Legend has it that right after his Enlightenment, Buddha decided to go for a walk in the country. On the way he came upon a farmer, who was impressed at the light shining from the master.
My friend, who are you? asked the farmer. Because I have the feeling that I am standing before an angel, or a God.
I am nothing of the sort, answered Buddha.
Maybe you’re a powerful sorcerer?
Not that either.
So, what makes you so different from the others that even a simple peasant like me notices it?
I am just someone who has awoken to life. That’s all. But I tell everyone that, and nobody believes me.
Paulo Coelho is a Brazilian author who has sold more than 100 million books, which include 14 short story collections and the novel “The Alchemist.” He has been a fan of the Internet since the early 1990s. He spends at least three hours a day online, writing e-mails back and forth with his readers and posting photos on Flickr, MySpace and a blog.
Coelho’s online activities also include promoting pirated copies of his own books. Since 2005 he’s been directing his readers to an online site where they can download his books, in languages from German to Japanese, for free. “I always thought that when, at the beginning of your career, you strive to be read, you can’t change your mind later and become greedy about it.”