Eat Pray Love – Elizabeth Gilbert

Written by on July 27, 2010 in Book Club

So I was watching Oprah last year and I saw this pale lady speaking to Oprah about how her life changed by finding herself to finding peace and  true love. She was full of energy and full of life. I wanted a piece of that. What got me was that she said she learnt to be still. I wanted to learn how to still my busy mind. She went to Italy where she ate and ate and ate. Then she went to India and found inner peace. Thereafter she went to Indonesia and she found true love.

Since I am one that enjoys travelling and enjoys reading books that can make me a better Nanima, I decided why not. The whole world seems to have gone gaga over this book. So I bought it.

I enjoyed one very life changing passage in the book. Don’t want to tell you about it because it was a profound moment and don’t want to spoil the book for you.  I enjoyed Italy because we travelled to Italy soon after the book. The pizzas in Italy are divine. The crust is crispy. The only place in South Africa that has pizza crust similar to Italy is La Padrino in Lenasia.  I enjoyed the eating part. I enjoyed the concept that she said she needed to eat to get strong again. She needed to get physically strong before she got spiritually strong. Maybe I must reread the India part now that I came from India. (Click here for Nanima’s India trip). I didn’t go to any temples in India though. Did she  learn to still her mind eventually. A struggle we all face and need to learn to master.  Indonesia I haven’t been.. one for the the to do list. Can’t really relate to it. I liked some of the advise the medicine man gave her. Not very into the palm reading although had a weird experience with a palm reader on a bus in Mauritius.. eish.

I enjoyed Italy and I enjoyed India to an extent but I found that Indonesia seemed like she was rushing to finish writing the book and didn’t have as much oomph as the first chapters in the book or maybe I was rushing through the end of the book.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9B9zFo4RFw

Being a muslim I found somethings not aligned to my spiritual beliefs. Especially when books similar to these talk about the God inside you. I felt a little uncomfortable about it. What does that mean? I know that Islam teaches us that there is One God. He has no partners, no sons, no parents. What I thought was useful I used, what i thought was out of my circle I left it. I feel that sometimes you have to be very careful when you are reading books that it doesn’t cross the line of you beliefs. It can be very hard to see the line sometimes.Hinduism, Buddhaism and Islam have totally different beliefs while Judaism and Christianity still have some links to each other. Sometimes if you not clear about your own religion you can easily be subtly indoctrinated into a totally opposite belief system. I was glad to get a better understanding about other religions from this book that I wasn’t aware off.

(Click here for an Islamic Self help alternative)

We all have been in the same position as Elizabeth Gilbert sometime or the other. Some have had failed relationships. Others have been unhappy at their jobs. We all have on our own journey’s of self discovery. For her it might been eating in Italy, praying in India and loving in Indonesia.  For others it could have been a different path like fasting in Jozi, screaming in Cape Town and forgiving in Durbs. You don’t have to follow her path. Make your own path.

Her way was one way of getting out of the rut. Everyone has their own unique way of getting out. If you read the book learn lessons from her way but don’t be a copy cat, please try and find your own unique way home.

Looks like Julia Roberts is playing the lead in the movie.. what did you think about the movie vs the book?

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8csr68LjUM

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  1. Fatima says:

    Thanks for reviewing this book.
    I was interested in buying it, but wasn’t very sure if should, because of the concerns of the “spiritual” part of it.

  2. Nasreen says:

    About the Praying part– there were some things that was totally against my beliefs and I chose to ignore however there were some things that u take it and apply it and also similar to our beliefs…
    abt the god in you — I think with that one – we need to look at our inner self and our nafs….ultimately we need to be a representive of “Allah” and maybe this is what we muslims shud take from “finding ure god”..
    ??!?!

  3. zahida says:

    Slms.I totally lovd da book.I think as a woman u r able to relate to lots dat was happenin to Liz.Whereas a man will neva b abl to figure wats all da rave reviews for.u definately got to take out of it wat works for u n ignore wat maybe against ur beliefs.n as Sadatullah Khan simply n beautifully explains(for those who hv attended his wkshop) we r representatives of Allah n surely we mus try n adapt those sterling qualitys n if we c it in dat light,then dats wat ‘God in u’ shud mean to us wen we hear dat in da book n movie…May Allah always guide us n strengthen our faith dat wen we read all kinds of books,we see da Islam in all of dem.n really it is….wslm

  4. Nazaahah says:

    This review was amazing! Masha’Allah!

    Eat, Pray, Love was such an inspirational and spitually uplifting memoir. I’ve read this book 2.5 times and saw the movie once. This continues to be one of my favorite books and I’ll often come back to it just to reread certain excerpts.

    I was a little skeptical at first because I thought it would conflict with my Islamic beliefs, but that was only on some of the book. What I thought to be conflicting I simply put an Islamic spin on it in my head.

    Whenever I’m meditating, I always think back to Liz and it makes me focus even more.

    I haven’t been to any of the “I” countries yet but Insha’Allah I’ll make it to all three 🙂

  5. shakira says:

    slmsss!! i watched the movie at a time in my life when i was really down in the dumps. it made me realise that my inner happiness can only come from me and what i love best…Many women tend to sacrifice their sense of selves when we get married and we live our lives through our husbands and children. This movie shows you that you have to know who you are before you can know others,and love who you are before yoou love others…

  6. dillilah says:

    The movie was simply enjoyable aswell but definitely not as fascinating as the book!!!

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