The Invitation

Thanks to Scott for reminding me of this. I loved it when I first found it a few years ago, but it seems particularly appropriate now.

The Invitation

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 center of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life's betrayals or have become shriveled 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's 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 on the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, "Yes!"

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 center 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 Dreamer

21 Comments:

  1. Thats kind of why I posted it again

    I have it in a lovely frame I had made for it years ago and its what you see when you come into my house (if your looking of course hehe)

    I look at it every once in a while and for some reason Across the Universe put me in the mood to read it again

    Hope some of your list finds this as amazing as we do

      • Kashyyyk is a freaking paradise in my eyes. Its wet, rainy, and full of smart people. I got an awesome job with the Evil Empire, practically handed to me on a silver platter. Said awesome job has health insurance that is keeping J well stocked in meds and required dr visits. I joined a gym last week and am working towards being all muscular and stuff.

        Oh..and coffee. Coffee everywhere. Free coffee at work, cheap coffee nearby, silly foo-foo coffee on every corner. The air up here should smell like coffee considering how many coffee places there are.

    • What’s unfortunate is how often this is perceived to be aptly-timed. I think most of us need this kind of smack upside the head far more often than we should. We keep getting distracted by all the shiny, and lost track of the really important things.

      Like the awesome new people in our lives. :-)

      • Awww…..I take it that it means that you’ve at least MET someone. Best of luck. Hopefully the good idea to “what’s what” will point to positive.

        Now I just need to meet someone…hah.

          • Hmmm…it’s hard to go out much with the new job. But we’ll see. 2 weeks of travel every month combined with regular late nights when I am here is definately going to put a crimp in my social life.

            Not to mention, remember that I’m new in town. It’s hard to go out when you know NO ONE. And it’s hardly like I know all the great places to go, either. But, eh. Whatever. We shall see. I would rather like more friends, too. Just hard to find them as well.

    • As do we all. Except maybe Chris – he’s much further down that path than most of us. :)

      But the important thing isn’t how far down the path we are, but which path we choose to walk. And remembering that we are surrounded by loved ones who are more than happy to play marco polo and help us find our path again when we realize we’ve strayed.

      • Yes, which is why I try to talk to him as often as I can :) Maybe some of that wisdom will finally sink in, and most importantly, I will believe it.

        “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.”

        It’s not just learning to do these things myself, but being able to accept it as right, when other people are true to themselves no matter how it affects me.

        • You’re very, very right. And just being able to recognize that means you’re already far ahead of 90% of the folks out there.

          A friend and I shared a New Years resolution once (which we stole from an old Twin Peaks quote). “Always tell the truth; and always tell the hardest truth first.” Because after that, everything else is a piece of cake.

          It’s a bitch of a lesson to integrate into one’s life, but seriously reduces the overall drama level once you’ve gotten it down to habit.

          • I tend to know when things are true, but my human emotions still keep getting the better of me and making me react in damaging ways.

            Ah, Twin Peaks, still my bright shining beacon in the darkest of times. That show is like going home to me.

            I also tend to tell the truth a little bit too much, at times.

            • Twin Peaks will always be a very strange and disturbing memory for me. I didn’t watch it when it was on. I watched it as a marathon. 25 people in a studio apartment in Berkeley. All Friday night, all day and night Saturday and most of Sunday – the whole series, top to bottom. Weird fucking dreams those nights, let me tell you!

              Telling too much of the truth is part of my problem too. I don’t want to tell less of the truth, though. I just need to find a way of telling it that it’s easier for people to digest. Spoonful of sugar and all.

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