The Prophet

ISBN: 0679440674
ISBN 13: 9780679440673
By: Khalil Gibran

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About this book

The Prophet is a book of 26 prose poetry essays written in English by the Lebanese artist, philosopher & writer Kahlil Gibran. It was originally published in 1923 by Alfred A. Knopf. It's his best known work. It's been translated into over 40 languages & has never been out of print. Knopf sold 1159 of the 2000 copy 1st printing. Demand doubled the following year, doubled again the next year. Annual sales have risen steadily: from 12,000 in '35 to 111,000 in '61 to 240,000 in '65. The book sold its one millionth copy in '57. Worldwide, it sells over 5000 copies a week. The book will be in the public domain in the USA in 2018 altho it's already in the public domain in the European Union, Canada, Russia, S. Africa & Australia. Gibran instructed that on his death the royalties & copyrights to his materials be owned by his hometown, Bsharri, Lebanon. The Gibran National Committee, located in Bsharri, manages the Gibran Museum. Founded in '35, the GNC is a nonprofit corporation holding the exclusive rights to manage the author's copyright in & to his literary & artistic works. In 2009, the GNC granted exclusive rights to create a film based on The Prophet to Gibran: The Prophet, LLC, a group located in the USA.

Reader's Thoughts

Riku Sayuj

Re-read a classic to start off the new year. As with every classic, this too turned up in a new light. With echoes of Schopenhauer, Kant and even Comte, this deep poem suddenly took new life in this reading. Now what is left is to search out which way the influence spread before flowering in this expression - east to west, the other way, or is it an early amalgamation of all philosophy like all truly great poems are.

Mohamed Galal

-- مصنّفٌ هذا الكتاب بأنّه أشهر و أروع ما كتب جبران . -- قال عنه صاحبه " إنّه ديانتي و أقدسُ قدسيّات حياتي " -- أٌصدرَ بالإنجليزيّة عام 1923 م .-- عرّبه الأرشمندريت أنطونيوس بشير .-- استمرّ جبران في التعبير عن وحدة الوجود بصوره الأكثر من رائعة .-- زيارتي الثالثة عشر لجبران .--" إنّ جميع كتابات جبران تدعو إلى التفكير العميق ، بل ترغم قارئها على إعمال ذهنه و عقله .فإن كنتَ تخاف تفكّر فالأجدر بكَ ألّا تقرأ جبران " كلام أديب عندما سُئل عن جبران " .-- هو بالفعل كتاب مُرهِق خاصة في ظلّ عودتي له بعد انقطاع دام ثلاثة أشهر .-- من أجمل ما قرأت .-- شكرًا لكَ يا جبران : أدخلتني في حالة من الصفاء الذهني و السموّ الروحي .-- أتعجّب بشدّة : كيف وصل بعقله و قلبه إلى هذا المُنتَج الخيالي ! -- لمثل تلك الأعمال نقرأ ، و لهذا نعشق القراءة . -- اقتبست كثيرًا من الكتاب ، كدت أنقل محتوى الكتاب كلّه ! -- استحضر " جبران " تشبيهات أكثر من رائعة متوافقة مع تعاليم النبيّ التي أرساها في قلوب أتباعه .-- أرشحّه لكل عاشق للأدب ، عاشق للفنّ ، عاشق للحياة ، عاشق للإنسانيّة ، ساعي للسموّ ، عاشق لجبران !

Pulkit Singhal

Alright, so I think this might be the most beautiful book I have ever read. Each segment, each sentence, each word is quotable. If you were to note down some special moments from the book, you had write the book as it is. Such is the power the book possesses; it enchants you to the highest degree with its content, with its fluid divinity and its phenomenal poetic aura. At no point does it stop being divine. As rightly said in the epigraph for Kahlil Gibran: "His power came from some great reservoir of spiritual life else it could not have been so universal and potent, but the majesty and beauty of the language with which he clothed it were all his own."I am so impressed and am in such immense awe that if I were to choose my religious/spiritual text, this would be it. If I were to carry one book all the time with me (like Gita, Bible or Koran), this would be it. For I have never come across any aphorisms or any sermons in such rich poetic texture. And it is so refreshing when you find out that the book carries a sense of pragmatism all along in its teachings. Yes, it has its own sense of romanticism and morality but no where does it digress to make one lose interest out of lack of practicality. Let me quote some lines here:And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, Speak to us of childrenAnd he said: Your children are not your children.These 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 thoughtsFor they have their own thoughts.You may house their bodies but not their soulsFor their souls dwell in the house of tomorrowwhich 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 childrenas living arrows are sent forth.The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,and He bends you with His mightthat 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. On clothes:Your clothes conceal much of your beauty, yet they hide not the unbeautiful.And though you seek in garments the freedom of privacy you may find in them a harness and a chain.Would that you could meet the sun and the wind with more of your skin and less of your raiment,For the breath of life is in the sunlight and the hand of life is in the wind.On reason and passion:Your reason and your passion are the rudder and the sails of your seafaring soul. If either your sails or your rudder be broken, you can but toss and drift, or else be held at a standstill in mid-seas.For reason, ruling alone, is a force confining; and passion, unattended, is a flame that burns to its own destruction.Therefore let your soul exalt your reason to the height of passion, that it may sing;And let it direct your passion with reason, that your passion may live through its own daily resurrection, and like the phoenix rise above its own ashes.On Joy and Sorrow:The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter's oven?And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives? In the last chapter: If this be vague words, then seek not to clear them. Vague and nebulous is the beginning of all things, but not their end, And I fain would have you remember me as a beginning. Life, and all that lives, is conceived in the mist and not in the crystal. And who knows but a crystal is mist in decay? And as you can see, I am going all gaga over the poetry in the book. So let me quote some lines that express it the most:Fain would I take with me all that is here. But how shall I?A voice cannot carry the tongue and the lips that gave it wings. Alone must it seek the ether.And alone and without his nest shall the eagle fly across the sun. At night the watchmen of the city say, 'Beauty shall rise with the dawn from the east.'And at noontide the toilers and the wayfarers say, ' We have seen her leaning over the earth from the windows of the sunset.Some of you say, "Joy is greater than sorrow," and others say, "Nay, sorrow is the greater."But I say unto you, they are inseparable.Together they come, and when one sits, alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed. Build of your imaginings a bower in the wilderness ere you build a house within the city walls.For even as you have home-comings in your twilight, so has the wanderer in you, the ever distant and alone.Your house is your larger body.It grows in the sun and sleeps in the stillness of the night; and it is not dreamless. Does not your house dream? and dreaming, leave the city for grove or hill-top?And you, vast sea, sleeping mother,Who alone are peace and freedom to the river and the stream,Only another winding will this stream make, only another murmur in this gladeAnd then I shall come to you, a boundless drop to a boundless ocean.We wanderers, ever seeking the lonelier way, begin no day where we have ended another, and no sunrise finds us where left by sunset. Even while the earth sleeps we travel. We are the seeds of that tenacious plant, and it is in our ripeness and our fullness of heart that we are given to the wind to be scattered.Surely there is no greater gift to a man than that which turns all his aims into parching lips and all life into a fountain.And in this lies my honor and my reward-That whenever I come to the fountain to drink I find the living water itself thirsty; And it drinks me while I drink it. So much to be re-read again and again not only to just gain more out of them because the nectar I truly feel is overflowing in these verses but also to appreciate the sheer beauty and divinity of them. This book thus I suppose should be read by everyone. EVERYONE!

Erinina Marie

The Prophet by Kalil GhibranThis book was given to me as a gift from my director in the last show that I did. I carried it with me everywhere and read it on the train, anytime I was waiting or bored. It brought me such immense comfort and inspiration. When I would read it’s pages before a long day at work, I came to work much more peaceful, than crabby. It’s messages are simple, yet profound and there is room in them to interpret them and hear them according to wherever you are in your life. I think that this book came into my life at the right time, it was a gift, then both my boyfriend and my mother highly praised it while I was reading it.

Jahn Sood

I'm not sure that this book lived up to the thousands of recomendations that I got to read it. It is very beautiful, many of the lines are great, but as a whole, it seems like a sort of ode to indecision. Maybe I didn't take enough time with it, but seemed to me to be so heavily focussed on balance and contradictions that it didn't make any extreme proclamations. Maybe balance is more real than that which is self-glorifying, but I just wasn't as moved as I wanted to be. Maybe at a different time in my life I would have soaked this up. Then again, I read this book in a car with loud music playing after recovering only half way from the flu, so I might have been biased and unnecesarily bitter and disbelieving. My reaction might also be coming off Thoreau which is beautiful to read, but also has intense philosophy behind it. I think this book is more like looking at something beautiful but not particularly deep. Philosophical porn, if you will. I bet that will offend the people that really take it seriously. Shit, that isn't my intention. I think I will take the book back to maine and re-read it there on a mountain or on the beach and think about it in that context and then maybe it will have a deeper effect...if I ever make it back to maine. I hope so.


This book is cool because it is an excellent display of how similar the world's religions truly are. When it comes down to it, they are really all the same and the differences are mainly aesthetic.However, pretty much any person who has learned about many different religions is really going to come to the same conclusion. All the religions in the world are all compatible, because their entire purpose is to provide a belief system to help people in a society get along. The rules that make humans get along are all pretty similar regardless of culture, so the religions end up the same.I would recommend this book to college boys who want to impress girls, because when I was reading it, girls seemed pretty impressed. Also, I would recommend it to teenagers who want to feel spiritual and deep. However, as you get older, you'll probably get far too jaded to appreciate it.


Of course I remember almost nothing of this book, except that it was an arduous journey through the elementary and unspecific explanation of religious doctrine that tries to be open and liberal, but is actually very conservative and full of ideology that I feel is unrewarding mostly due to the difficulty in actual application. If anyone reads this, although I see no reason why they would, listen to my words. The truth, however you define it, however you need it, is simple. When you see it you know. When you don't, or can't, there is doubt. Do not fill yourself with the doubt of uncertainty. Know thyself, and be good to others. As the great Prophet has done before me, I shall tear off the shroud of mystic truth which has become my body and mind and shed it upon the streets where the needy walk, so that they might find compassion and knowledge in the tattered cloth of my foolish youth. For the Prophet offers his own words as truth for others and in turn so shall I lay the same trap, in the hope that the darkness in which I wrap you shall make you forge your own dagger with which to cut yourself free from the books you once called teachers. Because I will not deny anyone that truth; all things are teachers. But all teachers lie, by accident or intention, to make others see the world their way. And of course you will blame me for doing the same, but I will try my best not to impose any other doctrine than to not be led astray by the nectar of another's truth. The wine tastes fine until it is drunk in full, and then one cannot find their way home. Allow me to sober you many who have lavished Gibran with 5 stars. His is the work of dreamers and that is what everyone loves, but dreamers do just that, wasting their lives into the infinite circles of their mind, calculating the perfection of time and space. I would rather you lower yourself to the plain of human excrement, so that you one day exclaim in great truth, "The Prophet is a shit stick! Good for nothing more than wiping away reality." Because that is what Gibran wants you to do. Wipe away reality, and live in a fantasy that cannot exist.In truth Gibran oscillates a great deal in his tackling of his subject matter, life. In some regards he appears dead on because of his continued juxtaposition of opposites often claiming things embody their "other," saying each is to be taken in measure. "For even as love crowns you, so shall he crucify you." As much as I would agree with this sentiment (no one could really ever disagree with it), it is too general, like most of his assertions.He excites his audience to be good, as if this were an inherent part of our nature, just bursting though the seems of our mortality. There just really isn't anything to disagree with, and that is what makes his statements so dangerous and a plague on the unwary. He gives us hope beyond measure, and humanity, in all its desire, fills its tiny cup with all that it can hold. Gibran gives us too much and consequently too little. What would one do with boundless love? Quit their job, leave home, become a traveler on a distant shore whom others beg for knowledge and truth. Though we all may have the capacity to become prophets, it is likely most of us won't. The children of god are fed with food, not promises of the eternal.Ah, so much to write, but not all is bad. Gibran does say some nice things here and there, but I just happen to take issue with religious folk who don't think the dissemination of their message is harmful. What is harmful? The incomplete is harmful. To knowingly give someone a jigsaw puzzle with pieces missing or withheld is a dangerous business. At which point you will want to ask me, if their is no accessible truth that can be put into words, they why not go to the philosophical fish mongers and beg for scraps at the end of their business day? The only answer I can give, ironically, is to become your own paragon through the study of books and then the burning of them. Gibran will set you on a path with a happy ending, and as I've said I find it hard to disagree with some of his more choice observations, "He who wears his morality but as his best garment were better naked."But as one of my favorite philosophers said "There are no happy endings, because nothing ends.(Schmendrick the Magician). Gibran offers us daily peace, and life and death in one hand, and the promise of the wandering life of the spirit in our daily toil, a place to recline when the world overwhelms. I commend his attempt to sooth the mind of his listeners but we have all received a lolly from the dentist or doctor, whose truth fades quickly in the passing of sugary time. And at the end we are left with the stick of truth, as the Prophet's listeners are left with nothing, because they cannot stand on their own. He leaves them with a host of unfinished dreams and unrefined motivations. They have inherited an unwieldy burden, one they cannot overcome if they take the Prophets words as truth.The problem is that this is a philosophy book masquerading as a beautiful story...which is the poison in the ear. It's easy to gobble up "truth" when it's coated in confection. So just be careful out there and remember what the Prophet said."If the teacher is indeed wise, he does not bid you enter the house of his wisdom (even if you beg), but rather leads you to the threshold of your own mind"Gibran gets a second star just for that line.


أعتقد أنها ستكون أروع شئ قرأته وسأقرأه عن الأنسانية والحب والعطاء والحكمة كتاب رائع يستحق الاقتناء وقرائته أكثر من مرة أبدع ثروت أباظه في ترجمته ويكأنه علي لسان عربي وليس بمترجم أشد المقطوعات أثارت أعجابيفي المأكل والمشرب وحين تنحر ذبيحتك ناجها في سريرتك قائلا:"إن الفدرة التي تذبحك هي نفسها... تذبحني؛وأنا مثلك مصيري الفناء.فإن الناموس الذي أسلمك إلى يدي سوف يسلمني إلى يد أشد بأسا.وحين تقضم التفاحة بين اسنانك،ناجها قائلا:"لسوف تحيا بذورك في جسدي، وتزهر براعم غدك في قلبي، ويصبح عبيرك أنفاسي؛ومعا نبتهج على مر الفصول". وفي الفرح والحزنحين يستخفك الفرح ارجع الي اعماق قلبك قتري انك في الحقيقة تفرح بما كان مصدر حزنك وحين يغمرك الحزن تأمل قلبك من جديد فستري أنك في الحقيقة تبكي مما كان يوماً مصدر بهجتك الجريمة والعقابمن أراد منكم أن يجلد الجاني فليمتحن سريرة المجني عليه وفي الوداعإن ما يبدو لأعينكم أضعف ما فيكم وأكثره اضطراباً هو في الحق أقوي ما فيكم وأشده ثباتاً


Verily I say unto you thatyou will find no profundity hereunless, perhaps, you take up that bongor eat that mushroom.Nor will you find anything that thousands of othersdid not say long, long before, far more magnificently.And you may very well sob, asking yourself,"Why did I waste an hour of my time thus?"Fear not. You may happen upon an opportunity to weave itinto a novel.Now, return to Plato, Aeschylus, Aristophanes... for your profundity,and do not forget that life is too short for tripe.


This is a semi-poetic collection of views on important things in life, like love, giving, crime and punishment, pain, talking, and beauty. They are told by a wise person who gives his opinions when solicited by the town on his day of departure. I like this part:And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, Speak to us of Children.And he said: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.---------2 January 2012I read it again today. What a difference 3+ years can make between readings. This good book now looks even better."You often say, 'I would give, but only to the deserving.' The trees in your orchard say not so, nor the flocks in your pasture. They give that they may live, for to withhold is to perish.""Some of you say, 'Joy is greater than sorrow,' and others say, 'Nay, sorrow is the greater.'But I say unto you, they are inseparable."

بسنت الصاوي

" ومنكم من يسعى إلى من يثرثرون؛ خشية الخلو إلى نفسه ؛ لأن سكون الوحدة يكشف لأعينهم خفايا ذواتهم العارية فيفرون منها . " *~~*~~* " ومن اكتسى بفضائله ليبرز في أبهى زيه ، أولى به أن يظل عاريا "النبي جبران خليل جبرانكتاب حفُر في قلبي هي فلسفة الحياة بكل ما تحملهمن فرح و حزن و إدراك و فهمو عبادة و صداقة .أحسست بـِأن جبران يتجول داخل عقليو يدون ما يجده بداخله !هي نفس أفكاري ، نفس معتقداتينفس إدراكي للحياة.هي فلسفة تصلح لكل الأزمانو كل الأوقاتكتاب قلما أن يقرأه شخصولا يتأثر به !**قرأت ترجمة د.ثروت عكاشةهي الأخرى جميلةلها موسيقى خاصة بهايترجم ما قاله جبران ببراعةليس بتصلب .يستحق و بجدارة ال 5 نجوم

Megan Baxter

I don't know if I can write this review. I really don't. It makes me feel extremely vulnerable, to contemplate putting so much of my heart out on view for people on the internet to see. I also don't know if I have the words.Reading this book was both devastating and awe-inspiring. I was moved beyond words, particularly when I started reading it, started to let the words wash over me, when I realized how familiar they were, not the words, but the meanings behind them. It felt like something I'd been swimming in my whole life and never realized it.Note: The rest of this review has been withdrawn due to the recent changes in Goodreads policy and enforcement. You can read why I came to this decision here.In the meantime, you can read the entire review at Smorgasbook

Huda Yahya

ولا تقل في ذاتك : قد وجدت الحق بل قل بالأحرى : قد وجدت حقا♥،♥،♥،♥،♥،♥الحب لا يعطي إلا من نفسه، ولا يأخذ إلا من نفسهوالحب لا يملك، ولا يطيق أن يكون مملوكاً وحسب الحب أنه حب♥،♥،♥،♥،♥،♥إذا الحب أوما إليكم فاتبعوه حتى وان كانت مسالكه وعرة وكثيرة المزالقوإذا الحب لفكم بجناحيه فاطمئنوا اليه حتى وإن جرحتكم النصال المخبوءه تحت قوادمهوإذا الحب خاطبكم فصدقوه حتى وان عبث صوته باحلامكم كما تعبث ريح الشمال بازهار الحديقة ♥،♥،♥،♥،♥،♥إذا أحب أحدكم فلا يقولنإن الله في قلبيوليقل بالأحرى إنني في قلب اللهولا يخطرن لكم ببال أن في مستطاعكم توجيه الحب بل إن الحب إذا وجدكم مستحقين هو الذي يوجهكم♥،♥،♥،♥،♥،♥ربنا وإلهناإننا لا نستطيع أن نلتمس منك حاجة لأنك تعرف حاجتنا قبل أن تولد في أعماقناأنت حاجتناوكلما زدتنا من ذاتك زدتنا من كل شئ♥،♥،♥،♥،♥،♥وإن يكن مبتغاكم أن تنزلوا طاغية عن عرشهفاعملوا أولاً على تحطيم ذلك العرش الذي أقمتموه له في قلوبكمإذ كيف لطاغية أن يحكم شعباً حراً وأبياً ما لم يكن في حرية ذلك الشعب شيء من الاستبداد وفي إبائه شيء من الذل؟♥،♥،♥،♥،♥،♥نحن نتكلم عندما توصد أمامنا أبواب السلام عن افكارناوعندما نعجز عن الوصول لحالة السكون في وحدة قلوبنانتحول لنستولي على شفاهنافالصوت يلهينا ويسليناوفي الكثير من كلامنا يكاد فكرنا ينفجر من الألم والكآبةلأن الفكر طائر من طيور الفضاء ن يمكنه ان يبسط جناحيه في قفص الألفاظولكنه لا يستطيع أن يطير♥،♥،♥،♥،♥،♥أولادكم ليسوا لكمأولادكم أبناء الحياة المشتاقة إلى نفسهابكم يأتون إلى العالمولكن ليس منكمومع أنهم يعيشون معكمفهم ليسوا ملكاً لكمأنتم تستطيعون أن تمنحوهم محبتكمولكنكم لا تقدرون أن تغرسوا فيهم بذور أفكاركملأن لهم أفكارأً خاصةً بهموفي طاقتكم أن تصنعوا المساكم لأجسادكمولكن نفوسهم لا تقطن في مساكنكمفهي تقطن في مسكن الغدالذي لا تستطيعون أن تزوروه حتى ولا في أحلامكموإن لكم أن تجاهدوا لكي تصيروا مثلهمولكنكم عبثاً تحاولون أن تجعلوهم مثلكم لأن الحياة لا ترجع إلى الوراءولا تلذ لها الإقامة في منزل الأمسأنتم الأقواس وأولادكم سهام حية قد رمت بها الحياة عن أقواسكمفإن رامي السهام ينظر العلامة المنصوبة على طريق اللانهايةفيلويكم بقدرته لكي تكون سهامه سريعة بعيدة المدىلذلكفليكن التواؤكم بين يدي رامي السهام الحكيم لأجل المسرة والغبطةلأنه كما يحب السهم الذي يطير من قوسههكذا يحب القوس الذي يثبت بين يديه ♥،♥،♥،♥،♥،♥كلٌمـا عمٌق الحزنٌ حفرَةً في كينونتك،،ازدادت قُدرتك على احتواء فَرح أكثر


Now that I'm reading The Prophet again, words that I read twenty-seven years ago still ring clearly in my mind as I read them again today. It was a wonderful moment a few evenings ago to find myself reciting aloud and from memory passages that had struck me then--and now--to the very core. Kahlil Gibran spent a couple of years revising The Prophet. Since it is a short book, the concepts come across as distilled. The influences of his native Lebanon as well as his love for scripture, come through in the scriptural-like language. I am savoring this book slowly this time, taking little sips at a time.

Hayat الياقوت

أجمل ما في هذا الكتاب هو المقدمة التي كتبها المترجم د. ثروت عكاشة والتي تناهز المئة صفحة.فيها ذكر سيرة جبران، وقد انبهرت بكثير من الحقائق التي ذكرها خاصة علاقته بـ"ماري هاسكل".ومن الأمور المفيدة في المقدمة تحليله حول فكر جبران وعقيدته، وكيف أنه أقرب إلى الصوفية والإيمان بوحودة الوجود والحلول من أي شيء آخر. وأيضا من تبيانه أنه ثمة تناص في الشكل على الأقل بين ما كتبه جبران وبين ما كتبه نيتشه.كتب "النبي" أصلا بالإنكليزية، ولم يترجمه جبران إلى العربية. ترجمة د. عكاشة بليغة جدا وفيها روح أدبية رائعة لم تجعلني أشعر أني إزاء نص مترجم نهائيا.ميزة هذه النسخة التي أصدرتها دار الشروق هي وضع الترجمة العربية والنص الإنكليزي جنبا إلى جنبا في صفحتين متقابلتين، مما يسهل المقارنة لمن أراد ذلك.لم يعجبني متن كتاب "النبي" كثيرا، فيه رومانسية وتمذهب للطبيعة وللمثالي غير القابل للتطبيق بشكل لا يمكني تجرعه. لا أزال لا أفهم من يقدسون هذا الكتاب. ربما لو قرأته في مرحلة المراهقة، لكان بإمكاني الاندماج في روحه أكثر.أتساءل، هل "ألمطرا" من المطر؟ أم لها علاقة بالأمومة ومأخوذة من كلمة Mater؟تحديث:قرأت للتو أن د. ثروت عكاشة توفي أمس! رحمه الله.

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