Why Would You Welcome Sorrow?

If you’ve ever done The Work of Byron Katie, you’ve probably experienced that your fears, your cruelness, and your sorrows can be your greatest teachers.

Sorrow is a starting point for self-inquiry. And through The Work it leads us back to peace.

With this in mind, Rumi’s poem is a fitting invitation:

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 are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.

Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

— Jelaluddin Rumi,
translation by Coleman Barks

© 1997 by Coleman Barks. All rights reserved.
From The Illuminated Rumi.


Todd Smith is a facilitator of The Work of Byron Katie. If you would like to do The Work with Todd, you can make an appointment here.

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