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The Alchemist: Personal Legend

Seminar
by

Scott Forler

on 6 June 2011

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Transcript of The Alchemist: Personal Legend

Paulo Coelho: born in Brazil in 1947
As a teenager, he tried to convince his parents that he wanted to become an author
As writing was not seen as a traditional career by his parents, they committed him to a mental institution at the age of 17, thinking there was something wrong with him
Left his lucrative career as a songwriter because "I was working, I had a person who I loved, I had money, but I was not fulfilling my dream. My dream was, and still is, to be a writer" - Coelho
Pursued writing career as his Personal Legend and published many award winning books including The Alchemist which was the theme he identified in his own life What is a Personal Legend? Plot Summary Definition A personal legend is the path we decide to take that fills our heart with enthusiasm. It is the path of our dreams. Author The Alchemist
by: Paulo Coelho Santiago Goal of the Presentation To identify the importance of pursuing goals in order to achieve fulfillment in life
Recognizing personal legends in the literature specifically The Alchemist as well as real life Santiago the main character has a recurrent dream where a child tells him to find his treasure
This shepherd boy travels from Spain to Egypt in search of this treasure
He encounters significant and unusual people to contribute to his quest including a woman he falls in love with and an Alchemist
He faces fears and overcomes obstacles until he arrives at his destination
After such a long journey across the desert, he realizes the treasure he was seeking was in his own backyard
He learns the importance of finding his Personal Legend from the Alchemist because Alchemists practice transforming metals by removing impurities while human beings obtain fulfillment by removing their impurities A young shepherd boy, the protagonist in the novel determined to find treasure and curious to find out about the world
Sets off to fulfill his Personal Legend to pursue his dream of accomplishing his greatest desire
While pursuing his dream, he understands the soul of the world exists and he starts to pay more attention to everything around him
The Alchemist ultimately teaches him that he has the ability to transform his world once he understands it and removes impurities and doubt Why is it Important to have a Personal Legend? To improve the quality of your life
Provide a feeling of fulfillment
To give purpose to what you do everyday
Happiness
In literature, its a good basis for a story Notable PL's Terry fox A Canadian humanitarian athlete
Cancer patient
Personal Legend: To raise awareness about Cancer and raise money for research
Over $500 million raised in his name
Overcame adversity to fulfill his Personal Legend
Established the "Marathon of Hope" because it was the most important thing in his life Martin Luther King Jr. Prominent leader in the African American Civil Rights movement
He used a non-violent approach to promote civil rights
Personal Legend: To increase awareness of the need for racial equality
This was the primary goal in his life and he died in his attempts to promote equality Although these are high profile, media enhanced, examples of personal legends, in our own lives our personal legends can be simplistic and are very individual Class Involvement Stone As a Symbol Santiago received two stones from the King of Salem who gave him some advice at the beginning of his journey
The stones were named Urim and Thummim
These stones helped to guide him on his journey by keeping him focused
This stone that you have received is your reminder to keep focused on your PL Questions 1. Consider a character that you see in the media and try to define their personal legend (ex. Superman, Spider-Man, Nelson Mandela)

2. At what stage of your life do you think people start to consider their personal legends? Explain why.

3. Can your Personal Legend change over your life time? Explain your reasoning.

4. How does adversity affect your ultimate Personal Legend? Explain using examples. Conclusion Today we have studied Personal Legends in the literature of The Alchemist
We've gained an understanding of Personal Legends to be goals in life that make you happy
The ability to fulfill your dreams rests within yourself when you listen to your heart and challenge yourself to pursue what is important to you
On that note, would anyone like to share their own Personal Legend? Thank You
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