January 28, 2006

Story Time Saturday

                         The Jewel

 long ago a wise old man was speaking to a student. The old man was a teacher. This was no ordinary student nor was he an ordinary teacher. For many years the wise old man had been giving guidance, mentoring and advice to his student. One day the teacher informed the student that he was leaving to a far away country and would not return for more than a year. They never said goodbye, they always said they would see each other later. They stayed in touch daily. The student tried to keep the teachers spirits up since he was constantly surrounded by chaos and danger. 

Eventually the teacher returned safely. He was grateful that the student took time every day to stay in touch and help keep him centered while away. The teacher in appreciation wanted to share a story with the student. 

The teacher began to speak about a jewel, the most precious jewel to be seen or possessed. He explained that many people wanted this jewel, how it had been taken by someone who wanted to own it more than anything else. Years passed then one day the current owner tried to have the jewel appraised. He went to different jeweler's who gave him different opinions as to the real worth of this jewel. After searching for and not finding what he wanted to hear, he finally gave up and stored the jewel away in a drawer. He seldom took it out thus never took much care of it.

One day while looking for something he opened the drawer and saw the jewel he had so desperately wanted a long time ago. It was still sitting in the same exact place he had left it. He decided he didn't want it anymore so he set out to sell it. Everyone he approached told him they could not afford such an exquisite piece. They all suggested that he should keep such a marvel. However, he was persistent about selling it since he didn't care for it any longer. Eventually he met someone who was interested in the jewel. By now he was tired and impatient. All he said to the potential buyer was, "I will sell you this jewel for the amount it was appraised for by the last jeweler." The interested buyer immediately agreed without even hearing the amount. After the transaction had been completed he was asked why he agreed to such a grand purchase without first knowing the price? The new owner replied, "A jewel whether it is given value or not, will always be a precious gem for that is its nature. The price is not important what is important is the jewel itself."

The student, after hearing this story, realized that the teacher was not speaking of a jewel but instead was speaking of her. The story opened her eyes as it spoke of how she should value herself even if no one else didn't or hadn't done so. She asked the teacher why he decided to share the story with her now after all these years? He explained how he had seen her grow into the woman she is today. That he has seen her suffer, that throughout her ordeals he knew her beauty was never limited to her exterior. That she arrived unsure of her value when all along all she had to do was pull herself out of where she allowed herself to be placed plus not wait for others to value her. The student then asked how to go about this and he simply answered, "Live peacefully within your mind, love passionately with all your heart, stay true to what you believe and stop compromising the rest of your life away. Let your instincts guide you for they will tell you which path to follow, which path to create, how much to give and how little to take."

Before she left, she turned to him and asked him one more question, "What do I do if I can not give what is asked of me?" He replied in the same reassuring manner, "Give as much as you can. The rest they'll have to resolve on their own. If you lose them in the process, then they didn't value you as much as they should have in the first place. If you don't lose them then you must treasure them for they too are precious."

As the student arrived home she thought about everything the teacher had told her that day. She knew her life had changed the moment she became aware of what she needed to do for herself. She asked herself important questions before turning in for the evening. She wondered if she could honor or treasure what she convincingly believed was never truly hers. To value is to love. This precious gift of love, she had believed, was meant to be given and to keep it would be selfish. Now it was time for her to accept she must experience for herself what she gave to others whether they reciprocated or not. There's nothing more precious than love that she could give herself.  Those were her last thoughts before she slowly closed her eyes to safely drift away in her dreams.

edited 9/2015 & 10/2008
Originally posted 1/28/2006


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