The Book that Set the Soul of the World on Fire

150+ million copies sold and an entire planet inspired by a shepard boy’s personal legend.

source: flickr

Magical things happen in life. The moments - through books, people, music - when the magic finds the cracks in our ego’s armor, like a spark of lightning to the dry mundanity of life it kindles our soul, and in an instant we remember simultaneously how small we are, how powerful we are, and how playful life can be (especially when the magic comes wrapped in luck and coincidences.. because then you can’t help but believe the moment was meant specifically for you).

At 16 years old I was pushed permanetly onto my perfect life course by a book assigned to me in high school English. It made my passion clear to me and gave my life a purpose. As the author put it,

“…intuition is really a sudden immersion of the soul into the universal current of life, where the histories of all people are connected, and we are able to know everything, because it’s written there.”-Paulo Coelho

The words were what the The Alchemist was all about for me at 16; words explaining concepts about the universe, destiny, love, intuition, the power of positive thinking.. all things I had lived and knew to be true, but had never even paused to think about. Yet there they were: words that so simply and perfectly enlightened the reader of them to life’s most massive lessons, as learned by a shepard boy in the simplest of stories.

And for the past 12 years, I’ve lived my life not only with the knowledge that I could return to The Alchemist whenever I needed to borrow that shepard boy’s roadmap to guide my own journey, but also with a knowledge much more valuable: that this same book - the one thing that has enhanced my life more than any other - has done the same for 100+ million people all across Earth.

And knowing that all these people, from all different backgrounds, cultures, income levels.. all these people leading lives so seemingly unconnected to each other.. they all connect to these same ideas. And the reason that this is so inspiring is quite simple:

There was a language in the world that everyone understood… it was the language of enthusiasm, of things accomplished with love and purpose, and as part of a search for something believed in and desired. -Paulo Coelho

Because when people learn what Santiago the shepard boy learned- to follow your dreams, live your life with love, and to trust in the universe to guide you towards them, that’s how our world is going to change for the better.

At this point in my own journey, I cling to this universal connection to remind me of one thing in particular:

Writing has the power to change the world.

Because all the people who have read The Alchemist have spent the length of the book, at the very least, thinking about these powerful concepts; concepts that have the ability to raise the positive vibration of our planet. And for myself, it inspires me daily to write, should my writing do the same for at least a handful of people.

“No matter what he does, every person on earth plays a central role in the history of the world. And normally he doesn’t know it.” -Paulo Coelho

and a last one for good measure:

“When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.” -Paulo Coelho

Originally published at medium.com

Wonder

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