Choosing Your Own Path: The Alchemist by: Ridge Smith

Thesis: In the spiritual novel The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho the importance of making your own decisions and choosing your own path, staying loyal, and the fact that there is more going on then you can see are very important topics. These topic are also found in other media outlets like movies, books, and paintings.

Detail #1: In The Alchemist, Santiago tells the Old King about how his parents wanted him to be a priest but instead he became a shepherd because he wanted to travel. "'They wanted me to be a priest, but I decided to become a shepherd' 'Much better,' said the old man. 'Because you really like to travel'" (Coelho 21).

Comment #1: In Captain America: Civil War, by Marvel, Captain America is asked to sign a contract that only allows the Avengers to be dispatched when a majority of 117 countries agree to it. Captain America chooses not to sign the contract like some of the other Avengers have because he believes the Avengers shouldn't be owned by anyone. He followed his beliefs and made his own choices and it worked out for him in the end.

Detail #2: The importance of loyalty is found in The Alchemist at the end of the book when Santiago says, "I'm coming Fatima,". This shows loyalty because, even after his whole journey Santiago still is thinking about Fatima.

Comment #2: In The Odyssey, by Homer, Odysseus goes on a long journey and is away from his wife and son for many years. Near the end of the book it shows Odysseus' loyalty when after this journey and having been with other women along the way he is still in love with his wife.

Detail #3: Santiago shows us that there is more going on than he knows in The Alchemist when he sees a vision while watching some hawks fly. "Suddenly, one of the hawks made a flashing dive through the sky, attacking the other. As it did so, a sudden, fleeting image came to the boy: an army, with its swords at the ready riding into the oasis."

Comment #3: The idea of more going on than one can see is also found in the painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder entitled The Fall Of Icarus. In the painting Icarus is falling into the ocean from the sky. Only one person however, see this event happen. So many people didn't see this amazing event occur which shows that there is always more going on than one thinks.

Conclusion: Now that I have read The Alchemist I can see that it is important to make my own decisions, stay loyal, and try to see the bigger picture.

Created By
Ridge Smith

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