"Desiderata" written by Max Ehrmann

"Desiderata"

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible, without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even to the dull and ignorant;
they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexations to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain or bitter,
for always there will be greater
and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble,
it's a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs,
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Nurture strength of spirit
to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life,
keep peace in your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.



There is some mystery behind Desiderata's origin... many believe Max Ehrmann may not be the actual author. Despite the dispute I really like this poem!

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Desiderata History

Max Ehrmann, a poet and lawyer from Terre Haute, Indiana, wrote Desiderata in 1927. Meaning “things that are desired,” Ehrmann wrote it for himself, he said, “Because it counsels those virtues I felt most in need of.” These virtues have been valued by countless others as Desiderata rose in popularity in the late sixties and early seventies. It is making a strong comeback today, as parents and grandparents are passing along this wisdom to their loved ones.

The Desiderata history is an interesting one, as there has been confusion surrounding the origin of this poem. It is often mistaken that it was written by an anonymous author in 1692 and was found in Old Saint Paul’s Church. - via desiderata.com