Coelho attended Jesuit schools and was raised by devout Catholic parents. He determined early on that he wanted to be a writer but was discouraged by his parents, who saw no future in that profession in Brazil. Coelho’s rebellious adolescence spurred his parents to commit him to a mental asylum three times, starting when he was 17.
“I have forgiven,” Coelho said. “It happens with love, all the time – when you have this love towards someone else, but you want this person to change, to be like you. And then love can be very destructive.”
Coelho eventually got out of institutional care and enrolled in law school, but dropped out to indulge in the “sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll” of hippie life. He was jailed three times for his political activism and subjected to torture in prison.
Source: Paulo Coelho
The Alchemist was written by Paulo Coelho. It was published in 1988.