Archives for October 2015

A Halloween story

[ Excerpted from Spooky Texas retold by S.E. Schlosser]

Oh, you hear the stories about how dangerous Ouija boards are, but hey—it’s just a game. Mary waited until midnight to begin our little game, and the four of us—Sarah, Jessie, me, and, Mary, started by asking all kinds of silly questions.

It was a strange-looking board, covered with letters and symbols. There was a plastic pointer that was supposed to move across the board at the behest of the spirits. The instructions called it a planchette.

Around one thirty in the morning, the planchette suddenly froze in Mary’s hand. It wouldn’t move, no matter how much we pushed and pulled.

Mary turned her frightened blue eyes toward me. “I’m not doing it,” she said, lifting her hands. I grabbed the planchette myself and tried to push it around, but it was fixed to the board.

Suddenly, a kind of electric shock buzzed through my fingers. I gasped and tried to pull my fingers from the planchette, but they were stuck. Mary and Jessie both tried to pull my fingers away, nothing helped. The other girls stared with wide, round eyes, as the planchette came alive under my fingers—which were still fixed to its surface—and began to move.

“Help.” The words spelled out under my hand. “Help me. Help me.”

The planchette kept moving back and forth between the h – e – l – p continuously, until Sarah cried out: “Who are you?”

“Amber.” The board spelled. “My name is Amber. I am eight years old.”

“What’s wrong?” Mary asked. Her face was so white all the freckles stood out like darkened age spots.

“Water. Danger. Help. Scared.” The words spelled out as fast as my hand could move.

“Call 9-1-1,” Mary cried suddenly. “Quick. Amber is in danger.”

By this time, Sarah was gasping into the phone. Then she hung up the phone. “They wouldn’t listen to me,” she told us, almost in tears.

At that instant, my hand was suddenly free from the planchette.

“She’s gone,” I gasped,

“See if you can contact her again,” Mary said urgently. “We need to know if she’s okay!”

I picked up the plastic planchette again. “Amber, are you there?” I asked softly, afraid of what might happen.

After a long pause, it moved slowly across the board and spelled out the words: “Too late.” And after another long pause. “Water. Flood. Drowned. Mobile. Alabama.” The planchette stopped.
I knew that Amber was gone.

None of us got much sleep that night. In the morning, we rushed through breakfast and then looked up the Alabama news on the Internet. None of us were surprised to read that there had been flash floods the night before. I read the names of those who had died in the flood. One of the victims was an eight-year-old girl named Amber.

The secret of happiness (ENG, ESPA, PORT)

The story below is taken from my book “The Alchemist” is one  of the Top 20 Bestselling Books from all times

EN ESPANOL CLICAR AQUI: Las dos gotas de aceite
EM PORTUGUES, CLICAR AQUI: As duas gotas de óleo

A merchant sent his son to learn the Secret of Happiness from the wisest of men. The young man wandered through the desert for forty days until he reached a beautiful castle at the top of a mountain. There lived the sage that the young man was looking for.

However, instead of finding a holy man, our hero entered a room and saw a great deal of activity; merchants coming and going, people chatting in the corners, a small orchestra playing sweet melodies, and there was a table laden with the most delectable dishes of that part of the world.

The wise man talked to everybody, and the young man had to wait for two hours until it was time for his audience.

With considerable patience, the Sage listened attentively to the reason for the boy’s visit, but told him that at that moment he did not have the time to explain to him the Secret of Happiness.

He suggested that the young man take a stroll around his palace and come back in two hours’ time.

“However, I want to ask you a favor,” he added, handling the boy a teaspoon, in which he poured two drops of oil. “While you walk, carry this spoon and don’t let the oil spill.”

The young man began to climb up and down the palace staircases, always keeping his eyes fixed on the spoon. At the end of two hours he returned to the presence of the wise man.

“So,” asked the sage, “did you see the Persian tapestries hanging in my dining room? Did you see the garden that the Master of Gardeners took ten years to create? Did you notice the beautiful parchments in my library?”

Embarrassed, the young man confessed that he had seen nothing. His only concern was not to spill the drops of oil that the wise man had entrusted to him.

“So, go back and see the wonders of my world,” said the wise man. “You can’t trust a man if you don’t know his house.”

Now more at ease, the young man took the spoon and strolled again through the palace, this time paying attention to all the works of art that hung from the ceiling and walls. He saw the gardens, the mountains all around the palace, the delicacy of the flowers, the taste with which each work of art was placed in its niche. Returning to the sage, he reported in detail all that he had seen.

“But where are the two drops of oil that I entrusted to you?” asked the sage.

Looking down at the spoon, the young man realized that he had spilled the oil.

“Well, that is the only advice I have to give you,” said the sage of sages. “The Secret of Happiness lies in looking at all the wonders of the world and never forgetting the two drops of oil in the spoon.”

from the book  “The Alchemist”

The road not taken / El camino menos transitado

Poem by Robert Frost (1874-1963).

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I””
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.


El camino menos transitado

Dos caminos se bifurcaban en un bosque amarillo,
Y apenado por no poder tomar los dos
Siendo un viajero solo, largo tiempo estuve de pie
Mirando uno de ellos tan lejos como pude,
Hasta donde se perdí­a en la espesura;

Entonces tomé el otro, imparcialmente,
Y habiendo tenido quizás la elección acertada,
Pues era tupido y requerí­a uso;
Aunque en cuanto a lo que vi allí­
Hubiera elegido cualquiera de los dos.

Y ambos esa mañana yací­an igualmente,
¡Oh, habí­a guardado aquel primero para otro dí­a!
Aun sabiendo el modo en que las cosas siguen adelante,
Dudé si debí­a haber regresado sobre mis pasos.

Debo estar diciendo esto con un suspiro
De aquí­ a la eternidad:
Dos caminos se bifurcaban en un bosque y yo,
Yo tomé el menos transitado,
Y eso hizo toda la diferencia.

(traduí§í£o: ní£o encontrei o tradutor do texto na internet)


O caminho menos percorrido

Num bosque amarelo dois caminhos se separam,
E lamentando ní£o poder seguir os dois
E sendo apenas um viajante, fiquei muito tempo parado
E olhei para um deles tí£o distante quanto pude
Até onde se perdia na mata;

Entí£o segui o outro, tí£o bom como o do lado
Porque coberto de mato e querendo uso
Embora os que por lá passaram
Os tenham realmente percorrido de igual forma,

Ambos estavam essa manhí£
Com folhas que passo nenhum pisou.
Oh, guardei o primeiro para outro dia!
Embora sabendo como um caminho leva para longe,
Duvidasse que algum dia voltasse novamente.

Direi isso suspirando
Em algum lugar, daqui muito e muito tempo
Dois caminhos se separam em um bosque, e eu …
Eu escolhi o menos percorrido
E isso fez toda diferení§a.

(traduí§í£o: ní£o encontrei o tradutor do texto na internet)

5 reasons why Paulo Coelho is so Successful

He is Rebellious 

Paulo Coelho was not one of those kids who took normal traditional way without questioning or opposing it. He always stood against the traditional ways. He always had his own perception of the world which was beyond the understanding of normal people.

When asked by his parents to go for engineering, he said he wanted to be a writer. Though he was forced to join the college but later dropped out to follow his dream.

Paulo Coelho disagreed to a lot of views of his parents and society. He had his own reality which he ultimately made true.

paulo coelho quotes

He was considered Crazy and Freak

Because of his rebellious attitude, Paulo Coelho was considered crazy and freak. Disagreeing to normal concepts made his parents believe that he was mentally ill and put him in a mental institution. He even tried escape from there three times before being released.

Ultimately all theses made his parents believe that we can’t make him right so leave him on his own fate. They even said that “ oh my poor son you can never make a living because of this weird crazy attitude.

Travelling around the World

After dropping out of college, Paulo Coelho set out to travel the world in search of happiness and truth. He adopted a kind of hippie lifestyle. Moving from place to place with no money.

Meeting new people, learning new things. A journey of adventure and spiritual to the self.

In 1986, Coelho walked the 500 plus mile road of Santiago de Compostela in northwestern Spain, a turning point in his life. On the path, Paulo Coelho had a spiritual awakening which he described autobiographically in his book “Pilgrimage”.

He took Risk

Risk makes us see things which you can’t see being in your comfort zone. Risk put us in circumstances which brings out the best version of us.

Paulo Coelho never thought twice in taking the risk. In fact for him risk was a way of life. Right from dropping out of college to travelling the world with no money speaks of his courageous and risk-taking attitude.

He even left successful lyrics writing career to focus full-time on Writing.

paulo coelho quote


He is a Believer

The very basic thing we should have in our life is Faith and Belief on ourselves, in our destiny. To believe is one of the most crucial things in life. Belief gives us the positive feeling and motivates us to keep going.

Paulo Coelho was a great believer. He always believed in his destiny. He believed in omens. he believed that When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.


30 SEC READ: Tell a story (ENG, ESPA, PORT)

Illustration by Ken Crane
CLICK AQUI PARA LEER EN ESPANOL: Por que contar histórias

The great Rabbi Israel Shem Tov, when he saw that the people in his village were being mistreated, went into the forest, lit a holy fire, and said a special prayer, asking God to protect his people.
And God sent him a miracle.

Later, his disciple Maggid de Mezritch, following in his master’s footsteps, would go to the same part of the forest and say:
“Master of the Universe, I do not know how to light the holy fire, but I do know the special prayer; hear me, please!”
The miracle always came about.

A generation passed, and Rabbi Moshe-leib of Sasov, when he saw the war approaching, went to the forest, saying:
“I don’t know how to light the holy fire, nor do I know the special prayer, but I still remember the place. Help us, Lord!”
And the Lord helped.

Fifty years later, Rabbi Israel de Rizhin, in his wheelchair, spoke to God:
“I don’t know how to light the holy fire, nor the prayer, and I can’t even find the place in the forest. All I can do is tell this story, and hope God hears me.”
And telling the story was enough for the danger to pass.

And I will add:
Tell your stories. Your neighbors may not understand you, but they will understand your soul. Stories are the last bridge left to allow different cultures to communicate among each other.

Tales of Zen wisdom – The gift of insults

By Paulo Coelho

Near Tokyo lived a great Samurai warrior, now old, who decided to teach Zen Buddhism to young people. In spite of his age, the legend was that he could defeat any adversary.

One afternoon, a warrior – known for his complete lack of scruples – arrived there. He was famous for using techniques of provocation: he waited until his adversary made the first move and, being gifted with an enviable intelligence in order to repair any mistakes made, he counterattacked with fulminating speed.

The young and impatient warrior had never lost a fight. Hearing of the Samurai’s reputation, he had come to defeat him, and increase his fame.

All the students were against the idea, but the old man accepted the challenge.

All gathered on the town square, and the young man started insulting the old master. He threw a few rocks in his direction, spat in his face, shouted every insult under the sun – he even insulted his ancestors. For hours, he did everything to provoke him, but the old man remained impassive. At the end of the afternoon, by now feeling exhausted and humiliated, the impetuous warrior left.

Disappointed by the fact that the master had received so many insults and provocations, the students asked:

– How could you bear such indignity? Why didn’t you use your sword, even knowing you might lose the fight, instead of displaying your cowardice in front of us all?

– If someone comes to you with a gift, and you do not accept it, who does the gift belong to? – asked the Samurai.

– He who tried to deliver it – replied one of his disciples.

– The same goes for envy, anger and insults – said the master. – When they are not accepted, they continue to belong to the one who carried them.

Welcome to Share with Friends – Free Texts for a Free Internet

Gibran’s love letters

Born in Lebanon, Khalil Gibran (1883-1931) will be always remembered for his classic The Prophet, which is still on the bestsellers list in several countries, 60 years after its publication.

In 1995, a Lebanese friend of mine gave me a book containing love letters exchanged between Gibran and Mary Haskell, a 10-year older American woman.

When I read it, I discovered a complex and fascinating man, what encouraged me to select a few texts for publication

Here are a few excerpts:

MARCH 10, 1912
Mary, my adored Mary, how can you think you bring me more sorrow than joy? No one knows for sure where the boundary between pain and pleasure lies: many times, I think it is impossible to separate them. You give me so much joy it almost hurts and you cause me so much pain; it even makes me smile.

MAY 24, 1914
Imagine, adorable, if we were walking through a beautiful field, in a beautiful day and suddenly a storm fell over our heads. How wonderful! Is there greater emotion than seeing the elements producing wild power and energy? Let’s go to the fields, Mary, and seek the unexpected.

JULY 8, 1914
I always thought that when people understand us, they end up enslaving us — given that we accept anything in exchange of feeling understood. However, your comprehension brought me the most profound peace and freedom I have ever experienced. In the two hours of your visit, you found a black spot in my heart; you touched it and it went away forever, allowing me to see my own light.

APRIL 18, 1915

Thetwo days in which we were together were magnificent. When we talk about the past, we always turn present and future more real. For many years, I dreaded to look at what I had lived and suffered in silence. Today I understood that silence makes us suffer more profoundly. Karanvir Singh a.k.a. Kerano A few excerpts from Khalil Gibran’s letters to an older love interest ILLUSTRATION: ALAKA CHAKRABORTY But you made me talk and I discovered dusty things hidden in my soul. Now I can tear them up from there.

JULY 17, 1915

Both of us are trying to touch the limits of our existence. The great poets of the past always surrendered to life. They didn’t look for established things, or tried to unravel secrets: they simply allowed their souls to be carried away by their emotions. People are always seeking safety and sometimes they find it: but safety is an end in itself, and life doesn’t have an end. Your letter, Mary, is the most beautiful expression of life that I have ever received. Poets aren’t those who write poetry but all those who have a heart filled with the sacred spirit of love.

MAY 10, 1916

Dear Mary: I’m sending you a parable I have finished. I haven’t been writing much and only in Arab. But I would like to hear your corrections and suggestions about this excerpt: At the shadow of a temple, my friend pointed me to a blind man.
My friend said: “This man is a wise man.”
We approached him and I asked: “Since when are you blind?”
“Ever since I was born.”
“I am an astronomer,” I said.
“So am I,” the blind man answered. And placing his hand on my chest, he said: “I spend my life observing the many suns and stars that move inside me.”

You Know Who You Are

by Benjamin Hardy

With so many people floating through life, a person with a strong sense of identity will emerge from the crowd. This is not a forced act, but a natural and organic evolution.

According to psychological identity theory, there are four stages of identity development.

At stage one, you have no identity. You blindly accept whatever ideology or values system was taught by your parents or family members.

At stage two, you begin expanding your social circle, but you passively go with the flow of society without questioning. You lack authenticity and obsess over fitting in and pleasing others. Like stage one: no true identity.

At stage three, you begin to experience an identity crisis. You realize you’ve been faking, copying, and blindly following your entire life. You begin to question your choices and values. This leads you to explore new lifestyles, belief systems, choices, friends, and cultures.

However, at this stage there is little commitment and depth. Instead, it is endless searching for the next thing. Most people are stuck in a perpetual identity crisis. They have no clue who they really are.

At stage four
, you have courageously voyaged through your identity crisis and autonomously committed to a particular identity (i.e., ideology, occupation, relational values, etc.). You continue to explore. However, this exploration is grounded on foundational beliefs and a clear sense of who you are and what your direction is in life.

Every person must pass through the identity development process. Few reach the capstone. Most never obtain their own id

20 SEC READING: The Beloved Man (ENG, ESPA)

A Siberian shaman asked God to show him a man that He loved. The Lord advised him to look for a certain farmer.

“What do you do to make the Lord love you so much?” the shaman asked the farmer when he found him.
“I say His name in the morning. I work all day and say His name before going to sleep. That’s all,” the farmer replied.
I think I found the wrong man, thought the shaman.

Just then the Lord appeared and said, “Fill a bowl with milk, go to town and then return. Without spilling a single drop.”

The shaman did so. On his return, the Lord wanted to know how many times he had thought of Him.
“How could I? I was worried not to spill the milk!”

“A simple bowl made you forget Me,” said the Lord, “and the farmer, with all his tasks, thinks of me twice a day.”


El hombre amado

Un chamán siberiano pidió a Dios que le mostrase un hombre amado por Él. El Señor le aconsejó que buscara a cierto labrador.
-¿Qué haces para que el Señor te ame tanto? -preguntó el chamán al labrador cuando lo hubo encontrado.
-Digo Su nombre por la mañana. Trabajo todo el dí­a entero, y digo Su nombre antes de dormir. Nada más que eso.
“Creo que me he equivocado de hombre,” pensó el chamán.

Y en ese momento apareció el Señor, diciendo: “Llena un cuenco de leche, ve a la ciudad y vuelve, sin derramar una sola gota.”

El chamán obedeció. A la vuelta, el Señor quiso saber cuántas veces habí­a pensado en Él.
-¿Cómo podí­a hacer eso? ¡Estaba preocupado por no derramar la leche!

-Un simple cuenco ha hecho que me olvides -dijo el Señor-. Y el labrador, que nunca deja de trabajar, piensa en mí­ dos veces al dí­a.

Rumi’s wisdom

If in thirst you drink water from a cup, you see God in it. Those who are not in love with God will see only their own faces in it

All day I think about it, then at night I say it. Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing? I have no idea. My soul is from elsewhere, I’m sure of that, and I intend to end up there.

Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.

Silence is an ocean. Speech is a river. Silence is the language of God, all else is poor translation.

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I will meet you there.

The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you; Don’t go back to sleep. You must ask for what you really want; Don’t go back to sleep. People are going back and forth across the doorsill where the two worlds touch. The door is round and open. Don’t go back to sleep.

“When I am with you, we stay up all night.
When you’re not here, I can’t go to sleep.
Praise God for those two insomnias!
And the difference between them.”

Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.

Jalāl ad-DÄ«n Muḥammad Balkh, or Rumi (30 September 1207 – 17 December 1273), was a 13th-century Persian muslim poet, jurist, theologian, and Sufi mystic.