Review: The Prophet, Khalil Gibran

Rating: 5 out of 5

‘The Prophet’ falls very easily into the category of books that one would love or hate; for me, it is consistently in the former. This is philosophical poetry with very accessible style. I’ve considered it accessible enough, after all, to include quotations in my previous academic work, but also to read the book again in both times good and bad.

Further, the way that Mr Gibran describes the range and depth of humanity is the pull that this book has on me, and while it is definitely of a positive bent, a touch of positivism is so very welcome. Also, a general sense of lightness, of vivacity, is present throughout and the comments the author makes, while simplistic in many ways, also have a quiet healing quality.

For me, of course, another aspect of this book is my history with it. Having read this title several times, and liking it enough to take it up again, when I read it now I remember the times in the past when I read the book. Those are good memories, and they make a difference. Someone without this connection might not find the same peace in this book as I do. This is perhaps a more extreme version of the personal aspect that all of our reviews have — as we see all stories from the perspective of our own experience.

As my dissertation read:

Patient, over patient, is the captain of my ship.
The wind blows, and restless are the sails;
Even the rudder begs direction;
Yet quietly my captain awaits my silence.
And these my mariners,
who have heard the choir of the greater sea,
they too have heard me patiently.
Now they shall wait no longer.
I am ready.

Khalil Gibran

I think, after reading ‘The Prophet’, I am ready, for a little while.

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