The Alchemist, is a best-seller book, with over millions copies sold. When internet started to widespread in our lives, lots of books and movies were pirated . The Alchemist. Paulo Coelho. Introduction. Paulo Coelho's enchanting novel has inspired a devoted following around the world. This story, dazzling in its. Niklas Holmen Bertelsen The Postmodern Alchemist Dkx Tim Rudbøg The Postmodern Alchemist A Study of the Representation of Alchemy in .
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bwa yardim etsin. €€€Fakat Rab cevap verip dedi: €€€-€Marta, Marta, sen birçok sey-ler için üzülüp Paulo Coelho-L Alchimiste. Pages·· The Alchemist picked up a book that someone in the caravan had brought. The alchemist knew the legend of Narcissus, a youth who knelt daily beside a lake. The Alchemist. Paulo Coelho. Translated by Alan R. Clarke. Published ISBN CONTENTS. Part One. Part Two. Epilogue. PART ONE.
When he was in the town, he met a strange old man who knew how to read. Bantam Books, He urges the boy to not to linger in Oasis and to seek out his destiny, with his guidance Santiago again started traveling toward pyramids. See more. At first he develops a deep affection for the merchant daughter living in the town. In alchemy, Jung believed to have found the historical basis which his findings had so far been missing and with which he could substantiate his ideas of the unconscious
It is one of the most bestselling books in history by having 65 million copies sold out. Paulo Coelho was born in Brazil to an engineer father, but since his teenage he always wanted to be a writer. He was a natural rebel to traditional ways. When he was 17 his opposition to follow the typical path and introversion led his parents to admit him into a mental institution, from where he escaped three times, before being released at the age of After that, on his parent wishes he enrolled in a law school giving up his dream to be a writer.
But he dropped out after 1 year and started living life as hippie by traveling various countries around the world. I year 1 6, Coelho life took a drastic turn when he walked the plus mile Road of Santiago de Compostela in northwestern Spain, and the spiritual awakening he experienced helped him to start living up to his own dream.
He wrote an auto biographical ook The Pilgrimage about this jour ey. A year after this ook he rote Al he ist hi h as written in only two weeks and was initially published in a small publishing house in the quantity of The publishing house decided to not to reprint it. But in , the biggest publishing house in USA, Harper Collin decided to publish the book and it become instantly famous. Now since the publication of alchemist, Paulo Coelho generally publishes one book a year.
In total Coelho has written 30 books and has sold more than million books in over countries worldwide, and his works have been translated into 80 languages. Coelho also writes up to three blog posts a week at his blog. Paulo Coelho is the writer with the largest community online. The author has more than 25 million fans only on his Facebook main page and more than 10 million followers on Twitter.
He also has accounts on Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr, among others.
He manages his own social communities and has a strong interaction with his readers. Santiago is a young Andalusian shepherd who is on breach of adulthood and love to roam free in green pastures around and faraway from his home. He is mature, thoughtful and is a risk taker.
He is the one who dared to throw away the social pressure and lived up to his passion that was traveling. Santiago parents wanted him to be a priest, therefore he attended seminary until he was 16 year old. He studied Latin, Spanish and theology but his heart longs to explore the world more than knowing about God. His father was a wise man, he had years of experience and could see that his son has set his heart upon traveling but still to be sure he told him what he had learned from years of observation.
People fro all o er the orld ha e passed through this illage, son. They come in search of new things, but when they leave they are basically the same people they were when they arrived. But when his son insists, he guided hi to the possi le ay of follo i g his drea s. The people who come here have a lot of money to spend, so they can afford to travel. Amongst us, the only ones who travel are the shepherds. And this is why Santiago became a shepherd.
A desire that was still alive but was hidden carefully. In the struggle of managing a stable life style for his family, his father pushed aside the impulse to travel faraway lands.
Writer conveys that sometimes we are so occupied with maintaining our basic needs of life that we forget what we desire most.
He was sure that people would not understand. Since his first step out of home he saw many places and owned a few things, but most important was that he was able to live out of his dream every day. He sought new roads as much as it was possible. A d the the a t the perso to ha ge.
Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives but o e a out his or her o. He was free soul who cherished his freedom above all. Even though he left the seminary to chase his dream of exploring the wild, he loved to read. He always kept a book with him. The tell their i redi le stories at the ti e he ou a t to hear the.
First he decided to go to a gypsie woman to get the interpretation of his dream, even though he had heard about their bad reputation. Then he decided to find the treasure by following his dream and going into a country that he has never been before. He credits his sheepherding for his brave nature.
From the very start of the story, the philosophical yet simple nature of the hero is revealed on us by writer. Santiago ponders over things around him, often his sheep. He thought that some mysterious energy bound his life to that of his the sheep, with whom he had spent past two years. The flock and shepherd were so used of each other that they even knew the each other schedule. He had always believed that sheep were able to understand him. He read them aloud, his favorite parts from the books, he would tell them of loneliness and the happiness of a shepherd in the field.
He once told a girl, I lear ore fro y sheep than that fro ooks. But he sometimes gets frustrated by the amount of trust sheep put on him. The author brilliantly put into words the bitter reality of life. Living things start trusting each other so much that they eventually forget how to think on their own. They trust blindly and dangerously.
Talking about his sheep, boy thinks that If I e o e a o ster toda a d de ided to kill them, one by one, they would become aware only after most of the flock had been slaughtered. They trust me and they have forgotten how to rely on their own instincts because I lead them to ourish e t.
Santiago often compares life of human being to the lives of sheep. He observed that his flock live all their days in the same way, the only thing that concerned these creatures were food and water.
They never have to make decisions. The boy was considerate, he was always thinking and making his attitude more better than before. He possessed a ja ket to prote t hi fro ight old. In the words of the novelist He explained his behavior by saying this Whe he thought to o plai a out the burden of its weight, he remembered that, because he had the jacket, he withstood the cold of dawn.
Santiago has reached the threshold of maturity. He had a typical heart of a man, on whom a woman could affect with so much intensity that they forget the joys of their carefree wandering. At first he develops a deep affection for the merchant daughter living in the town. It was because of that girl, he for the first time experience the desire to live in one place forever. For two days he continues to dream a same dream.
The she tells hi that if you o e here, you ill fi d a treasure. A d just as she as a out to sho hi the lo atio , he oke up both times. Boy decided to ask a gypsy woman for interpretation, who simply tells the boy that he must go to the pyramids in Egypt, and find the treasure the child told him about.
Santiago was disappointed by the simple interpretation of his dream. When he was in the town, he met a strange old man who knew how to read. The man takes the book that Santiago was reading and declares that that book had same topic as all the other books in the world have.
The boy went back to contemplating the silence of the desert, and the sand raised by the animals. The contrast between the two characters is clear from the moment they meet. The Englishman, excited to teach the boy about alchemy, lends him some of his books. Gold would lose its value. This position clearly contrasts the modern notion that esoteric knowledge should be made readily available to all who wish to seek it.
Throughout the novel, alchemy performs as a metaphor for personal and spiritual enlightenment. Thus, as mentioned earlier, the Master Work is not only the transformation of lead into gold but also the development of the self. And while the Englishman believes that the Master Work is only for the few, the overall message of the novel seems to be that everyone can reach this level of spiritual enlightenment much more easily than we have generally been led to believe.
The fact that Santiago, a young shepherd, is able to achieve the Master Work just as easily, or perhaps more so, as the scholar, could be argued to symbolize the development that Possamai notes in which the gap between high culture and mass culture has been narrowed considerably Throughout the story, there is also a sense that we once knew the secrets of the world but have forgotten them or overcomplicated them.
In those times, the Master Work could be written simply on an emerald. But men began to reject simple things, and to write tracts, interpretations, and philosophical studies. They also began to feel that they knew a better way than others had.
Yet the Emerald Tablet is still alive today. Once the secrets of alchemy could be written on an emerald, but over time it has been overcomplicated by men who thought they knew better than others. Speaking of the eight century Arab alchemists, Goodrick-Clarke tells us that the Emerald Tablet was greatly revered by the Arabs as a source of ancient wisdom. The Emerald Tablet thus contains the notion derived from the Hermetic tradition, that the natural world is an image of the divine.
The truth is still accessible, The Alchemist teaches us, just not in books and mysterious symbols, but within ourselves. This notion is what I shall expand upon in the next section. Focus on the Self In Western Esotericism: A Concise History, Faivre and Rhone note three characteristics of seventeenth-century alchemy.
Like Jung, Coelho seems to be driven by that same interest and conviction in The Alchemist. Here, the alchemist is reading a book that contains a version of the myth of Narcissus. When the goddesses ask the lake why it is crying, the lake answers that it weeps for Narcissus. In fact, it never realized that Narcissus was beautiful.
Narcissus is generally perceived negatively as a character because of his egocentrism, while we feel compassion for poor Echo, whose unrequited love of Narcissus makes her so miserable that she eventually withers away and turns to stone leaving nothing but her echoing voice. Selfishness, in this version, becomes a direct source of something positive, not necessarily for the selfish character himself but for someone else.
This positive twist on the story seems to suggest that focus on the self is not a bad thing. On the contrary, it has the ability to inspire others. When interpreted this way, which I find quite valid, the prologue becomes something of a justification of narcissism. They spent so much time close to the fire that gradually they gave up the vanities of the world. They discovered that the purification of the metals had led to a purification of themselves.
This principle, which is repeated several times, removes all sense of external obligation. Here we see one of many alternatives presented to conventional religion where the focus is moved away from authority and on to the individual. The Alchemist is obviously sprinkled with New Age thought, which is why the novel is often found in the New Age philosophy sections in bookstores.
One of the main foci that transcend all branches of New Age religion, is the focus on the self. This notion of the self containing the truth of the world is evident throughout the novel but reaches its pinnacle in the end when, under threat of death, Santiago is forced by a tribal chief of the desert to transform himself into the wind.
He succeeds, and after doing so he thanks the alchemist for helping him: Here the alchemist expresses the exact same notion as found in New Age, that the truth lies within ourselves. Many New Agers do not only think that the truth is hidden within the self but also that God is hiding there. Or perhaps more accurately, they believe that the truth is within ourselves because God is part of the self.
This notion is evident in The Alchemist as well. And he saw that the Soul of God was his own soul. The New Age emphasis on the self and the Higher Self is not simply a result of sacralising anthropology. Self-authority is also linked to a particular epistemology of experience. Mediated truth, communicated by sacred texts, by the Church, by society cannot be trusted. In the story, Santiago represents the gnostic. It is important to note, that in my usage here, a gnostic simply refers to one who experiences gnosis, gnosis simply referring to spiritual enlightenment encountered through experience.
Contrasting Santiago, we once again have the Englishman, the diligent alchemy student.
Throughout the second half of the novel, he represents what we may call the academic approach to alchemy. The Indian spiritual teacher, Rajneesh, describes the contrast between realization through experience and mediated information in this one short, eloquent sentence: It is a direct path to a personal truth.
This is obviously appealing to postmodern society whose inhabitants no longer have a shared belief system but long to find their own place in and understanding of the world. It is to these people that The Alchemist resonates most effectively.
Furthermore, I believe it extends far wider in the postmodern population that to those fascinated by New Age philosophy.
The widespread appeal of The Alchemist provides ample indication of this. But Santiago does not follow the steps. At least not in the traditional sense. Indeed, when alchemy is first mentioned, almost halfway through the narrative, he proclaims: Meanwhile, we know that the Englishman has gone through all the proper stages, yet he feels that his studies have taken him as far as they could. This is why he has sought to establish a relationship with an alchemist, but despite his best efforts and years of study, the alchemists are unwilling to help him.
This conversation between Santiago and the alchemist states this preference quite palpably and also reveals the function of the alchemist: A while ago, I rode through the desert with a man [The Englishman] who had books on alchemy. Everything you need to know you have learned through your journey.
The Englishman has spent years acquiring knowledge but has only just begun to get to know things. In his introduction to Jung on Alchemy, Schwartz-Salant makes an observation about the alchemists that is extremely useful here: Certainly there were many alchemists who had immediate sense of the true mystery of their art. As mentioned before, the alchemical Master Work is intimately bound up with personal transformation in the novel, much like it is to Jung.
Alchemy is understood as an ennoblement of all things — not just turning lead into gold. And even though Santiago does not transform lead into gold, he does transform himself into the wind in the end, which is also described as a type of alchemy.
This feat could only be accomplished because he, as opposed to the Englishman who has just begun the process of transforming himself, has been undergoing an individuation process throughout the entire narrative. He sets up contexts in which Santiago can undergo a process of individuation and thereby transform into a purer state.
But what Young fails to recognize in his article, is the simultaneous quest for unity that lies in the search for self-realization. To illustrate this final point, this aforementioned passage from Jung is useful. Jung is not only referring to a wholeness of self here, but also wholeness in a wider sense.
Through knowledge of the self, the idea is also that we regain a shared knowledge of the world that has been lost. In this connection, the description of the buried treasure that Santiago finally finds is essential. The last part of the passage is interesting as it expresses how the buried treasure symbolizes something lost and now recovered.
Finally, I believe it is valid to argue that the overall message of the novel is that by attaining knowledge of ourselves, we can unlock something similar to what Jung believed to be the collective unconscious.
But it may suffice to describe the buried treasure as knowledge of the World Soul. After all, that is what Santiago understands alchemy to be in the end as he says: Thus, rather than leading to a separation of individuals, the focus on the self and personal experience ultimately results in a greater mutual understanding between people.
This, I believe, is crucial to our understanding of the success of the novel, which I doubt would have been as great if the focus on the self did not contain an ultimately unifying goal. This movement seeks to re-mystify life through a focus on personal spirituality. But there are clear similarities. But we have seen that The Alchemist certainly pushes many of the right postmodernist buttons.
Secondly, the story retains a clear focus on the self throughout the narrative. Even incorporating a positive view of Narcissus, usually the embodiment of self-interest in Western mythology, it tells us that it is through self-reflection and indeed self-absorption that we must find truth, not only of ourselves but of God.
Truth must be sought in experience which allows for an individuation of the self. Works Cited: Coelho, Paulo, and Alan Clarke. The Alchemist. San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, Drury, Nevill. The Dictionary of the Esoteric. Watkins, Eliade, Mircea. The Forge and the Crucible. New York: Faivre, Antoine and Rhone, Christine.
Western Esotericism: State U of New York, Goodrick-Clarke, Nicholas. The Western Esoteric Traditions: A Historical Introduction. Oxford UP, Goodyear, Dana. The New Yorker, 29 Apr. The New Age Movement: The Celebration of the Self and the Sacralization of Modernity. Blackwell, Heschel, Abraham Joshua, and Fritz A.
Between God and Man: Free Paperbacks, Capretto, Lisa. Jung, C. The Development of Personality. Pantheon, Collected Works of C. Jung, Vol. Memories, Dreams, Reflections. Vintage, Jung on Alchemy. Routledge, Lembert, Alexandra.
The Heritage of Hermes: Alchemy in Contemporary British Literature. Glienicke, Berlin: Galda Wilch Verlag, MacLaine, Shirley. Going Within.