A giant from another dark skinned race, a man from Lebanon, Kahlil Gibran, authored several books of prose like Sand and Foam, and A Tear And a Smile, The Broken Wings, among others.
The one he is most noted for is entitled The Prophet, and the message it carries transcends the boundaries of race and culture. I’m not sure but I think it can found in it’s entirety on the net.
The Prophet is divided into chapters that deal with the aspects of life like work, children, and justice as an example. Some may be dismissive based upon the word prose but this is not your standard roses are red violets are blue, what is contained within the pages is a lyrical, easily understood, and deeply profound essay about the elements of humankind-the words have an undeniable and universal application.
I am not a fan of poetry in general but I have a well worn, earmarked copy of this book The Prophet and a sense that there is a sacredness about it. I would encourage any to read it.
“Work is love made visible. And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms of those who work with joy. “
There has been enough of this sitting at the temple of subsidies, there is a great purpose and honor that comes with work and the ability to provide by ones own efforts.
I know job opportunities are scarce but work can also be defined by helping others or tilling and planting a small personal garden, better yet a communal one where all share in the labor and the rewards. Communal efforts to clean up an area will promote not only strong bonds but instill a sense of pride and maybe lighten the load a little- it will have a direct impact on children and provide an example for them that even in darkness a candle can be lit , and it has always been the way and the responsibility of the people to do so.
“Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need.”
This has always been the great strength of the nations-to give and to put others first.
There is no more meaningful effort than personal sacrifice-it is the basis of the sun dance and the willingness of every warrior who ever rode forth in defense of his people.
Bullets, arrows, or a stick to dig in the ground to plant in the hopes of feeding a child-I see little difference in the motivation. “You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”
“You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. They came through you but not from you and though they are with you yet they belong not to you.”
This too is a thing the nations have always known-that children are not property but a sacred trust and duty. A duty paramount above all others. I have heard an axiom that you will know a man by the manner in which he treats his dog or his horse.
There is a truth in that but the greater truth will be seen in the manner he treats his children and the mother of those children.
Likewise a woman as they are not exempt from this responsibility. We are this bow that draws the string that sends the child forth and our aim must be purposeful and with good intent.
Any fool can produce children, but to be a father and a mother is a different matter, and if one is not up to it better to be a eunuch than to condemn an innocent to a half life.
“Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh and the greatness which does not bow before children.”
“The most pitiful among men is he who turns his dreams into silver and gold.”
People of the nations are neither fools nor ignorant – history that stretches back to the beginning of time attests to that as do rich and vibrant culture and traditions.
We have not gone Where White Men Fear to Tread-they have gone every where, even to the moon-the difference is we have not left a path of destruction in our wake.
There should be a sense of pride and comfort in this-we seek balance, harmony, and coexistence in those places we live-not dominance and the raping and pillaging of the land or of our brother.
Anyone can be fooled and there is no shame in being human in that aspect – the shame comes in being tricked and embracing it.
This biblical story of Judas who sells himself and his brothers for silver has not been an isolated incident, there have always been ones such as these, a Judas goat to lead their people in the wrong direction, and it is an eternal truth they are the ones who profit. You have a mind and a voice- use them.
You would claim the strength and wisdom of heritage-then let it be so. Broken wings can be healed.