Book 8 is an amazing book that has been out for sometime on the market. When it was first published in America, I remember hearing all the rave of this amazing life changing novel. It was also recommended to me by a coworker who said this book helped her understand and accept things in her life that previously she hadn't. Has it changed my life, not really, but it has changed my outlook at life, similar to my coworker, and that is important. The book I am referring to is The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. Now this book was not originally written in English, it was translated, but I think the translation did it justice. I don’t thing the English language changed anything about the underlying message this book is trying to convey. So my take on the novel will not at all make sense because it is a book that doesn’t translate in words when it is being described. Now I understand why so many people said you would have to read the book to understand why it is so good.
This book is about a boy’s journey in discovering himself, at least that is what the synopsis has said. The boy’s journey started because of a dream of a treasure but the treasure he finds is not material but more wisdom from his experiences. From that I took the message that it is not the destination is the reward but the journey to it that makes it all worthwhile.
Also there is this underlying theme, for me, that fear is what holds us back from realizing our true potential. We are so scared about losing what we already have that we do not take the risks to go for what we want. I have heard this before, somewhere, but it hasn’t struck a cord until I read this book. It really showcases that though there is a risk and a danger, in the end we all lose those worldly possession and only take with us our experiences.
Another lesson that intertwines with the previous is the pressure and focus we put on the past and the future that we forget the present and how the present is what is the most important. If we concentrate on the future and worry, it gives us more stress for worrying about something that will or will not happen. If something bad is to happen, we put ourselves through more grief dreading that bad then the grief from the bad event itself. We, ourselves, create the misery that we think will happen in the future. The same for when something good happens, the happiness and the joy we get minimizes because we are already anticipating this good event, we feel the emotions before it happens. I hope that makes sense. If we focus on the now, what happen will happen in the future but we can enjoy the present and be happy for that time.
Now there is one thing that I notice with this book and I would like to share. The journey of the boy is written so that you can see a little of yourself in the boy, so the lesson learned will not always be the same for each person that reads it. For some, this is a life-changing book because these teachings and lessons are some that they haven’t been exposed to. I was lucky that I have had such wise people around me to help me see small parts of these lessons so now that I have read the book, it makes me understand what my family and friends have told me little by little as I grew up and has given me some peace of mind when I am usually very anxious. I focus a lot on the future and on what might happen, that I often forget to remember that those things have not happened and I shouldn’t be fearful of them because it is not guarantee that they will. My dad once told me that you should plan for the worst and hope for the best and everything will work out somewhere in-between. That has helped me a lot in my life and I think that I kind of understand now what my dad was telling. Don’t worry about what you can’t change, and concentrate on what you can. I know that doesn’t specifically align with this lesson about not worrying about the future to many people but it coincides with other lessons I have learned and makes sense to me. Remember when I said this book teaches different things for whom ever reads it, this is what I mean. You will always be mindful of the future because it is there but instead of worrying about what will happen and what won’t happen, the only thing you can control is your reaction to it. Don’t know if that makes sense to everyone else, but it does to me.
Anyways, this is where I will leave you. This book was a really quick read for me and I could not put it down because I found it so interesting. It didn’t bring me to tears or change my life but changed my perspective on things and that is also important. For those who feel so much of the negativity that is out there on social media, the news, and the gossip that runs through this world, this is a good book to read. I feel like it would give you some peace. Only you can achieve your true potential and you have to be willing to take the risk of going for it.
Let's enjoy the many worlds there are to enjoy, in just our own heads.