Humans and their Hearts

From The Alchemist, a conversation between the boy and the alchemist:

"My heart is a traitor…it doesn't want me to go on."

"That makes sense… Naturally it's afraid that, in pursuing your dream, you might lose everything you've won."

"Well, then, why should I listen to my heart?"

"Because you will never again be able to keep it quiet.  Even if you pretend not to have heard what it tells you, it will always be there inside you, repeating to you what you're thinking about life and about the world."

"You mean I should listen to my heart, even if it's treasonous?"

"Treason is a blow that comes unexpectedly.  If you know your heart well, it will never be able to do that to you.  Because you'll know its dreams and wishes, and will know how to deal with them.  You will never be able to escape from your heart.  So it's better to listen to what it has to say.  That way, you'll never have to fear an unanticipated blow."

"My heart is afraid that it will have to suffer…."

"Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself.  And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a second's encounter with God and with eternity."

That night, the boy slept deeply, and, when he awoke, his heart began to tell him things that came from the Soul of the World.  It said that all people who are happy have God within them.  And that happiness could be found in a grain of sand from the desert, as the alchemist had said.  Because a grain of sand is a moment of creation, and the universe has taken millions of years to create it.  "Everyone on earth has a treasure that awaits him," his heart said.  "We, people's hearts, seldom say much about those treasures, because people no longer want to go in search of them.  We speak of them only to children.  Later, we simply let life proceed, in its own direction, toward its own fate.  But, unfortunately, very few follow the path laid out for them–the path to their Personal Legends, and to happiness.  Most people see the world as a threatening place, and, because they do, the world turns out, indeed, to be a threatening place.

"So, we, their hearts, speak more and more softly. We never stop speaking out, but we begin to hope that our words won't be heard: we don't want people to suffer because they don't follow their hearts."

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