My friends and my road-fellows, pity the nation
that is full of beliefs and empty of religion.
“Pity the nation that wears a cloth it does not weave…
eats bread it does not harvest…
and drinks a wine that flows not from its own winepress.
“Pity the nation that acclaims the bully as a hero,
and that deems the glittering conqueror bountiful.
“Pity the nation that raises not its voice save when it
walks in a funeral, boasts not except among its ruins,
and will rebel not save when its neck is laid between
the sword and the block.
“Pity the nation whose statesman is a fox, whose
philosopher is a juggler, and whose art is the art of
patching and mimicking.
“Pity the nation that welcomes its new ruler with
trumpetings, and farewells him with hooting, only to
welcome another with trumpeting again.
“Pity the nation divided into fragments, each fragment
deeming itself a nation.”
by Kahlil Gibran