Who's at your door?

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’re 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 whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
— Rumi

I first heard this poem at a talk given by Wayne Dyer.  It had a profound effect on me at the time, and four years later, I can still remember hearing it and receiving the impact of its message.

Today, the stomach flu arrived at our door.  

I had big plans for today, the "perfect" Sunday.  Chephren and I were going to go to church (we have a new Centre for Spiritual Living just blocks from our house), we were going to play Lego, make some art, maybe go for a walk and then maybe have my parents over for dinner.  I had some vague notions about catching up on my report-writing in there too.

I did not envision cleaning up a variety of the most vile bodily fluids from many different surfaces in our house, for the better part of the last three hours.  


And yet, all along I have had the thought: "Ok.  This is what is being asked of me today.  This is my spiritual path for today.  What could be a higher spiritual path than that… I mean, really?"  

And I truly feel this way.  

I am sharing it with you because this represents a HUGE shift in perspective for me.  Often, I have been able to shift into this place, but only AFTER the "spiritual visitor" has come and gone.  Basically, hindsight has been my 20/20.  

I am so damn grateful that NOW is my current 20/20.  

I am so much more peaceful in the face of something that would normally trigger feelings of irritation, disappointment, worry and frankly, disgust.  

When I take an even further step back, I can even see that this unexpected visitor is a HUGE GIFT.  This past week I have been struggling with news (or awareness perhaps) of a very unwanted (and yet familiar) visitor… depression.  

This morning's spiritual teachings have shown me that I CAN MEET IT AT THE DOOR LAUGHING and INVITE IT IN.  

Heck, if I can do it with puke and poo… I can do it with anything, right?


Happy Sunday to you all.  I wish you peace and presence for whatever arrives at your door today.

Maren, NDCW