The Guest House

Painting by Emma Connolly of Whirling Dirvishes with Hagia Sophia in background

Painting by Emma Connolly of Whirling Dervishes with Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, Turkey in the background.

Here is one of my favorite poems, The Guest House, by the Sufi mystic Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī also known as Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī or more simply as Rumi.

The Guest House

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

– Rumi

  1 comment for “The Guest House

  1. Blake
    January 1, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    What a perfect poem for entering the new year! Thanks for posting and thanks to Emma for forwarding.

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