The Book That Left An Indelible Impact On My Life

Guest Post By Shivani Pandey

A year ago I chanced upon the magnum opus of my favorite author Paulo Coelho. Certainly, some accidents are blessings in disguise. It was a period of emotional turmoil both in my personal life and my educational sphere. I thought a novel would be a good refreshment but little did I know that this would have an effect on my mind and soul that would last for a lifetime. 

The novel speaks about a lad who despite being a scholar wishes to travel the world. He embarks upon a journey as a shepherd unaware of the fact that this would be a life-altering one. He gathers the courage to follow a vague dream which often people like me disregard. He interprets the dream as the language of God- the way God communicates with his creations. He believes that to seek one's destiny, one needs to hear the signals that He sends. I personally have started paying heed to the omens that the universe sends- good or bad- and things have changed for the better. 

The scholar turned shepherd encounters various problems on the path towards his destiny. The worst one being trusting a thief and giving away all his savings but this somewhere has a great impact on his journey from being nothing to achieving everything. This incident taught me that it has to get to the worst before the best can arrive. And when going gets tough, look closely, the creator is trying to teach you something. Look closely- all your solutions are just in your vicinity. 

From there on begins the real journey of being an alchemist, on understanding the meaning of alchemy- penetrating to the soul of the world and discovering the treasure that has been reserved for him and only him. I learned my lesson that whoever you are, whatever you do; when you really want something it's because a desire has originated in the soul of the universe to achieve. It is then your mission on the face of the earth to achieve everything that you have ever dreamt of.

The ultimate lesson that this book taught me was if you really want it the universe will conspire for you to have it. Omens are already there in your surroundings- you just need to listen. What's meant to be will always find its way. The shepherd was to be the owner of the treasure or else he wouldn’t have met the alchemist. He wouldn’t have learned the ways of life; wouldn’t have learned the art of converting himself into the wind. Don’t give up just before the dawn of accomplishment. The brightest sun shines after the darkest of night. 

The most important lesson learned after which most of the people have turned Ghalib and Shayars is the lesson of love. Mr. Coelho in a very lucid language defines love- love never keeps away a man from pursuing his destiny. If he abandons that pursuit it's only because that wasn’t true love- the love that speaks the laws of the world. True love is the one that motivates you to achieve your goals, live your dreams along with your loved ones. The greatest and the most important lesson ever learned is that you are born with a purpose on this face of the earth. With a spoon full of oil you are allowed to gaze upon the wonders of life without letting the oil spill. And happily-ever-afters do exist.



  1. Huh. I haven't read this book before. Added it to my wishlist though. Sounds interesting!

  2. I have tried reading Paulo Coelho many times but never seemed to like his works :(

  3. It is book which gives meaning to our life. prayers

  4. Following the dream- This belief is a marvellous one, a support for anyone embarking on an important project. But is it a hope based on nothing? If you think about the energy you put into something once you are committed to it, probably not. The ‘universe conspiring’ to give you what you want is, more precisely, a reflection of your determination to make something happen.
    The Alchemist does not get away from the fact that dreams have a price but, as Coelho has said in interviews, not living your dreams also has a price. For the same money, he said, you can either buy a horrible jacket that does not fit or one that suits you and looks right. It is better to have problems that make sense because they are part of what you are trying to achieve. Thank you for your post and making it a part of my blog's birthday celebration. Best wishes.

  5. Paulo Coelho's books and quotes are inspirational and this story is one too. My takeaway from this post is that whatever you want, the universe conspires you to get it.

  6. Haha , The epic dialogue " the universe will conspire for you to have it." .. An excellent take on life #myfriendalexa #fotwreads

  7. This is one of the must read book for everyone, and there is something for everybody. Learning the lessons of life. The very idea of venturing into an adventurous journey and believing on one's dream, connecting with the universe and learning the language that the universe understand. Alchemist, the meaning of alchemy and how one can get the gold after extracting the impurities from the pure form of metal...the heat and the process for purification.

    Each one of us has a purpose only we don't know that and many times it takes years to just discover that purpose and everything falls in place. But it needs the patient and perseverance to get there...the language in the book is so simple and there is such a beautiful flow that one gets magnetically engrossed in the magic of the book.

  8. Awesome book... lessons learnt are a many...The book helps you believe in your current situation and that you are there for a reason


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Queeristan by Parmesh Sahani

  Queeristan (Amazon Link) Thanks to Audible Free Trial I listened to this amazing non-fiction on LGBTQ inclusion in Indian workplaces. Author Parmesh Sahani identifies as gay Indian, working closely with Godrej higher management and employees for years to create an inclusive workplace, both legally and in spirit. This book is a result of those years of experience, research, collaboration with individuals from difference spectrum of the society and organizations who has successfully transitioned into a queer friendly one.   Indian history is inclusive. From the Khajuraho temple architectures, to Konark to the Rig Veda, there is existing proofs even 2000 years ago of Indian inclusiveness of queer. It’s the draconian British law that criminalised it, which was scraped in 2009, came into effect once again following a sad judgement in 2013 and eventually was scraped off for good in 2018. I am in awe of the lawyers who fought this legal battle- colleagues and partners – Arundhati Katju

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