I've never been a huge Julia Roberts fan, though I can stomach her, a claim to fame my husband can't confidently make for himself. For me, the actress and my level of enchantment with her wasn't the problem. I think that the main character's - Elizabeth Gilbert's - journey to 'find herself' seemed futile and empty. My mother-in-law always used to say, "wherever you go, there you are," and I believe it to be true. I think that real enlightenment comes not from running away from life and it's accompanying problems, even in the name of mind expanding exotic travel, but from facing them and deriving strength from slowly growing courage borne of that act of standing up, shoulders back, staring them down and realizing that even this may not 'solve' anything, but that maybe that's ok. Strength can sometimes come by degrees - inch by inch - almost imperceptively until the gift of retrospect shows us how far we've come.
I've always felt saddened and discouraged at the Eat, Pray, Love notion that God is within me and that I am in some little understood sense, God. I need for my Creator to be significantly better than that. To see better, I need to look outside myself. Maybe I'm just more icky than your average professer of these beliefs, but I need a greater Hope. A stronger, more loyal Love.