Sunday, August 15, 2010

Eat, Pray, Love, and Shoot Me in the Head

If you clicked on this post looking for a sarcastic, snarky indictment of Eat Pray Love  the book or the movie, then sorry, but that's not what I'm about today. My colorful choice of words has more to do with my state of mind after watching the film in relation to my own life journey. I actually connected with the book quite a bit when I read it a couple years back. And although the movie was much less enjoyable than the book, I don't think it deserves some of the scorn it's gotten. That being said, I understand why people are not that into the book. More after the jump...

Some see Elizabeth Gilbert as a whiny, rich, privileged woman who had a successful career and a devoted husband, yet selfishly left him to go on a year-long quest to find herself. Since this is a luxury that 99 percent of us cannot afford, how dare she complain about her life? I mean well, damn. She's got hot men falling for her left and right, mad dough, lots of friends and a phat NYC apartment. Shoot, a lot folks would be happy with just one of these blessings. Her problems seem minuscule compared to the issues of abuse, addiction and poverty that many women deal with. However, I think that her journey is similar to an artist's, in that she was brave enough to follow her heart. Society told her that she should be content because she had everything on the list: success, money, and a husband that wasn't abusive. However, since she was still not content, she took action. Society tells artists that they should be content in a practical, stable jobs just like everyone else, but we must be brave enough to take the action that leads us to our purpose. 

The lesson that I took from the book is: Take the time to examine your life and change what you don't like. Seems simple enough. However, it's so easy to get caught up in doing what you are SUPPOSED to do, going through the necessary motions of life that what you actually WANT can get lost in the shuffle. Seeing the movie the other night made me think that I may have gotten lost in the shuffle. Hence the brief suicidal urge:) More on this tomorrow... 

Have you seen the movie? Read the book? What did you think?
Arts

2 comments:

  1. http://secondhandmuse.wordpress.com/2010/08/16/verb-verb-verb-a-look-at-narrative-discourse-in-reviews-of-eat-pray-love/#comment-30

    that is my friend's blog and her musings on the Eat Pray Love fiasco. it's amusing and thought you might enjoy :)

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  2. "Society tells artists that they should be content in a practical, stable jobs just like everyone else, but we must be brave enough to take the action that leads us to our purpose."

    This is such an important message to take from that book. Instead of being angry at her for not being content with her "luxuries," people should instead see it as a very important and cautionary tale. The perfect job, husband, apartment, and body does not automatically equal happiness. Happiness has to come from within. If your soul isn't at peace, no amount of "stuff" will fix that. Elizabeth figured that out while she still had time to do something about it.

    Artists and entrepreneurs apparently have a lot in common Grace!

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