For this assignment, I choose The Alchemist. It a novel by Paulo Coelho, originally published in 1988. The book concerns the journey of a boy, Santiago, a shepherd in Andalusian, who embarks on a journey in search of a treasure that is promised to him in a prophetic dream. At the beginning of the book, a gypsy fortune teller affirms to him that his treasures, which equals to his dream, is in Egypt where he must travel. Santiago sells his sheep to an old king Melchizedek and starts a challenging journey through Egypt for many years. In the journey, Santiago meets an Alchemist who helps him to realize his true self, his oneness with the universe, and the precise location of his treasures. Coelho reveals through Santiago’s journey that one must master perseverance, believe in their potential, and sacrifice to achieve their dreams.
The text is critical to me as it concerns the journey towards the realization of a dream. Like Santiago, I am sensitized to the signs that suggest the direction towards the pinnacle of my dreams. I am keen to seek guidance to people who have expertise in various areas, and whom I consider to have appropriate experience. Besides, Harburg (2) suggests that the lessons and experience of Santiago are a viable frame to align life out of danger, and is the most probable way of achieving my dreams.
Before reading The Alchemist, I viewed the world as generous with resources to some people. Coelho disagrees with my perspective by depicting everyone as equals, and that “when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it” regardless of identity (Lovecraft, 9). Besides, I agree with him that “it’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting” (Lovecraft, 4). I believe that having a dream streamlines one’s purpose. Also, intuition helps in understanding what is right or wrong, since it is the “immersion of the soul into the universal current of life” (Lovecraft, 31).
That way, The Alchemist addresses the approach in life regarding the achievement of dreams and the relationship with other people and the world. He depicts relationships with people as a critical source of love and motivation. However, neither family or love or hate should stop one from pursuing their dreams (Lovecraft, 42). Coelho appreciates diversity in faith, traditions, and the importance of all social classes as he depicts all of them to influence Santiago’s journey (Mayer n.p) critically. He appreciates diversity and notes that “No matter what one does, every person on earth plays a central role in the history of the world” (Lovecraft, 70). That way, Coelho strengthens my approach towards diversity. For instance, I view everyone as critical members of human society, regardless of their faith, color, or sexuality.
The Alchemist is both an informative and entertaining text. The artistic skills of Coelho make the book interesting to read. He uses analogies to simplify sophisticated ideas. For instance, he writes that “everything that happens once can never happen again. But everything that happens twice will surely happen a third time.” Hence, a reader wants to continue reading since Santiago’s journey is full of interesting experiences (Lovecraft, 68).
Overall, The Alchemist is an informative text about the lessons towards the achievement of a dream. I look forward to reading such books and other texts from Coelho, such as Eleven Minutes. I recommend the text since it is both informative and interesting to read. It is ideal for youths who have ample time ahead of them to work on their lives and careers.
Harburg, Edgar. Follow Your Heart, Live Your Dreams. https://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/bitstream/10603/74262/9/09_chapter%20ii.pdf. Accessed 2 May 2020.
Lovecraft, H. P. The Alchemist. The Floating Press, 2016. Mayer, Claude-Hélène. “Research Findings And Discussion On Paulo Coelho’S Life”. The Life And Creative Works Of Paulo Coelho, 2017, pp. 181-325. Springer International Publishing, d