The prophet, Almustafa, has lived in the foreign city of Orphalese for 12 years and is about to board a ship which will carry him home. He is stopped by a group of people, with whom he discusses topics such as life and the human condition. The book is divided into chapters dealing with work, love, marriage, eating and drinking, joy and sorrow, self-knowledge, teaching, friendship, pleasure, beauty, religion, crime and punishment, reason and passion, and death.
And I too am my own forerunner, for the long shadow stretching before me at sunrise shall gather under my feet at the noon hour. Yet another sunrise shall lay another shadow before me, and that also shall be gathered at another noon.
Always have we been our own forerunners, and always shall we be. And all that we have gathered and shall gather shall be but seeds for fields yet unploughed. We are the fields and the ploughmen, the gatherers and the gathered.
When you were a wandering desire in the mist, I too was there, a wandering desire. Then we sought one another, and out of our eagerness dreams were born. And dreams were time limitless, and dreams were space without measure.
And when you were a silent word upon Life’s quivering lips, I too was there, another silent word. Then Life uttered us and we came down the years throbbing with memories of yesterday and with longing for tomorrow, for yesterday was death conquered and tomorrow was birth pursued.
And now we are in God’s hands. You are a sun in His right hand and I an earth in His left hand. Yet you are not more, shining, than I, shone upon.
And we, sun and earth, are but the beginning of a greater sun and a greater earth. And always shall we be the beginning.
. . . . . .
You are your own forerunner, you the stranger passing by the gate of my garden.
And I too am my own forerunner, though I sit in the shadows of my trees and seem motionless.
Gibran's best-known work, 'The Prophet' is composed of twenty-six poetic essays. Its popularity grew markedly during the 1960s with the American counterculture and then with the flowering of the New Age movements. It has remained popular with these and with the wider population to this day. Since it was first published in 1923, it has never been out of print, and has been translated into more than forty languages.
General Press is proud to bring together, for the first time in ebook form, all of Gibran’s works into a single collection.
This collection features the following works:
A Tear and a Smile
The Broken Wings
The Earth Gods
The Garden of the Prophet
I Believe in You
Jesus the Son of Man
Lazarus and His Beloved
The Madman—His Parables and Poems
The New Frontier
Sand and Foam
The Wanderer—His Parables and His Sayings
You Have Your Lebanon and I Have My Lebanon
Your Thought and Mine
The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran
"And I too am my own forerunner, for the long shadow stretching before me at sunrise shall gather under my feet at the noon hour. Yet another sunrise shall lay another shadow before me, and that also shall be gathered at another noon."
"Always have we been our own forerunners, and always shall we be. And all that we have gathered and shall gather shall be but seeds for fields yet unploughed. We are the fields and the ploughmen, the gatherers an the gathered."
Men and women laughed at me and some ran to their houses in fear of me.
And when I reached the market place, a youth standing on a house-top cried, “He is a madman.” I looked up to behold him; the sun kissed my own naked face for the first time. For the first time the sun kissed my own naked face and my soul was inflamed with love for the sun, and I wanted my masks no more. And as if in a trance I cried, “Blessed, blessed are the thieves who stole my masks.”
Thus I became a madman.
And I have found both freedom and safety in my madness; the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us.
But let me not be too proud of my safety. Even a thief in a jail is safe from another thief.
And the God bestowed upon her a love that would desert he forever upon her first sigh of earthly satisfaction, and a sweetness that would vanish with her first awareness of flattery.
And He gave her wisdom from heaven to lead to the all-righteous path, and placed in the depth of her heart and eye that sees the unseen, and created in he an affection and goodness toward all things. He dressed her with raiment of hopes spun by the angels of heaven from the sinews of the rainbow. And He cloaked her in the shadow of confusion, which is the dawn of life and light.
Then the God took consuming fire from the furnace of anger, and searing wind from the desert of ignorance, and sharp- cutting sands from the shore of selfishness, and coarse earth from under the feet of ages, and combined them all and fashioned Man. He gave to Man a blind power that rages and drives him into a madness which extinguishes only before gratification of desire, and placed life in him which is the specter of death.
And the god laughed and cried. He felt an overwhelming love and pity for Man, and sheltered him beneath His guidance.
The Prophet is a collection of poetic essays that are philosophical, spiritual, and, above all, inspirational. Gibran’s musings are divided into twenty-eight chapters covering such sprawling topics as love, marriage, children, giving, eating and drinking, work, joy and sorrow, housing, clothes, buying and selling, crime and punishment, laws, freedom, reason and passion, pain, self-knowledge, teaching, friendship, talking, time, good and evil, prayer, pleasure, beauty, religion, and death.
Each essay reveals deep insights into the impulses of the human heart and mind. The Chicago Post said of The Prophet: “Cadenced and vibrant with feeling, the words of Kahlil Gibran bring to one’s ears the majestic rhythm of Ecclesiastes . . . If there is a man or woman who can read this book without a quiet acceptance of a great man’s philosophy and a singing in the heart as of music born within, that man or woman is indeed dead to life and truth.”
With twelve full-page drawings by Gibran, this beautiful work makes an incredible gift for anyone seeking enlightenment and inspiration.