Author: Paulo Coelho
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Paulo Coelho, the famous name in the sky of literary charisma, is a Brazilian lyricist and novelist. His famous books, The Alchemist, Adultery, and Eleven Minutes gained a wild accolade across the world. Brida is his third brainchild that explores the spiritual quest of a young Irish girl in search of power that lies hidden in the mysteries of the world.
In a Nutshell:
The story is set at the backdrop of sunbathed Ireland and inaugurates with Brida’s wish to learn magic:
“I want to learn about magic.”
Her life was dedicated to her mission. And she appeared desperate and determined to achieve it.
“I see no contradiction between my search and my personal happiness.”
And in her way to the world of magic, she found Magus, the great power-crafter and her soul-mate. He taught her the mantra of magic.
“Magic is a bridge,” he said at last, “a bridge that allows you to walk from the visible world over into the invisible world, and to learn the lessons of both those worlds.”
“And how can I learn to cross that bridge?”
“By discovering your own way of crossing it. Everyone has their own way.”
Magus helped her to conquer fear and taught her the tradition of the sun. In Brida Magus found his soul-mate but he let her free out of his charm. Later Brida met Wicca and learnt the rituals of witchcraft and the tradition of the moon.
At the end of the witch ceremony, Magus and Brida confessed their love for each other.
“But you don’t love me,” said the Magus.
“I do love you. I don’t yet know my love for you, but I do love you. You’re my Soul Mate.”
But Magus instructed her to follow her lover Loren.
“I will always remember now that love is liberty.”
And she promised, “I will always remember you, and you will remember me, just as we will remember the evening, the rain on the windows, and all the things we’ll always have because we cannot possess them.”
I feel this is the most beautiful part of the novel…the celebration of love…free yet profound.
“People give flowers as presents because flowers contain the true meaning of Love. Anyone who tries to possess a flower will have to watch its beauty fading. But if you simply look at a flower in a field, you will keep it forever, because the flower is part of the evening and the sunset and the smell of damp earth and the clouds on the horizon.”
Brida was looking at the flower. Then Magus took it from her and returned it to the forest.
“That is what the forest taught me. That you will never be mine and that is why I will never lose you. You were my hope during my days of loneliness, my anxiety during moments of doubt, my certainty during moments of faith.”
Brida’s eyes filled with tears. She was proud of her Soul Mate but she had to keep her commitment to Lorens. Brida was practical enough to control her emotions and follow her life.
When Lorens called Brida again and again Magus gave her leave,
“Go in peace,” said the Magus. “And dry those tears, or tell him that the smoke from the fire got in your eyes. Never forget me.”
This line moistened my eyes.
The style is succinct, brief yet enough to squeeze the passion out of the situations and characters. The language like a spiral of poetry draws music out of one’s heart. In Coelho’s hand, poetry and prose crisscross at every point allowing the perfect charm to build the magic world for Brida, Magus, Wicca and even for Brida’s mother and Loren. It feels as if some occult power works within his words. Every thread of themes is so interlinked and compressed that a natural evolution of thought takes a perfect shape and texture of the plot.
The storyline is invigorated with so many life quotes that transcend this novel to the ascendency of great literary value and culture.
None of us knows what wait for us…every coming minute is uncertain. But what keeps us going is our faith. “Being human means having doubts and yet still continuing on your path.”
The novel reveals another horizon of love, i.e. ‘Freedom’. That’s why Magus let Brida go with Lorens. Love is an ocean. Love cannot be confined or fettered. It is a feeling as diversified as the cosmos. Wicca’s love for Magus, Brida’s love for Magus, Brida’s mother’s love for that unknown man in the temple….all get mingled in one point – Love doesn’t grow old with the body. Feelings of importance in someone’s eyes keep it aflame. Love, desire in other’s eyes for one makes him/her younger as for Magus, as for Brida’s mother.
The Women Characters:
Introspecting the narrative, we can sketch Brida as a modern girl of Renaissance who keeps the stamina to muster all the courage to confront the adversities of the world in search of her vocation. Brida whiffed off her fear…conquered the black night… “The night is just a part of the day”. She must trust it. And that trust was called faith…. “Miracles couldn’t be explained either, but they existed for those who believed in them.”
Brida is herself the power…the emblem of strength and intelligence.
“I have to be my own teacher…”
Brida is the bridge between unrestrained power and control…the world of magic and the human world the world of love and commitment.
Apart from Brida one of the characters that fascinate me is Wicca, Brida’s wise patron in witchcraft. Wicca had a deep respect and love for Magus. But Wicca is intelligent and wise and in her character, she possesses an aureole of self-restraint and dignity.
Like every mother, she is the shed of solace and shroud of affection for Brida’s every confusion and problem. She shared a life story of her when she met a man in a temple who was in search of history. They talked over the issues and in his eyes she found the love, the desire “I could see in her eyes that he desired me… I felt young again.”
“Finding one important thing in your life does not mean you have to give up all the other important things.”
At first, I don’t like the novel so much as I don’t like supernatural elements in fiction. But as I go through the pages and reach the heart of it I realize Brida’s search for magic is just a symbol of our search for life. It is not just a story of magic but more than that. I wish to live in the character of Brida, in her lingering curiosity and desperate desire to attain her reincarnation. Brida’s undaunted spirit, impeachable probity yet an inherent innocence fascinate me. I wish every reader must relish the taste of that occult power through Brida.
Hi, I’m Munmun here and welcome to my book blog. I’m an English Teacher. But more than that I love to read books and write down my thoughts. I feel we can change the world by circulating the introspections of great columnists throughout the world. You are free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.