Kahlil Gibran

Kahlil Gibran

Kahlil Gibran (January 6, 1883 – April 10, 1931) was a Lebanese-American artist, poet, and writer of the New York Pen League. Gibran is regarded as a literary and political rebel. His romantic style was at the heart of a renaissance in modern Arabic literature, especially prose poetry, breaking away from the classical school. 

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To be able to look back upon ones life in satisfaction is to live twice.

If you love somebody let them go, for if they return they were always yours. And if they don't, they never were.

Life without love is like a tree without blossoms or fruit.

The timeless in you is aware of life's timelessness. And knows that yesterday is but today's memory and tomorrow is today's dream.

Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls, the most massive characters are seared with scars.

In battling evil, excess is good; for he who is moderate in announcing the truth is presenting half-truth. He conceals the other half out of fear of the people’s wrath.

Between what is said and not meant, and what is meant and not said, most of love is lost.

Ever has it been that love knows not its own depth until the hour of separation.

In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter and sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.

You talk when you cease to be at peace with your thoughts.

I love you when you bow in your mosque, kneel in your temple, pray in your church. For you and I are sons of one religion, and it is the spirit.

Every man loves two women; the one is the creation of his imagination and the other is not yet born.

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.

Trust in dreams for in them is hidden the gate to eternity.

Tenderness and kindness are not signs of weakness and despair, but manifestations of strength and resolution.

One day you will ask me which is more important? My life or yours? I will say mine and you will walk away not knowing that you are my life.

Love gives naught but itself and takes naught but from itself. Love possesses not, nor would it be possessed: For love is sufficient unto love.

The appearance of things changes according to the emotions; and thus we see magic and beauty in them, while the magic and beauty are really in ourselves.

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun? And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.

For thought is a bird of space, that in a cage of words may indeed unfold its wings but cannot fly.

Many of us spend our whole lives running from feeling with the mistaken belief that you can not bear the pain. But you have already borne the pain. What you have not done is feel all you are beyond that pain.

The person you consider ignorant and insignificant is the one who came from God that he might learn bliss from grief and knowledge from gloom.

It takes a minute to have a crush on someone, an hour to like someone, and a day to love someone... but it takes a lifetime to forget someone.

Life without liberty is like a body without spirit.

For what is evil but good tortured by its own hunger and thirst?

We are all like the bright moon, we still have our darker side.

We are all prisoners, but some of us are in cells with windows and some without.

I have found both freedom and safety in my madness; the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us.

Much of your pain is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self.

What is this world that is hastening me toward I know not what, viewing me with contempt?

Wisdom ceases to be wisdom when it becomes too proud to weep, too grave to laugh and too selfish to seek other than itself.

Your daily life is your temple and your religion. When you enter into it take with you your all.

Love is trembling happiness.

Knowledge cultivates your seeds and does not sow in your seeds.

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.

What difference is there between us, save a restless dream that follows my soul, but fears to come near you?

Yesterday is but today's memory and tomorrow is today's dream.

There are those who give with joy, and that joy is their reward.

But let there be spaces in your togetherness and let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another, but make not a bond of love: let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.

Exaggeration is truth that has lost its temper.

Perplexity is the beginning of knowledge.

If my survival caused another to perish, then death would be sweeter and more beloved.

Where is the justice of political power if it executes the murderer and jails the plunderer, and then itself marches upon neighboring lands, killing thousands and pillaging the very hills?

You pray in your distress and in your need, would that you might also pray in the fullness of your joy and in your days of abundance.

And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.

The most pitiful among men is he who turns his dreams into silver and gold.

March on. Do not tarry. To go forward is to move toward perfection. March on and fear not the thorns or the sharp stones on life's path.

We choose our joys and sorrows long before we experience them.

All that spirits desire spirits attain.

Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing toward what will be.

Coming generations will learn equality from poverty and love from woes.

I existed from all eternity and behold, I am here, and I shall exist till the end of time, for my being has no end.

When you work, you are a flute through whose heart the whispering of the hours turns to music. Which of you would be a reed, dumb and silent, when all else sings together in unison?

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.

The obvious is that which is never seen until someone expresses it simply.

Sadness is but a wall between two gardens.

Friendship is always a sweet responsibility, never an opportunity.

Of life's two chief prizes beauty and truth I found the first in a loving heart, and the second in a laborer's hand.

A little knowledge that acts is worth infinitely more than much knowledge that is idle.

I wash my hands of those who imagine chattering to be knowledge, silence to be ignorance and affection to be art.

Generosity is giving more than you can and pride is taking less than you need.

The eye of a human being is a microscope which makes the world seem bigger than it really is.

Poetry is a deal of joy and pain and wonder, with a dash of the dictionary.

All our words are but crumbs that fall down from the feast of the mind.

Your friend is your needs answered.

Let there be no purpose in friendship, save the deepening of the spirit.

Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding.

When we turn to one another for counsel, we reduce the number of our enemies.

Love one another but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.

If the grandfather of the grandfather of Jesus had known what was hidden within him, he would have stood humble and awe-struck before his soul.

Many a doctrine is like a window pane. We see truth through it but it divides us from truth.

When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow, that is giving you joy. When you are sorrowful, look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.

Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror. But you are eternity and you are the mirror.

I have learned silence from the talkative, toleration from the intolerant and kindness from the unkind, yet strange I am ungrateful to those teachers.

The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom, but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind.

Love and doubt have never been on speaking terms.

If the other person injures you, you may forget the injury, but if you injure him you will always remember.

Safeguarding the rights of others is the most noble and beautiful end of a human being.

Advance and never halt for advancing is perfection. Advance and do not fear the thorns in the path for they draw only corrupt blood.

Knowledge of the self is the mother of all knowledge. So it is incumbent on me to know my self, to know it completely, to know its minutiae, its characteristics, its subtleties and its very atoms.

A friend who is far away is sometimes much nearer than one who is at hand. Is not the mountain far more awe-inspiring and more clearly visible to one passing through the valley, than to those who inhabit the mountain?

Doubt is a pain too lonely to know that faith is his twin brother.

Your living is determined not so much by what life brings to you, as by the attitude you bring to life, not so much by what happens to you, as by the way your mind looks at what happens.

If you reveal your secrets to the wind you should not blame the wind for revealing them to the trees.

Generosity is not giving me that which I need more than you do, but it is giving me that which you need more than I do.

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.

I prefer to be a dreamer among the humblest with visions to be realized, than lord among those without dreams and desires.

The optimist sees the rose and not its thorns; the pessimist stares at the thorns, oblivious of the rose.

The lights of stars that were extinguished ages ago still reaches us. So it is with great men who died centuries ago, but still reach us with the radiations of their personalities.

The deeper sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.

It is well to give when asked but it is better to give unasked, through understanding.

If indeed you must be candid, be candid beautifully.

God made Truth with many doors to welcome every believer who knocks on them.

In one drop of water are found all the secrets of all the oceans; in one aspect of You are found all the aspects of existence.

They deem me mad because I will not sell my days for gold; and I deem them mad because they think my days have a price.

Beauty is not in the face; beauty is a light in the heart.

Most people who ask for advice from others have already resolved to act as it pleases them.

If you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work.

Are you a politician asking what your country can do for you, or a zealous one asking what you can do for your country? If you are the first then you are a parasite, if the second then you are an oasis in the desert.

Truth is a deep kindness that teaches us to be content in our everyday life and share with the people the same happiness.

You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.

To understand the heart and mind of a person, look not at what he has already achieved, but at what he aspires to.

Faith is a knowledge within the heart, beyond the reach of proof.

Death most resembles a prophet who is without honor in his own land, or a poet who is a stranger among his people.

Love... it surrounds every being and extends slowly to embrace all that shall be.

Would that I were a dry well, and that the people tossed stones into me, for that would be easier than to be a spring of flowing water that the thirsty pass by, and from which they avoid drinking.

If your heart is a volcano, how shall you expect flowers to bloom?

Rebellion without truth is like spring in a bleak arid desert.

Poverty is a veil that obscures the face of greatness. An appeal is a mask covering the face of tribulation.

Love possesses not, nor will it be possessed, for love is sufficient unto love.

Pain and foolishness lead to great bliss and complete knowledge, for Eternal Wisdom created nothing under the sun in vain.

Nor shall derision prove powerful against those who listen to humanity, or those who follow in the footsteps of divinity, for they shall live forever. Forever.

They consider me to have sharp and penetrating vision because I see them through the mesh of a sieve.

Time has been transformed and we have changed, it has advanced and set us in motion, it has unveiled its face inspiring us with bewilderment and exhilaration.

Yesterday we obeyed kings and bent our necks before emperors. But today we kneel only to truth follow only beauty and obey only love.

When you are sorrowful look again in your heart and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.

The lust for comfort, that stealthy thing that enters the house a guest, and then becomes a host, and then a master.

You have your ideology and I have mine.

Art is a step from what is obvious and well-known toward what is arcane and concealed.

Faith is an oasis in the heart which will never be reached by the caravan of thinking.

Wisdom stands at the turn in the road and calls upon us publicly, but we consider it false and despise its adherents.

Say not 'I have found the truth ' but rather 'I have found a truth.'

When love beckons to you, follow him, though his ways are hard and steep. And when his wings enfold you, yield to him, though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you.

Zeal is a volcano, the peak of which the grass of indecisiveness does not grow.

No man can reveal to you nothing but that which already lies half-asleep in the dawning of your knowledge.

The just is close to the people's heart, but the merciful is close to the heart of God.

For life and death are one even as the river and the sea are one.

Hallow the body as a temple to comeliness and sanctify the heart as a sacrifice to love, love recompenses the adorers.