Thesis: In Paulo Coelho's, The Alchemist, Santiago is influenced and learns by his love for others, the world around him and the forms of teachers that appear to him.
Needed Information: Just like in The Alchemist, these influences and teachers can be seen in Homer's The Odyssey, J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and Julie Kibler's Calling Me Home.
Detail #1: In The Alchemist while talking to the old king, Santiago learns that teachers can appear in different forms to help people on their way to their Personal Legend. The old king says, "I always appear in one form or another. Sometimes I appear in the form of a good idea. At other times, at a crucial moment, I make it easier for things to happen " (Coelho 26).
Commentary: Santiago learns in this conversation that their will be things to teach him and help him along his way towards his Personal Legend. He also learns that those teachers don't have to be people, they can be simple things like a rock, a falcon or the desert sands.
Detail #2: Similarly in Homer's The Odyssey, an epic poem, the goddess Athene appears in different forms to help their characters on the journeys. The text says, “In her hand she held the spear of bronze; and she was in the likeness of a stranger, Mentes, the leader of the Taphians. There she found the proud suitors ” (Homer 16).
Commentary: Athena appears in the likeness of a stranger, so that she can lead Telemachus away from the suitors and towards other teachers in his journey.
Commentary: The library is the main source of Hermione's knowledge. Everything she learns comes from the books she reads. Unlike Harry Potter, who learns from the world around him.
Detail #4: Similarly in The Alchemist it says, "The boy went back to contemplating the silence of the desert, and the sand raised by the animals. 'Everyone has his or her own way of learning things'" (Paulho 86).
Commentary: In The Alchemist, the boy learned more from the desert and found it hard to learn from books. However, the Englishman became irritable from trying to learn from the desert and could not stand to be without his books.
Detail #5: Finally in Kibler's Calling Me Home it says, “The heart is a demanding tenant; it often makes a strong argument against common sense”
Commentary: In the part of the text it explains that sometimes even though the logical decision is clear and right in front of someone the love for others can make them choose something or someone else.
Detail #6: A similar thing happens in The Alchemist, the text says, "' That's why I want you to continue toward your goal...That's the way it will be because of our love for each other'" (Paulho 100).
Commentary: In this part of the book the boy's love for a girl almost lead him to give up on his Personal Legend. However in the end the girl was influenced by her heart and her love to support the boy on his journey and in return she would wait for him to come back to her.
Conclusion: Clearly in all four of these texts the characters are taught and influenced by teachers, love, books and the world around them. All of these things influenced their decision making during their journey.