Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Precious Gems

A friend was showing me her collection of semi-precious stones today, and I was reminded of this short story that Paulo Coehlo shared in his recent blog (http://paulocoelhoblog.com/2011/02/12/the-stone/)

A wise woman who was traveling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream.

The next day she met another traveler who was hungry, and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food.The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him.

She did so without hesitation.

The traveler left, rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime.

But, a few days later, he came back to return the stone to the wise woman.“I’ve been thinking,” he said. “I know how valuable this stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious.

Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me this stone.”

I share this here because it sums up, nicely and neatly, what I was hoping to write about tonight. I am not sure who I admire most in the story, the wise woman, for giving so freely, or the traveler, who was able to recognize that within this wise woman was something more valueable than precious gems.

I only know this: We are always demonstrating to others what truly lies within us. But it is important to remember that we are also always being shown, by others, what truly lies within them.

And it's also important, as the traveler learned, to recognize something precious when it is handed to us.

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