This world is different to all others.
    It is the last. It was the first.
    Times will change rougher now. How depends on the *people*.
    The first english *word* my Mom taught me. Once, in India, 1975.

  41. Heimo Kruschinski says:

    This is a wonderful excerpt. No risk no fun. And fun means Profit, but money is no profit. Money is a tool and you can not eat or drink it. Disappointment. You may be disappointed by humans. Not from the world. And one can only be disappointed if you allow it. Gandhi has formulated very similar. It has something to do with expectations. I always expect the worst, and let me surprise positivley. Which happens rarely if you know the people. Each day of life is magical. But there are certain moments that are magical than others. dayI have not read the book yet. Certainly I will do that. Thank you.

    I wish you all a wonderful

  42. Ciao Bella says:

    ” I threw myself down somehow under a certain figtree and let my tears flow freely. Rivers streamed from my eyes, a sacrifice acceptable to you and (though not in these words, yet in this sense) I repeatedly said to you: `How long, O Lord? How long, Lord, will you be angry to the uttermost? Do not be mindful of our old iniquities`. For I felt my past to have a grip on me. It uttered wretched cries: `How long, how long is it to be?`
    `Tomorrow, tomorrow.` `Why not not? Why not an end to my impure life in this very hour?`

    As I was saying this and weeping in the bitter agony of my heart, suddenly I heard a voice from the nearby house chanting as if it might be a boy or a girl ( I do not know which), saying and repeating over and over again `Pick up and read, pick up and read.` At once my countenance changed, and I began to think intently whether there might be some sort of children´s game in which such a chant is used. But I could not remember having heard of one. I checked the flood of tears and stood up. I interpreted it solely as a divine command to me to open the book and read the first chapter I might find. For I had heard how Antony happened to be present at the gospel reading, and took it as an admonition addressed to himself when the words were read: `Go, sell all you have, give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come follow me`. By such an inspired utterance he was immediately `converted to you`. So I hurried back to the place where Alypius was sitting. There I had put down the book of the apostle when I got up. I seized it, opened it and in silence read the first passage on which my eyes lit: `Not in riots and drunken parties, not in eroticism and indencencies, not in strife and rivalry, but put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh in its lusts`.

    I neither wished nor needed to read further. At once, with the last words of this sentence, it was as if a light of relief from all anxiety flooded into my heart. All the shadows of doubt were dispelled.”
    The Confessions of Saint Augustine ( the volume Augustine read was Paul´s Epistle to the Romans)

    Listen to James as well, he sounds like a saint even if he is not;))

    Pusa and Love, to everyone…..

  43. mercirani says:

    Your words really touches in one way or the other and it enables me to connect with eternity. Somebody in the universe is helping us in realising our dreams. I started believing in this after reading your book ALCHEMIST & LIKE THE FLOWING RIVER

    1. mercirani says:

      Dear Paulo
      Your books are helping me to connect with eternity in a blissful manner. Thank you Paulo! keep writing

  44. Amanda Frost says:

    true magic!

  45. cool message. Thanks Paulo

  46. Larissa Corrêa says:

    Amazing. I think we need to pay attencion in this things to don’t only to “pass” for the life.

  47. Аlina says:

    By the River Piedra I sat down and wept – one of my favorite books! Now I read Aleph! I understand that we are the masters of our destiny and our happiness is in our hands! Moving forward will make us happier! Best Greetings from Russia) Trans-Siberian Railway is waiting you, dear Paulo)))))) :*