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The Mysteries Of Life

February 27, 2011

“His power came from some great reservoir of spiritual life else it could not have been so universal and so potent, but the majesty and beauty of the language with which he clothed it were all his own.”

~ Claude Bragdon

Khalil Gibran’s masterpiece “The Prophet” is the kind of book that enters your life and quickly works its way into your soul as the words on each page become a guideline for enlightened living. It changes the way you feel, think and experience life.

The book focuses on The Prophet, who has lived in a foreign city for twelve years and  is about to board a ship that will take him back home. He is stopped by a group of people, who interrogate him about the mysteries of life…

Each line in this book holds a morsel of wisdom that goes far beyond its depth. It’s the type of book that you can just open to any page and read a passage and then spend the remainder of the day pondering its meaning and what it implies to you.

Below are a few select passages that will hopefully motivate you to take a closer look at the mysteries within your own world.

On Love

If you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:
To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
To know the pain of too much tenderness.
To be wounded by your own understanding of love;
And to bleed willingly and joyfully.
To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
To rest at the noon hour and meditate love’s ecstasy;
To return home at eventide with gratitude;
And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips.


On Marriage

You shall be together when white wings of death scatter your days.
Ay, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness,
And let winds of the heavens dance between you.

On Children

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you, and yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.

On Work

Life is indeed darkness save when there is urge,
And all urge is blind save when there is knowledge,
And all knowledge is vain save when there is work,
And all work is empty save when there is love.

On Friendship

And in the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter and the sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.

On Death

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?
And what is to cease breathing, but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?
Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing. And when you have reached the mountain top, then shall you begin to climb. And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.

On Self-Knowledge

Your hearts know in silence the secrets of the days and the nights.
But your ears thirst for the sound of your heart’s knowledge.
You would know in words that which you have always known in thought.
You would touch with your fingers the naked body of your dreams.

On Pain

Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding.
Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.
And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily miracles of your life, your pain would not seem less wondrous than your joy;
And you would accept the seasons of your heart, even as you have always accepted the seasons that pass over your fields.
And you would watch with serenity through the winters of your grief.

On Pleasure

Pleasure is a freedom-song, But it is not freedom.
It is the blossoming of your desires,
But it is not their fruit.
It is a depth calling unto a height, But it is not the deep nor the high. It is the caged taking wing,
But it is not space encompassed.
Ay, in very truth, pleasure is a  freedom song.
And I fain would have you sing it with fullness of heart; yet I would not have you lose your hearts in the singing.

On Reason and Passion

Your reason and your passion are the rudder and the sails of your seafaring soul.
If either your sails or our rudder be broken, you can but toss and drift, or else be held at a standstill in mid-seas.
For reason, ruling alone, is a force confining; and passion, unattended, is a flame that burns to its own destruction.
Therefore let your soul exalt your reason to the height of passion; that it may sing;
And let it direct your passion with reason, that your passion may live through its own daily resurrection, and like the phoenix rise above its own ashes.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. goodmorningdog permalink
    February 27, 2011 19:49

    I read this so long ago and am gladly reminded of the poetic power that this man had at his command.
    I just Googled him..Khalil Gibran..to discover that he is the 3rd best selling poet of all time after Shakespeare and Lao Tzu. There is hope for humanity after all!

    • February 27, 2011 20:03

      Hi Warwick,

      Thanks for stopping by:) This book goes from generation to generation never losing its meaning.
      An inspiration for us all.

      ~J

  2. February 28, 2011 17:04

    Hi Jessika, love this:

    “To know the pain of too much tenderness.
    To be wounded by your own understanding of love;
    And to bleed willingly and joyfully.”

    Thanks so much for your retweet today. I have enjoyed your blog. I have not read “the Prophet,” but think I will add it to my ‘must read’ list. Have a wonderful day!

    • February 28, 2011 21:01

      Thanks for stopping by Bryan:)

      I would definitely recommend adding it to your list, you won’t be disappointed. Really motivational.

      ~J

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