THE GUEST HOUSE

A poem by the Sufi Master, 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 cleaning you out
For some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice meet them all at the door
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes. because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.


If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.

–Emily Dickinson

8 Replies to “THE GUEST HOUSE”

  1. All the yes. It reminds of the Rilke poem, “Allow it all to happen, beauty and terror. Just keep going. No feeling is final.”

    1. HEATHER KING says: Reply

      Oh that’s good: “No feeling is final.” I’ve had a biography of Rilke, waiting to be read, for a while…Thank you, Gombojav Family!

  2. Thank you so much for this today. It’s exactly what I needed to read.

    1. HEATHER KING says: Reply

      Thanks, Patti–ah, the ongoing contradictions of the Cross!

  3. Robin A Hafey says: Reply

    I practice Crntering Prayer each morning …and
    The Guest House is used to help practice The Welcoming Prayer all thru the day…recognizing that God is there with us thru everything that happens during the day. Beautiful!

    1. HEATHER KING says: Reply

      Thank you, Robin..may welcoming prayer beat in our hearts all day and all night…

  4. Teresa Kleber says: Reply

    I am so late reading this but it is what I need now. Right this minute now. Thank you Heather and thank you, Rumi

    1. HEATHER KING says: Reply

      Blessed Lent, dear Teresa, with prayers.

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