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The Invitation
January 20, 2005
11:12 am
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marley
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This is a poem by Oriah Mountain Dreamer . . interested to get some thoughts on this.

The Invitation

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life’s betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us to
be careful
be realistic
remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,
“Yes.”

It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.

January 20, 2005
11:27 am
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mamacinnamon
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Wow Marley,

I truly like this poem.

January 20, 2005
11:38 am
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seeking_answers
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Wow.. so much in this! What sticks out to me most..

"It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon... I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain mine or your own without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it.

I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself.

I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments."

These really hit a nerve for me! Very thought provoking! Thanks!

January 20, 2005
11:40 am
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marley
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"I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself."

I think this is the hardest line in the entire poem to understand and apply. I have had much difficulty with this, especially here on this site. It seems like we should do what we can to support others, and yet at times offering that support is harmful to us individually. Yet in order to be true to ourselves we must sometimes walk away and not give the support that others want from us.

January 20, 2005
11:49 am
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SweetAmanda
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Thank you. I printed that. =)

January 20, 2005
1:08 pm
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Tumbleweed8
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Thankyou, Marley, I like this very much, too. The line you mention is difficult. I know as I have done it many times and felt the lonliness from daring to stick to my principals. Thanks again for sharing this.

January 20, 2005
3:12 pm
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on my way
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Thank you marley...some things just touch m heart and soul and this certainly did.

January 21, 2005
10:35 am
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marley
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I want to know if you can sit with pain mine or your own without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it.

I was wondering about this line this morning. I mean it seems like so many people immediately try to make the pain go away and fix things when maybe it would be better to sit with it and experience it fully. Why do we just try to avoid?

January 21, 2005
11:06 am
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Refuse2GiveUp
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As for me, this line jarred me:

"It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children. "

Thinking of my partner as I read this poem, we are having financial problems because he's not working, and when I read this line, it reminded me that I DON'T see this in him. All I see is *myself* getting up "after a night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone," and doing what needs to be done to feed the children.

No matter how many stars I wish upon, no matter how much hope I have, no matter how hard I pray, I don't have any control over what he chooses to do and how he acts. I have to let go of those wishes, that hope, that indescribeable desire for him to just straighten out, for me, for us. I have to let go of that hope, for myself to go on. I can see that if I don't let go of it, I could spend a lifetime wishing on those stars, hoping and praying for this to work, and it won't do anything but leave me "doing what needs to be done." I'm already bruised and weary. I can't go on like that.

Peace. Refuse2GiveUp

P.s. thanks for posting this poem, Marley.

January 21, 2005
11:06 am
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Anonymous
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Because it hurts too much sometimes, and if feels like you might die even though in reality it will fade and get better with time like all things do.

January 21, 2005
11:08 am
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Refuse2GiveUp
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Hell yeah it hurts. Makes you want to say "forget it" altogether. I'm about done with all this "love" stuff. I've had enough. "Thanks but no thanks." Putting the shell back around my heart, kicking myself for ever uncovering it in the first place, you know what I mean?

Refuse2GiveUp

January 21, 2005
11:08 am
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Anonymous
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And also I think this line shows that it takes a strong person to endure the pain and get through it, and a coward is the kind that runs from it and never faces it, at least that is what it tells me.

January 21, 2005
11:08 am
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Refuse2GiveUp
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LOL~ 🙂 That is too ironic...

Refuse2GiveUp

January 21, 2005
11:13 am
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marley
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I think that is true - cowards run from pain and the people who sit with it and work through it are the ones with the strength. It is making the choice and staying dedicated to it that helps us in the end and gives us some more self-confidence because you learn that you can live through it - even when it is awful and all you want to do is scream UNCLE.

Refuse2giveup - I know it is an instinctive reaction to want to close your heart up after being betrayed, but think of all the wonderful opportunities you could be missing!

January 21, 2005
11:13 am
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Anonymous
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Well think about it "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger" I think that pain makes you stronger so you can endure it again.

January 21, 2005
11:29 am
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marley
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I guess the real test isn't just not getting killed though - it is actually getting through things. Life is pretty tough, all things considered.

January 21, 2005
12:18 pm
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Anonymous
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Yeah and learning and not making the same mistakes over and over again. Someone once told me "until you learn the lesson, whatever you are in will continue" or something along those lines. Lessons that seem to be the hardest to learn are the ones that are the best to learn.

January 21, 2005
12:22 pm
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marley
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I think that the lines that follow "If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy." go along those lines too, I mean it is that kind of lesson that teaches you what kind of person you ARE and who you can BECOME.

January 21, 2005
12:37 pm
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Anonymous
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In all honesty I hope that I never go back to what I was when I was with him. I know I was just horrible. I know it, and I know that I don't ever want to be in those type of games again, maybe it's because in a sense I lost, I am not sure but I know that I cannot do that again, I thought he cared and in some ways I think he did, but it wasn't enough for me. And in the end, him ending this will be the best thing for me.

Staying true to oneself is really the only way to be able to go to bed at night and like who you are.

January 21, 2005
12:42 pm
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marley
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In all honesty I hope you don't either. I think that you have really wonderful qualities as a person and you pushed all those aside because of this *relationship* I am not even sure what to call it with mr. jack. I know that you have people in your life who care about you and can give you the support you need. The only question there has ever been is can you accept it? I think that for a long time you could not bear the accusation of betrayal by Mr. Jack and it led you to betray your own soul. Being whole with yourself is a wonderful thing, it does help you sleep at night and you sleep even better be-in-g with yourself than with another person. Besides they sweat and snore and hog the covers!

January 21, 2005
1:05 pm
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Anonymous
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LOL, so true, I know there is people there, but sometimes I feel like if I don't do this somewhat on my own, then I won't really get from it what I need to get from it. I lost a lot from being with him, I lost just being me, caring for other people besides my own problems that were ALL the time, and most of all I lost all respect security in myself and esteem. And in the end I most likely could have prevented all of this if I had just listened to everyone then most of this could have been prevented. In all honesty I am glad though that it did happen, because I know this lesson I will never have to learn again. Ever, and to me that is some relief.

In all honesty, when I was talking to Mr. Jack last night, it almost seemed like the same games he always plays, where it won't work we can't date, whatever, and I sat back and realized that winning isn't this important to me anymore. And for once when I said I needed him out of my life for me to get over this, I actually meant it, and it was a big weight lifted off my chest, where I could actually breathe again. And I think when I thanked him, i meant it because I know that I would never have been able to do this one on my own for some reason, at least not with a great big push from him.

January 21, 2005
1:06 pm
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Anonymous
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BTW- I am glad to hear that the house is going well for you.

January 21, 2005
1:11 pm
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marley
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Thanks about the house. I love it. But I really hope that you do get through this. I know the last time I talked to one of the guys I used to know - he was pretty rude and yelling and stuff and all I could say was thank you. In a way it is like thanks for opening my eyes and helping me realize you are such a jerk and I never want to talk to you again and sort of you have to say something and you can't tell him what a pathetic whining no good piece of an excuse for a human being he really is and you have just realized that you refuse to sink to his level and that relieves you a little so you need to say thanks for helping me realize I am a better person than all of this. I really wish you the best. :)!

January 21, 2005
1:21 pm
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Anonymous
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Thank you, it is hard when you see things in people that other people just don't see and you know what a shitty person they are and I guess like you know, I internalized a lot of that into me and not onto Mr. Jack where I am not perfect, I certainly am not to blame for all of it. I am to blame for sticking with it thinking in some way it could work if I worked a little harder.

I dont think Mr. Jack was too thrilled at my thanks, or at my desire to need him out of my life. But I know that if I don't then I will never get past this, and for me I need to, this trip to the hospital this weekend hit a little to close to home for me. Makes you kinda rethink and reappreciate things as well as reevaluate things as well.

January 21, 2005
1:48 pm
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sewunique
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Marley,

This is great, thanks for sharing it. You do come up with some interesting articles. Where do you find all this stuff?

Sew, ps I saved it too.

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