The Prophet – On Religion
An old priest said: ‘Speak to us of Religion.'
And the Prophet replied:
Have I ever spoken to you of anything else?
Is not religion all deeds and all reflections,
And that which is neither one nor the other?
Isn’t it the wonder and surprise that ever springs in your soul,
Even while your hands are hewing a stone or attending to a loom?
Who can separate their faith from their actions,
Or their beliefs from their occupations?
Who can spread their hours before them and say:
‘This is for God and that for myself.
This is for my soul and that for my body?’
All your hours are wings that beat through space
From one part of yourself to the other,
From the Higher or God Self to your lower earthly self,
Those who wear their morality only as their best garment
When they go to church on Sunday,
Would be better off naked, so the Sun and the wind
Can tear and burn no holes into their skins.
And those who define their conduct purely by
The ethics of dogma and creed of one religion or another,
Imprison the songbird of their souls in a cage,
Unaware that the finest songs do not come from behind bars and wires.
If your worshipping is but a window
That one opens and shuts at will,
You will never get to know the house of the soul,
Whose windows are forever open.
Your daily life needs to become your temple and your religion.
Upon entering it each day take everything you are with you,
Be it a plough or a forge, a mallet or a lute.
Take all the things you have fashioned,
Either of necessity or for your delight.
In your dreams rise above yourself and your achievements,
And put your failures behind you as the lessons of the past.
Fly on the wings of the knowledge you now receive
Directly from the Great White Spirit and take everybody with you,
So that in adoration you fly higher than their hopes
And humbly join and comfort them in their moments of despair.
If you want to know your Creator, refuse to follow like a sheep
The things that were written a long time ago.
Most of it is likely to be outdated and in need of review.
The religion of the new age is one of the heart
That aims to help all souls, independent of colour or race,
To grow in wisdom and understanding
Of the true purpose and meaning of humankind’s earthly existence.
This religion is a faith that invites all of you
To experience life’s processes ever more deeply.
Through consciously participating in them,
You become ever more aware of the living God and Goddess
Within you and everything that shares your present existence.
Now you can observe for yourself God/Goddess being as much
Alive in you as in your children and everybody else.
When you gaze into space, especially at night,
Discover how even in the stars and the clouds,
The Great Father/Mother of all life embraces all its Creations
With the same loving care.
With every ray of sunshine and drop of rain
That touches the Earth, they seek to comfort,
Bless and heal each one of you and your whole world.
In every flower, leave and blade of grass they are smiling,
In the trees their arms and hands are waving to you,
While the wind whispers words of healing and peace
To those whose inner eyes and ears have opened
To the new religion of love.
From ‘The Prophet’ by Kahlil Gibran 1883-1931
Reinterpreted by Aquarius
* * *