What a beautiful book about seeking one’s “personal calling” in life; The Alchemist – A Story for the Ages. It is on my “Top 10” favorites book list. This book is also one of Will Smith‘s favorite books as mentioned in one of my earlier posts.
The ten best quotes from The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, (1993) in my opinion are:
Quotes cited from “The Alchemist” follow this format: (Character and Page Number)
1. It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting. ∼ Santiago (11)
Comment: To expand this idea even further, I believe that to live one’s life without having “a dream” or purpose or meaning is to have a purposeless or meaningless life… it’s that simple!
2. Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own. ∼ Santiago (16)
Comment: How universally true this statement is… especially when it comes to various family members! I must also confess, I am sometimes guilty of this trait myself…
3. …when each day is the same as the next, it’s because people fail to recognize the good things that happen in their lives every day that the sun rises. ∼ Santiago (27)
Comment: An insightful thought about why we should always live in the moment. Part of “living in the moment” requires a deep sense of gratitude in our hearts for what we have.
4. The secret of happiness is to see all the marvels of the world, and never to forget the drops of oil on the spoon. ∼ the wise man (32)
Comment: What this means to me, for example, is that a person may enjoy teaching because of what can be learned from those being taught through the interactions and relationships one experiences and develops during the educational process. However, never forget that the primary purpose is to teach the student(s) what they need and are required to learn.
5. When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it… ∼ the old man (Melchizedek) (40)
Comment: I believe in this idea, a belief that is discussed in-depth by Dr. Wayne Dyer of whom I have enjoyed reading for the past 15 years.
6. When someone makes a decision, he is really diving into a strong current that will carry him to places he had never dreamed of when he first made the decision. ∼ Santiago (68)
Comment: This truth applies to both good and bad decisions as I have so poignantly experienced first-hand in my life.
Live in the Present
7. Because I don’t live in either my past or my future. I’m interested only in the present. If you can always concentrate on the present, you’ll be a happy man. You’ll see that there is life in the desert, that there are stars in the heavens, and that tribesmen fight because they are part of the human race. Life will be a party for you, a grand festival because life is the moment we’re living right now. ∼ camel driver (85)
Comment: I have experienced that living in the present, enjoying each moment of my life, is more productive and beneficial to my well-being than dwelling on the past or always thinking about the future; which I have struggled with in the past. This state of being does not negate the need to plan and set goals or to reflect and learn from past experiences, but to dwell in the past or future for excessive lengths of time is self-defeating and non-productive.
Listen to Your Heart
8. You will never be able to escape from your heart. So it’s better to listen to what it has to say. That way, you’ll never have to fear an unanticipated blow. ∼ Paulo Coelho (129)
Comment: The trick here is not to let the mind, or schemes, get in the way of the heart. Then again, I wish there were times when I had let my mind and common sense get in the way.
9. Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams because every second of the search is a second’s encounter with God and with eternity. ∼ Paulo Coelho (130)
Comment: This is a hard concept to accept and put into practice; even when one knows that it is true.
Fear of Failure
10. There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure. ∼ Paulo Coelho (141)
Comment: How many times in my life have I failed to try something I wanted to do because of the fear of failure?
Images – Post image: “Tout” by tinou bao is licensed under CC BY 2.0.
Quotes – Coelho, P. (1993). The Alchemist. New York, New York: HarperCollins Publishers Inc.