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This Being Human

Rumi and his poetry speak across the centuries and across culture. When we awake in the morning, we enter the world along with our emotions. We serve them as a host and they live within us as if our body were a guest house.

When we are mindful of how we experience emotions, we learn they unexpectedly move, replaced by another we attend to, as well. In this way, we invite them in and entertain them as grateful hosts, even when they catch us off guard. We receive each emotion honorably as we experience it and attend to it each moment as fully as humanly possible.

When we understand that emotions come and go and serve as guides in living, being human is a gift that we receive with gratitude and joy. We greet them at the door with a hearty laugh and question what meaning they bring to us in that moment.

This being human is like a quest house.

Every morning, a new arrival,

A joy, a depression, meanness . . .

Some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all,

Even if they are 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.

 

About ivonprefontaine

I am a retired educator who recently completed a PhD at Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA. My dissertation topic and research was how teachers experience becoming who they are as teachers, as human subjects. For me, teaching is a calling and vocation that allows me to express who I am as a person. Currently, I am waiting and listening to what will call me. We have begun a small consulting and leadership firm called Rocky River Leadership & Consulting Ltd.

15 responses »

  1. Oh my goodness, I posted this poem by Rumi earlier today as well . . . hmm we are being called in the same direction. This poem just calls to my soul so very much. Thank you for sharing.

    Reply
  2. I’ve loved this poem, as I do several other quotes and poems by Rumi. It seems to me that in the last several years, he’s become better know in the west. Ivon, do you notice that too, or is it because I’ve been living under a rock?

    Reply
  3. Dr. Wayne Dyer was a big fan of Rumi and introduced me to him. Must say that even though all of these feelings appear in my life, I open the door wide to let in joy and happiness and they seem to chase away the negative spirits.

    Reply
  4. I know this poem. And it’s a good reminder. Emotions can be tricky to navigate, especially before we recognize how automatic they can be. Mindfulness, as you so astutely point out, is key. But once we are able to do this? To remain with and accept these emotions with kindness and compassion? We are truly free! Great post, Ivon. Mahalo nui.

    Reply

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