I’ll share this compassionate and guiding poem by Rumi:
The Public Bath
Imagine the phenomenal world as a furnace heating water for the public bath.
Some people carry baskets of dung to keep the furnace going. Call them materialists, energetic, fire-stoking citizens.
One of those brags how he’s collected and carried twenty dung baskets today, while his friend has brought six!
They think the counting up at nightfall is where truth lies. They love the smoke smell of dried dung, and how it blazes up like gold!
If you give them musk or any fragrance of soul intelligence, they find it unpleasant and turn away. Others sit in the hot bathwater and get clean. They use the world differently.
They love the feel of purity, and they have dust marks on their foreheads from bowing down.
They are separated by a wall from those who feed the fires, busy in the boiler room belittling each other. Sometimes, though, one of those leaves the furnace, takes off the burnt smelling rags, and sits in the cleansing water.
The mystery is how the obsessions of furnace stokers keep the bathwater of the others simmering perfectly.
They seem opposed, but they’re necessary to each other’s work: the proud piling up of fire worship, the humble disrobing and emptying out of purification.
As the sun dries wet dung to make it ready to heat water, so dazzling sparks fly from the burning filth.