By The River Piedra I Sat Down And Wept

By The River Piedra I Sat Down And Wept

What is it about Love stories and Candy-floss romances that makes people blush with fondness and weep as though the hearts that had been ripped apart in course of the events were their very own? The answer to this is ‘Vague Self-identification’. An irrepressible empathy that fills one’s mind ( reacting to the story as though it were one’s own ) leads us to fantasize how we ourselves would react in a similar situation and for some brief moments , as though by some magical formula , puts us in the delicate-dainty shoes of these too-good-to-be-true or too-true-to-be-good characters and their fairy-tale romances.
I felt myself swept away by the sheer similarities between the character of Pilar in Paulo Coelho’s ‘By the River Piedra I Sat Down And Wept’
and me. So much so that I could feel her pain , laugh her laughter and experience the love and longing throbbing silently in Pilar’s heart within me.
Delicately written, Coelho has unveiled yet another facet of love in his new work, which we all know of, yet do not possess the skills to express or elucidate. Love as a need, as a will to live.
While Pilar’s love towards her childhood sweetheart is fraught with self-doubts and pessimism, her need for this love is innocent and almost childlike. A need that keeps pulling her back and again, fighting tooth-and-nail with the demons of self-assured failure and perennial hopelessness. It is this need that gives her the courage to fight all her fears and breathe life into her once-frustrated emotions.
Love, for some, is the reason for life.
Pilar’s ‘Miracle-Man’ (very aptly kept nameless in the story) is a picture of strength, perfection and God’s glory. Chosen as a divine instrument to dispel sickness and spread the word of The Divine feminine; His path is more torturous than Pilar’s. So even as Pilar is engaged in a continuous self-battle , He wages a battle between far stronger forces than these. The Battle between Man’s Will and the Divine Will.
The Infinite compassion of the divine will is further revealed when it finally subdues its intense force to merge and become one with the Individual Will ; for the happiness of the Many and the Happiness of the one are intricately linked even as a drop of water in the clouds is inextricably linked to the drop of water in the ocean.  
By The River Piedra I Sat Down And Wept Originally published in Shvoong:

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