Sunday, March 15, 2015

Book Review: Motorcycle Diaries by Che Guevara 5 STARS MUST READ

Spent this morning with a real treat.. the dairies of Che on his epic Latin America adventure.

The chronicles of a young Che Guevara’s journey through Latin America, and the transformation of the man to become the legend he is. This is a wonderuful story of and reminded me of a wonderful Joseph Campbell quote “We’re not on our journey to save the world but to save ourselves. But in doing that you save the world. The influence of a vital person vitalizes.” This is the story of how Che goes on his self discovery/journey to become vitally human, and one might argue that how he in so many ways revitalized humanity around him.

The story begins with the “call to adventure” and to explore the whole of Latin America on a motorcycle. Many adventures later, they lose their beloved motorcyle and continue their journey on foot. in the hope of reaching the northern most point of Latin America

The story is gripping, reminded me a lot of Jack Kerouac. The turning point comes when young Che sees the plight of the Peruvian mine workers and natives. Here is drawn to something greater than himself, and begins to stir his very soul. As the hero’s journey unfolds Che has a run in with a doctor treating leprosy. His heart calls him to apprentice and serve a much grander vision of himself. He begins his service at a leprosy camp in San Pablo helping serve something greater than himself.

ON his 24th birthday he realizes “that seperation of various nations of Latin America is a fallacy, and all of Latin America is but one race.” And the new vision of the possible life enters his life, and through him into Latin America. He then faces his greatest fear of Asthama in a daring midnight swim across the cold river. A new man is born as he says goodbye to Peru. The aimless roaming across America by two men not only changed them, but changed the course of history in the process.

Take those journeys of solitude seriously and as study the lives of men who have dared to do so before us. As the eminent historian Will Durant says in his wonderful essay called a Shamelss Worship of Heroes “To contemplate such men, to insinuate ourselves through study into some modest discipleship to them, to watch them at their work and warm ourselves at the fire that consumes them, this is to recapture some of the thrill that youth gave us when we thought, at the altar or in the confessional, that we were touching or hearing God.”

This is the story one one such man. I am going to be visiting this story/book again and again

PS: I got a few messages asking me about my political leanings on the polorising Che.
This books is NOT about his political writings.. what I read was the conditions in the making of a very charismatic leader. You can choose to agree/disagree with his stances, the fact remains, in his becoming he changed the geo-political landscape. And as far as I go, this story is a HUMAN STORY, and worth a read/watch

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