My heart and I chatted, and we agreed, this book was short My heart thinks it was also stupid, and after spending some time talking to the wind, I came to agree with my heart Yet, after beginning the journey with this book and despite the words of my heart, something impelled me to continue Surely it had something to teach me The book had a lovely cover made of nicely textured stock that felt good in my hands It offered the added efficiency of a fold over flap something that publishers should make an effort to do, as it makes the use of a bookmark superfluous But I suppose you need the collateral of winning the Guinness World Record for most translated book by a living author, and selling than 65 million copies in than 150 countries as one of the best selling books in history, to get that treatmentmy heart cries In my country, we have an expression one should not judge a book by its cover In this case, this is especially true The prose turned out to be not nearly as nicely textured That is irony This book knows not of irony Still, though, I needed to complete my journey My heart tugged on my sleeve.As I continued my journey, I found that the text inside was set in a pleasing font I could find no typos, which are always a portent of doom So I kept going I found the words that the font expressed were simple and easy to read As I read them before falling to sleep each night, they neither challenged me nor troubled my dreams Many people, I believe, enjoy this in a book, in the same way that they enjoy Hostess Twinkies They are filled up with calories, which causes their bodies to believe that they have been fed a nutritious meal, when in fact their brains are lulled into sheep like somnambulism They grow fat and stupid er under the illusion that they have received nutrition without ever experiencing the pain of having to cook, and possibly work up a sweat or burn one s fingers.I wondered if this book was possibly dangerous I wondered what kind of people would be deluded into thinking, within the guise of a poorly written but deviously well conceived parable, that this book s philosophy was, in fact, Deep and Meaningful Truth This book, I felt, was perhaps insidiously evil, a force with which I needed to do battle I did not know which weapon to use, as irony appears to be rendered completely ineffective within a 3 metre radius of this book Still, irony and a love of absurdity hovered around me as I searched for the true meaning in this book, and why it appears to offer a powerful message to so many.I consulted the Oracle, known across all the lands by many names She appeared to me in the form of Wikipedia, Queen of All The People s Knowledge Now, there s an alchemist for you Queen Wiki can turn knowledge into nonsense and then back again before your very eyes The perfect Oracle for this book.Queen Wiki turned out to be very entertaining and illuminating in this case I learned that Joe Jonas and Russell Crowe loved this book I glommed on to this as an omen that absurdity was lurking close I interpreted it as a sign that I must continue Again, I was struck by the irony of that, but turning back to the book, this fleeting insight that might have had a grain of real value was immediately squelched I sipped some sweet tea from a crystal goblet, and plodded on through the desert of thought that is this book.This, I felt, was the lesson to be learned in the Middle of the Centre of the Soul of the World, where blank eyed acolytes are led like sheep hmmm to unquestioningly accept and proclaim as truth the vacuous platitudes spouted by crystal wearing, self appointed mystics, psychics, tarot card readers, numerologists, motivational speakers and this author, irony is dead Absurdity goes unrecognized Skepticism is turned back at the gates by ill formed philosophies based on the unwavering power of evangelical groupthink and our species rather fascinating susceptibility to cognitive bias, or errors in thinking, that cause us to believe as truth that which can actually be scientifically validated as false.This book makes a mockery of spirituality and the search for truth and meaning, under the guise of the easy, anxiety quelling New Age philosophies that spoon feed the stupid with Twitter sized bites of nonsense Beliefs like, good things happen to good people All is right in the end If it s not right, it s not the end God doesn t give you anything you can t handle To be shelved between this and this to gather dust and never to be read again Do not trade or give away you ll just be spreading the bullshit.My heart will go on. Utter drivel The book was badly written, righteous, condescending, preachy, and worst of all, the ending was morally questionable All the fables and stories are stolen from elsewhere, religious ideas and spirituality are badly mixed, and everything is so obvious.The book harps on about tapping into the Soul of the World, the Language of the World, about your one true path and other nonsense The basic idea is that if you really want something and listen to your heart , the whole universe will help you achieve it if you only look for omens A questionable idea in a world where people no longer want to work hard and achieve independently.It reads like a really bad self help book written for 8 year old children and disguised as a symbolic parable I read a lot of books and I can safely say this is the worst book I have ever read It s only saving grace was that it was mercifully short. Paulo Coelho S Masterpiece Tells The Mystical Story Of Santiago, An Andalusian Shepherd Boy Who Yearns To Travel In Search Of A Worldly Treasure His Quest Will Lead Him To Riches Far Different And Far Satisfying Than He Ever Imagined Santiago S Journey Teaches Us About The Essential Wisdom Of Listening To Our Hearts, Of Recognizing Opportunity And Learning To Read The Omens Strewn Along Life S Path, And, Most Importantly, To Follow Our Dreams . I hate this book so much I used to work at a hippie vegetarian restaurant where everyone raved about it, so I should have known what a disaster it would be Writing in the style of a fable does not convince me that what the author says is true or profound, this just sucks all around, and people who describe it as magical or inspirational are probably dudes I will not be having a beer with anytime soon This guy, he s probably going to get a Nobel one day, too. The problem with this book is not just that it s bad, which it certainly is, but that there are so many people out there who want to corner you at parties and tell you how it s totally changed their lives In a way you might as well read it just so you can see how feeble minded they must be to get any kind of philosophical nourishment out of this inexhaustible stream of clich s The profound lessons you ll learn from this book amount to nothing than several variations on the theme of only the very ugly is truly beautiful, only the very stupid are really intelligent, only black is white, only up is down etc etc.The writing is too simple to be really bad, but it s the content that gets you By the end of the book you ll want to track down the philosopher s stone yourself and carefully beat Coelho to death with it. I need to start this review by stating 1 I can t stand self help books and 2 I m a feminist no, I don t hate men some men are quite awesome, but I am very conscious of women and our place in the world Short summary mild spoilers A boy named Santiago follows his Personal Legend in traveling from Spain to the Pyramids in Egypt searching for treasure Along the way, he learns the Language of the World the Soul of the World and discovers that the Soul of God is his own soul If the statements in quotes above personal legend , etc fascinate you, then you ll enjoy this book If you think they are hokey and silly, then you ll think this is a terrible book If you think statements such as When you want something, all the universe conspires you to achieve it and All things are one are moving and life changing, you ll love this book If such statements have you rolling your eyes, then this isn t your cup of tea.Its not that I find anything wrong with these messages They are important, but must be balanced with responsibility In my experience, following your dreams or personal legend is not the only way toward wisdom and strength Is the person who struggles to put food on the table every day for his or her family, consciously realizing that he or she may not be following his or her personal legend any less heroic than some traveler who leaves everything and everyone he or she is responsible for to go on a spiritual quest Coelho comes close to labeling such people, as losers in life, which I find completely off the mark as some of these people have the most to offer in terms of wisdom.The issue of responsibility is also part of this book s sexism The main male characters in the novel have Personal Legends they are either seeking them, or have achieved them, or have failed to achieve them But Coelho never mentions Personal Legend with regard to women, other than to say that Fatima, Santiago s fiance, is a part of Santiago s Personal Legend Thats fine, but what about her own Personal Legend Instead of traveling to find her dreams, she is content to sit around, do chores, and stare everyday at the desert to wait for his return This is her fate as a desert women The fact that women don t have Personal Legends is even galling considering the fact that according to Coelho, even minerals such as lead and copper have Personal Legends, allowing them to evolve to something better ie, gold.In the ideal world presented in THE ALCHEMIST, it seems that the job of men is to seek out their personal legends, leaving aside thoughts of family and responsibility, and its the job of women to let them, and pine for their return Of course, someone has to do the unheroic, inconvenient work of taking care of the children, the animals, the elderly, the illIf everyone simply goes off on spiritual quests, deciding they have no responsibility other than to seek their Personal Legends, no one would be taking responsibility for the unglamorous work that simply has to take place for the world to run.On the other hand, what if both men and women are allowed to struggle towards their Personal Legends, and help each other as best as they can towards them, but recognize that their responsibilities may force them to defer, compromise, or even sacrifice their dreams This may seem depressing, but it isn t necessarily Coelho seems to think that Personal Legends are fixed at childhood or at birth, or even before and are not changeable they have to be followed through to the end, no matter how silly But in my experience, many people have chosen to adjust, compromise, and even give up on their dreams, only to find that life grants them something better, or they have a new, better dream to follow, a path providing greater wisdom For me, these people have a realistic, humble, fair, and less cliched vision of the world than Paulo Coelho s vision in THE ALCHEMIST. when you really want something, the whole universe conspires in helping you to achieve it This book has crossed the boundaries of books, and has taken a life of its own, creating a movement all around the globe.Santiago s journey and spiritual quest, the people he meets, the dreams he has, the omens he encounters, and the nature he speaks to, are all things that we can relate to..things that we ve either forgotten about or simply dismissed as childhood fantasies It is all about finding your Personal Legend and pursuing your dream regardless of any hurdles, and about being spiritually connected to the universe, which is part of us, and part of God we are all one.Reading this book always sets me back on the right path towards achieving the dreams I have put on hold We always try to do what everyone expects of us like pursuing a career that you hate just because that is what everyone does Recognizing my personal legend, being able to talk to the trees, sky, ants, the core of the earth, the air particles, and to my heart, feeling a deeper spiritual connection with everything everyone that is around me, feeling God inside me, and not being afraid of failing or facing challenges are just some of the few things this book has given me.It is maktub that Coelho writes this book, shares it with the world, and affect so many lives This masterwork is a legend and a precious treasure. A good parable like The Prodigal Son should comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable The problem with this little book is that it does precisely the opposite.Coelho s message and, boy, is this a book with a message is that each of us has his own Personal Legend, and that if we recognize that legend and pursue it sincerely, everything in the Universe which is after all made up wind, stone, trees of the same stuff we are will conspire to help us achieve it Corollaries 1 people who don t recognize their legends are never happy, 2 people who fail to realize their legends are afraid, and 3 people who refuse to pursue their legends, even when they know what they are, are both unhappy and afraid I admit I ve left out a nuance or two here and there, but not many There aren t than three or four nuances in the book I fear that the result of taking such a message seriously will be to make the successful even self satisfied, the narcissistic self absorbed, and the affluent self congratulatory At the same time, those who are unfortunate will blame themselves for their bad fortune, those who lack self esteem will lose what little they have, and the poor will see no, not God, as the beatitude says, but the poor will see they have only themselves to blame.Perhaps I am being too harsh I can see how a few individual young persons, hemmed in by parental expectations and seeking their own paths, may find enough hope and courage here to help them venture forth But I am convinced the damage done by books like this like The Secret, The Celestine Prophecy, and anything ever written by the late Dr Wayne Dyer or, for that matter, anything he may ever choose to channel from beyond the grave is far greater than the little good they may achieve.If you like parables, don t read this book Go read a book of Hasidic tales collected by Martin Buber, a book of Sufi stories collected by Idries Shah, or a book of parables and sayings by Anthony de Mello instead.Or then again, you could just try Jesus Jesus is always good. I feel like everyone LOVES this book, but I was kind of underwhelmed I know that translation affects the quality of writing, but I could not get into this writing style At all I felt like it was totally affected and contrived He was going for this fable parable style, but it seemed to fail miserably The parable like quality was totally contrived, and I thought the moral was pretty stupid Moral everything you want and need is close to home Take chances Follow your personal legacy Then.there was a supernatural element which was just plain dumb Granted, I am not religious I think god fearing people get out of this bc they can take that leap of faith, excuse the phrase If this was supposed to be a story of magic, I may have been into it But it was supposed to be a simple story of knowing yourself And I think, philosophically speaking, when you truly know yourself that is when you truly realize your destiny Why do you need supernatural forces to convey that message This was about realizing your destiny, or personal legacy It could have been done without the hocus pocus, and, yes, the cheese In short, the book attempted to be deep and failed Speaking with the wind and the sun and being a shepherd and getting over personal hardship all as part of a transparent higher plan read personal legacy doesn t make a plot deep A character simply called boy and short sentences doesn t make a story a fable Learning from your flocks and from nature doesn t make a character inexplicably wise I really got nothing out of this book.It is short though The book came very highly recommended Read it to judge the hype for yourself After all, a whole nation, including Bill Clinton who I m into , thought it was a touching account that personally changed them Then again, this is the same country who thought The Celestine Prophesy was worthwhile Gag.
The Brazilian author PAULO COELHO was born in 1947 in the city of Rio de Janeiro Before dedicating his life completely to literature, he worked as theatre director and actor, lyricist and journalist In 1986, PAULO COELHO did the pilgrimage to Saint James of Compostella, an experience later to be documented in his book The Pilgrimage In the following year, COELHO published The Alchemist Slow in
- 197 pages
- O Alquimista
- Paulo Coelho
- 12 March 2018 Paulo Coelho