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The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

Everyone is always looking for a way to relieve stress. Doctors tell us to keep stress out of our lives and as we all know this is easier said than done. “ Stress kills” is drummed into us which, of course, causes us more stress.

There are a number of ways to reduce stress such as changing your diet, starting to exercise, doing yoga, meditating, counting to 10 etc.

It is a widely known fact that many cancers are, indeed, caused by stress. I maintain, however, that if you are alive and part of a family you will have stress in your life no matter what you do.

When I heard that there was a little book called ‘The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho which could get stress out of your life on a more permanent level I was very interested in reading it. The Alchemist was first published in 1988 in Portuguese by it’s Brazilian-born author and I further found out that this book has been translated in 56 languages by 2012 which also gave me confidence in it.

30 million copies have been sold and it is the best- selling book in history winning the Guinness World’s Record for the most translated book by a living author.

As you know here in Ajijic, Lake Chapala it is not always easy to lay your hands on a particular book and sometimes we are not patient enough to wait for someone to bring it down to us. As I do not have a Kindle I sent a message to my son in Toronto and had the book on my computer the very same day.

I did try to download it myself but could not seem to make that happen and even though they touted a free download I could not figure out how to make that happen.

This book is only 97 pages long and is a very easy relaxing read. It is a page turner too and not without excitement as to what will happen next. It is the story of a young shepherd from Andalusia, Santiago, who is told he will find his fortune at the Pyramids of Egypt. He became a shepherd because he loved to travel and did not wish to become the priest his family wanted him to be.

He sets out on a very interesting journey and learns many things along the way from his sheep, a king, a gypsy and, of course, The Alchemist he meets in the Sahara desert.

Evidently after one reads this book one experiences an epiphany of sorts when everything about you seems to make more sense and worry and stress seems to fall from ones shoulders. Life becomes easier and less arduous and more peaceful.

Everyone, of course, is different, but, for me, anything that even might reduce stress is certainly worth a try.

Happy Reading!

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