The Invitation by Oriah

So there is this poem by Oriah, hanging on the door of my toilet.
This way, it touches me every single day (and I pretty much know it by heart now 😉 )
It is so beautiful and to me it describes so well how life, people and the world should and could be. Amazing, beautiful and pure.

This is why this has been like my bible for the last uh…lot of years. It has been my guide, inspiration and teacher. I try to live up to it and inhale the lessons it hides. Striving to be able to say ‘yes, that’s me, I can do that, or I can be that’ after every paragraph I read. But it also inspires me in how I see and treat others.
And I can tell you it’s been a great journey! No matter how often I have read it, I find new words, messages and lessons over and over again.
Every single time I proudly think I got a part tackled – ‘Yes that’s me! I can do that!’, other parts hit me and I humbly see there’s something else I could work on. That I forgot to take care of some things in the process. Or that I just thought that I already had covered those parts, but in fact I didn’t realy. Cause now times have changed, I have changed, grown maybe, gone deeper. All of a sudden things are to be seen in a different light. And while I almost had filled my whole card of check boxes with ‘yes’-es, I can start all over again, because the all fade into ‘well… yea… no… not really actually…’
So in good spirits I continue my journey and start refinding and rebuilding those ‘yes’-es again.

I am very grateful this poem got to my attention one day and hereby I invite you to read it and if it comes on your path on the right place in the time to get touched and maybe even guided by it as well.


The Invitation by Oriah

It doesn’t interest me
what you do for a living.
I want to know
what you ache for
and if you dare to dream
of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me
how old you are.
I want to know
if you will risk
looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me
what planets are
squaring your moon…
I want to know
if you have touched
the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened
by life’s betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know
if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know
if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you
to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations
of being human.

It doesn’t interest me
if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear
the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know
if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live
or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me
who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me
where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know
what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know
if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like
the company you keep
in the empty moments.

By Oriah © Mountain Dreaming,
from the book The Invitation
published by HarperONE, San Francisco,
1999 All rights reserved