Your children are not your children.

They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

kahlil gibran, on children

thank you for sharing this, feeding the soil.


2 Responses to your children are not your children

  1. tessa bessa says:

    i was just flipping through that today

  2. Lorissa says:

    This is an old favorite of mine, too. Love Kahlil Gibron. A friend of mine passed it along to me when I was pregnant and it’s even on my blog from a while ago. I especially like to think about being a “stable bow”…which I don’t really think I am…and I also like the idea that our children are here to teach us and to move us forward, not for us to hold them and keep them trapped in our current ways of doing things…

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