Paulo Coelho, looking bored but patient, head resting on left handMyth 3: God is sacrifice.

Many people seek the path of sacrifice and self-immolation, stating that we must suffer in this world in order to find happiness in the next. Now, if this world is a blessing from God, why not try to enjoy to the full the delights that life offers us? We are very accustomed to the image of Christ nailed to the Cross; but we forget that his Passion lasted only three days. The rest of the time he spent travelling, meeting people, eating, drinking, and preaching his message of tolerance, so much so that his first miracle was, in a sense, 'politically incorrect', for when the wine ran out at the Cana wedding, he turned the water into wine. He did this, I believe, to demonstrate to us all that there is nothing wrong with being happy, enjoying yourself, joining in with the party, because God is much closer to us when we are with others. Mohammed said: 'If we are unhappy, we bring unhappiness upon our friends also.' Buddha, after a long period of trial and renunciation, was so weak that he almost drowned; when he was rescued by a shepherd, he understood that isolation and sacrifice distance us from the miracle of life.
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