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The Ancient of Days

Oklahoma City Study Center

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Oklahoma City Study Center
5600 122 St., Oklahoma City, OK 73142
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Is the book The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho merely a story of chasing after your dreams or is it about self discovery and improvement?
Date: 4/11/2020 10:00:00 AM
Topic of Study: Literature
Presenter: Bro. Diego Segatore 3*
Synopsis: The book The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho is about a lonely Shepard named Santiago who, after dreaming of the pyramids of Egypt,  goes to a gypsy who tells him to find his personal treasure/dream.  This is further encouraged by an old man claiming to be a king.  He sells his flock, and with the money he sets out on an adventure that starts by crossing to Mediterranean and losing all of his money in Morocco.  This does not dissuade him and he keeps on following his personal treasure.  On the way he is met with not just monetary set-backs, he also falls in love with a woman and is tempted to not continue with his journey.  Ultimately he keeps on going and meets an alchemist who reveals to him what the true treasure in life is.  When Santiago asks the Alchemist why others haven't been able to turn base metals into gold the alchemist states "They were only looking for Gold.", this sentence sums up the conclusion of the book that the treasure Santiago finds is nothing like what he expected at the beginning of his journey.

"A human being is a part of a whole, called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest ... a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."
Albert Einstien
Personal Writings

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