Theme Of Fear In The Alchemist

850 Words 4 Pages
One’s true potential is on the other side of fear. As this anonymous quote elucidates, fear acts as a hindrance that essentially traps us in our comfort zone, limits our experiences, and holds us back from achieving our potential. In Paulo Coelho’s novel The Alchemist, the protagonist, Santiago, demonstrates his fears as obstacles that divert himself from attaining his Personal Legend, and therefore he must overcome them.

Throughout the book, Santiago displays common fears which hinder him from the tasks he has yet to accomplish. One of these fears is Santiago’s immense terror of failure. During his travels with the Alchemist, Santiago yearns to turn himself into the wind; however, he hesitates in even trying to do so, saying “‘But I have
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He overcomes his fear of failure when he thinks about Fatima, the woman he loves. Initially unprepared to turn himself into the wind, he tries asking for help from the desert: “‘Somewhere you are holding the person I love,’ the boy said. ‘So I want to return to her, and I need your help so that I can turn myself into the wind’” (144). Love is what overcomes his fear. His desire to return to Fatima is what drives him to succeed. He wants to be “able to reach every corner of the world, cross the seas, blow away the sands that cover [his] treasure, and carry the voice of the woman [he] love[s]” (146). However, the desert was not able to help him, and so he expresses his love for Fatima to the wind. He says “‘When you are loved, you can do anything in creation. When you are loved, there’s no need at all to understand what’s happening because everything happens within you, and even men can turn themselves into the wind. As long as the wind helps, of course’” (147). Santiago believes that love is what makes you do the impossible, and it is what ultimately drives him to be able to turn himself into the wind. Additionally, he overcomes his fear of losing Fatima when the Alchemist advised that Fatima will eventually be “unhappy because it was she who interrupted [his] quest” (119). The Alchemist …show more content…
However, his fear has become his best teacher. Fear enables him to understand what his comfort zone is and clarifies what experiences he has yet to explore. Fear makes him understand what he values and, thus, what he is afraid to

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