Eat pray love gilbert, elizabeth, Ешь, молись, люби

1. Gilbert, Elizabeth, date — Travel. 2. Travelers’
writings, American. I. Title.
G154.5.G55A3 2006
910.4 — dc22

[B] 2005042435
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Eat, Pray, Love

For Susan Bowen — who provided refuge

even from 12,000 miles away
Eat, Pray, Love
Tell the truth, tell the truth, tell the truth.*
— Sheryl Louise Moller

* Except when attempting to solve emergency Balinese real estate transactions, such as
described in Book 3.
Eat, Pray, Love
CONTENTS

Introduction

Book One

Final Recognition and Reassurance

Eat, Pray, Love

Introduction

or

How This Book Works

or

The 109th Bead

When you’re traveling in India — especially through holy sites and Ashrams — you see a lot
of people wearing beads around their necks. You also see a lot of old photographs of naked,
skinny and intimidating Yogis (or sometimes even plump, kindly and radiant Yogis) wearing
beads, too. These strings of beads are called japa malas. They have been used in India for
centuries to assist devout Hindus and Buddhists in staying focused during prayerful meditation.
The necklace is held in one hand and fingered in a circle — one bead touched for every
repetition of mantra. When the medieval Crusaders drove East for the holy wars, they witnessed
worshippers praying with these japa malas, admired the technique, and brought the
idea home to Europe as rosary.

The traditional japa mala is strung with 108 beads. Amid the more esoteric circles of Eastern
philosophers, the number 108 is held to be most auspicious, a perfect three-digit multiple
of three, its components adding up to nine, which is three threes. And three, of course, is the
number representing supreme balance, as anyone who has ever studied either the Holy Trinity
or a simple barstool can plainly see. Being as this whole book is about my efforts to find
balance, I have decided to structure it like a japa mala, dividing my story into 108 tales, or
beads. This string of 108 tales is further divided into three sections about Italy, India and Indonesia —
the three countries I visited during this year of self-inquiry. This division means that
there are 36 tales in each section, which appeals to me on a personal level because I am writing
all this during my thirty-sixth year.

Now before I get too Louis Farrakhan here with this numerology business, let me conclude
by saying that I also like the idea of stringing these stories along the structure of a japa mala
because it is so . . . structured. Sincere spiritual investigation is, and always has been, an endeavor
of methodical discipline. Looking for Truth is not some kind of spazzy free-for-all, not