What is meant by the statement, "everything is related to everything else"?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Coelho's idea of everything being related to everything else helps to establish the magical realism that is intrinsic to the work's effectiveness.  In order for magical realism to be accepted and for it to be meaningful in the work, everything has to have meaning.  Events are not isolated and random.  They are connected and have to be seen in a larger context.  Consider Melchizedek's words to Santiago on this point:  "....there is a force that wants you to realize your Personal Legend…[but] in order to find the treasure you will have to follow the omens.”   In this statement, interrelationship between elements of reality is critical.  The "omens" are not random.  They are connected and related to one another, feeding into the realization of the path and Personal Legends.  Santiago has to recognize that there is an interrelated quality to being in the world.  Butterflies, hawks, and beetles are all connected to something larger.  For Santiago, the crucible he must face is accepting that everything is related to everything else and that there is meaning to all that is in the world.  The forces that seek to tell Santiago that he cannot embrace the pursuit of his Personal Legend and that there is no meaning to events are what he has to face down and defeat in order for him to navigate successfully between his "flock" and his "treasure."

The presence of magical realism makes consciousness and qualities interrelated.  This helps to compel Santiago and the reader to accept that there might be something larger beyond us, of which we are an integral part.  There is meaning everywhere in the world because of the beauty it features in being interconnected to everything else.  This becomes one of the meanings of the idea that "everything is related to everything else."

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The Alchemist

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