The Alchemist: A Journey Within

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho is a riveting tale of a young man’s quest that leads to his discovery of the language of the world.  Santiago is a young man in who travels from Spain to Egypt in search of his personal legend. Told in a simplistic manner that is engaging to all, the story of Santiago teaches us of the treasure that is within everyone. Santiago meets a King, a gypsy, a crystal merchant, the love of his life, and the alchemist on his journey. These people help reveal the importance of language, and as the story continues Santiago’s quest transforms itself from a physical search for treasure to an internal one. He discoveries that there is a soul to world and that everything is able to communicate because of this. Santiago informs us “I learned that the world has a soul, and that whoever understands that soul can also understand the language of things. I learned that many alchemists realized their destinies, and wound up discovering the Soul of the World, the Philosopher’s Stone, and the Elixir of Life. But above all, I learned that these things are all so simple they could be written on the surface of an emerald.” (Coelho 87). This knowledge allows him to study with the Alchemist causing him to learn the secrets of the world.  I would recommend The Alchemist as it is a thought provoking quest that pushes the reader to think about their own personal legend and the value that comes from studying the world around them.

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