What’s Normal? (by Paulo Coelho)

I had first posted this exactly a year ago, and it continues to be one of the most visited posts. So here’s a repost. It was written by Paulo Coelho on his blog:

I decided to conduct a survey among my friends about what society considers to be normal behavior. What follows is a list I have made of some of the absurd situations we face in day-to-day life, just because society sees them as normal:

1] Anything that makes us forget our true identity and our dreams and makes us only work to produce and reproduce.

2] Making rules for a war (the Geneva Convention).

3] Spending years at university and then not being able to find a job.

4] Working from nine in the morning to five in the afternoon at something that does not give us the least pleasure, so that we can retire after 30 years.

5] Retiring only to discover that we have no more energy to enjoy life, and then dying of boredom after a few years.

6] Using Botox.

7] Trying to be financially successful instead of seeking happiness.

8] Ridiculing those who seek happiness instead of money by calling them “people with no ambition”.

9] Comparing objects like cars, houses and clothes, and defining life according to these comparisons instead of really trying to find out the true reason for being alive.

10] Not talking to strangers. Saying nasty things about our neighbors. Continue reading