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Tracing the Constellation of Your Inner Life

Here’s a Rainer Maria Rilke poem that I find full of meaning — despite the fact that it’s one of the shortest poems I know.

With highly distilled wisdom, it reminds us that…

    • We yearn “not to be cut off” from the source.
    • Our inner lives are as vast and worthy of exploration as outer space.
    • What we all seek is a sense that we’ve come home.
    • Home is to be found “in here,” not somewhere “out there.”
    • Our inner home is a place of beauty, “hurled through with birds and deep / with the winds of homecoming.”

And Rilke does it all in 39 words, about one-third of the number I used to write this post. Amazing!

Ah, not to be cut off,
not through the slightest partition
shut out from the law of the stars …

(Excerpted from Ahead of All Parting: The Selected Poetry and Prose of Rainer Maria Rilke, Translated by Stephen Mitchell. Read the full poem here.)

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