This is a fragment taken from the book “The Prophet” written by Khalil Gibran (1883-1931), a Lebanese poet, philosopher and artist. It ‘s an inspiring suggestion on how to grow through relationship and marriage.
The poet compares the couple with the two pillars of a temple. In order for the temple to exist (the relationship), it ‘s necessary that the pillars stand together yet with a distance, if the pillars of the temple stand too close, the temple will fall apart. Just as in a couple, there should be space for each person to grow as an independent entity and at the same time, both partners exist as a union of WE.
The Prophet, who has lived in a foreign city for twelve years, is about to board a ship that will take him back home. At the moment of his departure, he wishes to offer the people gifts but possesses nothing. The people gather round, each asks a question about the mysteries of life and the man’s wisdom is his gift.
Here’s what the Prophet says about marriage.
You were born together,
and together you shall be forevermore.
You shall be together when the white wings
of death scatter your days.
Aye, you shall be together even in the
silent memory of God.
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.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous,
but let each of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone
though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together, yet not too near together.
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress
grow not in each other’s shadow.