Monthly Archives: February 2010

better than the seeming goodness

I’ve always enjoyed the writings of Kahlil Gibran. I was browsing through Gibran’s Wanderer a few days ago and this caught my eye:

Two men were walking in the valley and one man pointed with his finger toward the mountain side, and said, “See you that hermitage? There lives a man who has long divorced the world. He seeks but after God and naught else upon this earth.”

And the other man said, “He shall not find God until he leaves his hermitage, and the aloneness of his hermitage, and returns to our world, to share our joy and pain, to dance with our dancers at the wedding-feast, and to weep with those who weep around the coffins of our dead.”

And the other man was convinced in his heart, though in spite of his conviction he answered, “I agree with all that you say, yet I believe the hermit is a good man. And may it not well be that one good man by his absence does better than the seeming goodness of these many men?”

A paraphrase of Do No Harm, or something different? At what point in the flow of a tragedy like the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake is it best to take no action, do nothing, and be comfortable with that?

Advertisements