Lamp, Lifeboat, Ladder

Forget the world, and so command the world.

Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder.

Help someone’s soul heal.

Walk out of your house like a shepherd.

Stay in the spiritual fire.

Let it cook you.

Be well-baked loaf

and lord of the table.

Come and be served

to your brothers.

You have been a source of pain.

Now you’ll be the delight.

You have been an unsafe house.

Now you will be the One who

sees into the invisible.

I said this, and  a voice came to

my ear: if you become this, you will be that!

Then silence. And now more silence.

A mouth is not for talking.

A mouth is for tasting this sweetness.

{Rumi, Ode 3090}

My beautiful sister sent me this poem. I love it. I also love the timing of my reading it. I do not think that there is ever an unfated incidence of reading- there is always a bit of destiny and God in every letter that we scan with our ever failing eyes.

As my sister typed up the poem, I doubt that she realized that halfway cross the world, I sat in a dark place. You may have heard of it. It goes by the name of “doubt.

It has ruined countless dreams.

It extinguishes stars and rationalizes their beauty.

It cools passions and stomps out wildfires of wants.

I doubted myself and my being in Africa. I doubted my efficacy. I doubted my success. I doubted that I could touch the world.

While doubt may extinguish all that is flammable, truth breathes light- not flame or destruction, instead, a halo of light is shone over what is so and what is real. My sister may have sent me a message, but entrapped in that message was a light.

I am here to be a latern- may I shine with the light of truth so that the gracious people that I meet will be void of shadows and head towards a brighter tomorrow.

I am here to be a lifeboat- may my body serve as a safe haven for those who are heavy burdened so tht they may seek respite from crushing waves. I am capable of withstanding a large amount of woes, let me prove to myself this ability. Let me prove to those around me who need it most.

I am here to be a ladder- securely lean me against the desired tree and use my hope, knowledges, follies, faith, and being in order to move. One rung has the power to revolutionize a person’s world. Let me be that rung.

But, most of all, give me the ability to see those who have been cast away , invisible, excluded. Let me see them as they truly are. I see not thief, vagabond, or cheat, but merely the ambiance of potential and the craving for a better everything .

To create the feeling of deserving is beyond difficult, it would be as effective as sowing seeds in trash pits and highways. It is what most people are lacking- not happiness, money, or status, but the feeling of knowing that one is deserving of things that are good. That is waht is deficient in this world.

The stars do not question their fiery nature and whether or not they are worthy.

They merely shine.


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