Lessons We Can Learn From The Greek Poem Ithaca


As you set out for Ithaca
Hope your road is a long one,
full of adventure, full of discovery.

Laistrygonians, Cyclops,
angry Poseidon—don’t be afraid of them:
you’ll never find things like that on your way
as long as you keep your thoughts raised high,
as long as a rare excitement
stirs your spirit and your body.
Laistrygonians, Cyclops,
wild Poseidon—you won’t encounter them
unless you bring them along inside your soul,
unless your soul sets them up in front of you.
Hope your road is a long one.
May there be many summer mornings when,
with what pleasure, what joy,
you enter harbors you’re seeing for the first time;
may you stop at Phoenician trading stations
to buy fine things,
mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
sensual perfume of every kind—
as many sensual perfumes as you can;
and may you visit many Egyptian cities
to learn and go on learning from their scholars.
Keep Ithaca always in your mind.
Arriving there is what you’re destined for.
But don’t hurry the journey at all.
Better if it lasts for years,
so you’re old by the time you reach the island,
wealthy with all you’ve gained on the way,
not expecting Ithaca to make you rich.
Ithaca gave you the marvelous journey.
Without her you wouldn’t have set out.
She has nothing left to give you now.
And if you find her poor, Ithaca won’t have fooled you.
Wise as you will have become, so full of experience,
you’ll have understood by then what these Ithacans mean.
Beautiful Poem isn’t it? it was written by Constantine P. Cavafy.

What life & spiritual lessons can we learn from this poem?

It is in the journey that we gain our treasures, not the destination. The destination is what gets us to experience & learn everything the journey has to offer. So when we want to hurry & rush our journey, we should instead hope that it is long & full of lessons. Because if we do end up getting to where we wanted to be, we won’t be disappointed if it wasn’t what we wanted because we are way better off than we would’ve been had we not embarked on the journey.
The wisest thing we can do is ask GOD to have HIS way in everything & to teach us everything HE wants us to learn from our life experiences. For it is this that is our purpose, not achieving success, or collecting awards & trophies. Our purpose is to experience life with GOD & to develop our relationship with HIM.

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