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Elizabeth Gilbert is the author of Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia. It is the story of a year-long journey she took following a devastating divorce and love affair that left her questioning the most fundamental notions of who she was and where she was going. She decided she would do three things she thought would be spiritually nurturing and sustaining. She had always wanted to learn Italian, which she thought was the most beautiful language. She began in Italy, being kind to herself, and that included not just learning Italian but, as the title of the book suggests, eating Italian, too. Once she felt physically restored, she went to India, to commune with the divine. She meditated in an ashram, learning patience and humility. And then she went to Bali, where a shaman had once invited her to return, to try to achieve balance. The book inspired this week’s feature film, with Julia Roberts. Those interested in the real story can find an update on the book’s most beloved characters on Gilbert’s website.

Here, Gilbert talks briefly to fans about the themes of the book and her hopes that readers will not just imitate her journey but find their own.

And here is a video of one of the people she wrote about in her book, Ketut Liyer of Bali.

Gilbert’s TED talk about the sources of creativity is truly inspiring:

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