Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced

dragonfly

Balanced and vulnerable

Some of you say, “Joy is greater than sorrow,” and others say, “Nay, sorrow is the greater.”

But I say unto you, they are inseparable.

Together they come, and when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.

Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.

Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.


by Kahlil Gibran (January 6, 1883 – April 10, 1931)
from The Prophet (1923)
section – Joy and Sorrow
image – Mr. Negative

Balance

I like this passage. Kahlil Gibran describes sorrow and joy as if they’re angels that keep us company: “Together they come, and when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.”

If we didn’t love, would we feel either?

“Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced” is interesting, too. Half full or half empty, or even empty in the cupboard, a glass is not static: it’s meant to be emptied and filled and emptied again. The glass in the cupboard is at a standstill, but its very existence, empty in the cupboard, means there is an expectation of and availability for fullness.

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