The Legend of the Red Thread
“You will never be able to escape your heart, so you better listen to what it has to say…” – Paulo Coelho, “The Alchemist”
There’s an ancient myth that it doesn’t matter what kind of relationship two people are in at the time, or whether these two lovers are worlds apart.
If they’re meant to be, they will always be connected by a “red thread”—although it might not happen until the end of the road.
This red thread, known as destiny, can never be broken, no matter what happens.
It doesn’t matter how long it takes you to meet this person, or how long you spend apart. Even if you live on other sides of the world, the thread will stretch so that your hearts are always connected.
The thread is with you from birth, and it spins throughout your life. It’s said that the moon emerges every evening to meet each newborn and unite these new souls with a red thread that’s tied around her finger.
It will decide your future, and guide your soul through life so that you’ll never be lost, even at the edges of the earth.
As the legend tells us:
Long, long ago, an emperor learned that there was a powerful witch who lived in one of the provinces of his kingdom. She had the ability to view the red string of fate, and he sent for her presence.
When the witch arrived, the emperor ordered her to look at the other end of his red thread, and tell him who would eventually become his wife. The witch agreed to his request, and she began to follow the thread.
The search led to a market, where a poor peasant woman with a baby in her arms was selling her wares. The witch stopped in front of this peasant, and asked her to stand up.
She then beckoned the young emperor near and said, “Here ends your thread.” When he heard this, the emperor was furious, and thinking that the witch was playing a trick on him, he pushed the peasant woman aside as she still held her child in her arms. The fall caused a wound on the child’s forehead that it would wear forever.
He ordered his guards to detain the witch and had her beheaded.
Many years later, it was time for the emperor to marry, and his court recommended that it was best for him to wed the daughter of a powerful general in the kingdom. He agreed and eventually the wedding day arrived.
On that day, he saw his future wife’s face for the first time. When she arrived to the court she wore a white gown and a veil that covered her face completely. When he lifted it, he saw that her beautiful face was marred by an unusual scar on her forehead.
This legend is so well-known among European cultures that today it’s not uncommon to see millions of people who wear a piece of red string tied to their wrists.
As for the exact origin of the story, it’s unclear whether it was conceived in China or Japan. But the legend began when it was discovered that the ulnar artery connects your ring finger to your heart, the source of your life and the metaphorical corner of the soul that harbors your ability to love. (Other sources refer to the middle finger, typically more in the Western tradition.)
The red thread can connect the love between a mother and father, a brother and sister, friends, or partners, with the same goal: to know and to love one another.
The great loves of your life
“They say that throughout your life you have two great loves: one is the person who you marry or live with forever, who might become the mother or father of your children… the person you’ll spend the rest of your life with.
But they also say there’s a second great love, the person you will always lose. Someone who you were born connected to, so bound together that the chemical forces defy reason but will also prevent you from reaching a happy ending.
One day you’ll give up trying… you surrender your search and seek that other person that you finally encounter. But be warned that that you’ll never pass another night without longing for their touch, a kiss, the chance to talk with them once again.
You know who I’m talking about because as you read those words, their name came into your head. You might have left them behind, tried to end your suffering and find peace (which will come), but there won’t be a single day that you don’t wish they would appear once more to visit you.
Sometimes it seems that fighting with someone you truly love takes more energy from you than being with someone you simply care for.”
– Paulo Coelho
Every now and then, these two types of love match within the same person. But typically they are found separately, continuously generating some form of grief. Both kinds of love are essential to life itself, and you should be thankful for the ability to feel so deeply.
You can’t impose your will on your red thread. Even your own ignorance cannot sever it because while it may be invisible to you, it still directs many of your steps in life.
The appearance of the “red thread of love” symbolizes the before and after of your life, and it’s something that you’ll find will forever alter your existence and your conception of love itself.
Sometimes coincidences are so strong that they cannot happen only by chance. Everyone’s heart on this planet is interwoven in some way with another in eternal love.
They call them soulmates, spirits with the same destination…