An amazing story with everything one could expect to be in it – and much more! The Alchemist was a book I had mainly heard from others was boring. But I never found it even close to that. It was gripping, if not in its storyline (ok, if you read books only for a story, you may not like this book…) it was captivating in its insightful philosophies. For one of the first times, I actually found the reviews about the book true, it was one of the first books I had read in my life which actually changed the way I think about living through life. It talked about zillions of things in extremely simple ways, so simple that you feel very hard-hit by their elementary truthfulness. It even concludes in the end, in one of the ways that the one of the biggest problems of humanity was their belief that nothing could be as simple and clear as it is. The real alchemist also tells the protagonist, Santiago, that Alchemy wasn’t as great or tough as it had been made to look. The Alchemist had been successful in his science because he had recognized how it was his destiny to be able to heal people and also and that it was bound for him to be able to do that. He clearly says that the entire science of alchemy “had been written on an emerald tablet. But people had written thousands of books of thousands of pages after thousands of attempts because they did not manage to believe in the simpleness of life.
The book also talks detailedly about how one should follow his destiny as that was the only purpose of one’s life and existence. One’s destiny was written by the same hand, that of God, and so was the destiny of everything else. Also, everything was bound to each other by a unifying object called the Soul of the World. This reminded me of an Avatar episode in which the Avatar realizes that “everything is interconnected”, said in a much more encompassing statement in this book as “All things are one.” It also says how the soul of the World provided a medium for all sorts of life and also non-living objects to communicate with each other without the use of any orthodox or commonly known language. Following one’s destiny is the key theme of the book as written on the cover of the book, which says – “A magical Fable about following your dream”. It says a lot of things as to how the most important thing in the world for any one person was to follow his dream as that was a sign of his destiny. How the entire universe conspires to make you successful in whatever you desire to achieve (This line disclosed the source of the highly popular line of OSO which happened to be a straight rip-off or translation of the original English sentence), and how the Soul of the World tries its best to guide you through to your destiny by leaving a trail of omens and it all depended if one chose to follow them and get subdued by the oppressive noise made by everyone around who talked about what other would become. It said that very often people get more involved in thinking about the destinies and characters of other people and in the process forget thinking about their own destinies. Following your heart was an essential step in reaching your destiny as it was bound to the Soul of the World and knew what one wanted to achieve. It also told us throughout our lives what we ought to be but if we, like average people ignored it for long, its voice got lost in the din of the surrounding world. Also, when one set out to follow one’s heart he was greeted by something the book called beginner’s luck in which the person was extremely lucky in his initial attempts. [This beginner’s luck was an omen of the Soul of the World to us that we were on the right path and ought to follow it.] It also said that after one’s beginner’s luck dried up, most people gave up on their dreams and ended up failing in achieving their destiny however close they had reached to it. That is how the achieving of one’s destiny always started with beginner’s luck but ended with the warrior’s victory. I felt very touched by the entire story and for the first time, due to the relation with the universe’s omens, I did not feel that the twists and turns were misplaced and also felt that they might have been very real for all I know.