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Guest House by Rumi

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.

New Words:

- guest house

- feelings/emotions: joy, depression, delight

- interactions: welcome, entertain, invite, sweep, treat, clear out

- characters: honorably, malice, meanness

Discussion Questions:

1. What is the main metaphor in the poem? What is the connection of guesthouse with human being’s life?

2. What does the word ‘guest’ refer to in the poem?

3. What is Rumi suggesting how we should treat our unexpected guests?

4. According to Rumi, what should we be grateful for?

5. What is the message in The Guest House? How do we apply it in our daily life?

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