“Keep me away from wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh and the greatness which does not bow before children.” ~ Kahlil Gibran
I cut my teeth on Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet. Even at a very young age there was a sense of truth in his words that resonated with my soul. All these years later, I feel the same way. The simple, yet profound words he used continues to reach thousands upon thousands of hearts and souls in a way all the complex gobble-dy gook of religious tombs and psychological manuals have never been able to do.
There is a reason for this. Truth is simple. Truth is understandable even to the simplest of minds. Truth stands the test of time. Truth bears its soul in the eyes of children. We must not allow ourselves to be fooled by a culture that throws a blanket of confusion over you us. To grow in wisdom we must throw it off.
Any culture consists of a myriad of traditions, customs, and beliefs that do not stand up to the test of time. We must live in the world, but we can choose to stand beside the culture often enough to learn to recognize its power to fool us, to lure us into a false sense of security or perhaps more often a false sense of insecurity.
Our media, for example, is peppered with word usage, tone, and a focus that is meant to startle us, to set us on high alert. It wants us to live in fear and to believe it holds the truth so that we will check back with them often for an update on whether or not we are still okay.
The marketplace wants us to believe that our health is at risk every minute of the day. Pharmaceutical companies want us to look for problems with our health so that we will think we need their help to remain healthy and buy their products. The insurance companies want us to be afraid of catastrophe so that we will buy insurance, “just in case”. The fashion industry wants us to believe that we could not possibly feel good about ourselves unless we’re wearing the latest fashion. The list of soul grabbing cultural entities that pull and tug at us every day is endless. One might wonder if we are really free, our freedom simply having been usurped in a different way.
Yet we do hold the power of choice. We can choose to step back, to seek a truth that stands outside of culture. We can choose to look into our hearts and souls to find our own personal truth and choose to live by that which we can be certain will stand the test of time.
Look into the eyes of a child
See the innocence, the purity
The unveiled love and trust that
Eagerly embraces only now
A single moment in time
Open, trusting, free.
This is the face of your soul.
In that quiet center of you
Where laughter, peace, and wisdom
Sing a harmonious song and lift you
Up upon the wings of truth so
You can fly.
©Dorothy Sander 2012