Paulo Coelho

Stories & Reflections

The middle path

Author: Paulo Coelho

By Paulo Coelho

The monk Lucas, accompanied by a disciple, was walking through a village. An old man asked the monk:

‘Holy man, how do I become closer to God?’

‘Enjoy yourself more, and praise the Creator with your joy,’ came the reply.

The two men were about to walk on when a young man approached them. He asked:

‘What should I do in order to become closer to God?’

‘Spend less time merely enjoying yourself,’ said Lucas.

When the young man left, the disciple remarked:

‘You don’t seem very sure whether we should enjoy ourselves or not.’

‘The spiritual search is a bridge with no handrail built across an abyss,’ replied Lucas. ‘If someone is walking very close to the right side, I say: “To the left!” If they go too close to the left side, I say: “To the right!” It is the extremes that divert us from the Path.’

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