Today what I have for you is a story I read for the first time in one of my favorite books, Journey to the Heart by Osho, and which I read it again in Jorge Boukai’s book, I will Tell You a Story. I find it relevant to my video “What story do you tell yourself?”. The story does not have just one but two bottom lines: the first one is that you should not seek validation from people who do not know your true worth and the secondary one is that you shouldn’t judge if you don’t have enough knowledge on a subject/person.
The value of the “ring”
Once upon a time, a young man went to visit a great spiritual master seeking his help.
“I came, master, because I feel so insignificant that I have no desire to do anything. People tell me that I am worthless, that I cannot do anything right. What can I do to be more appreciated? ”
The master calmly told him:
“I’m sorry, I can’t help you right now because I have a problem of my own. Can you help me? If I solve my problem quickly then I may be able to help you. “
“Of course!” said the young man, trying to hide his frustration that once again he felt insignificant and not worthy of the master’s time.
The master took off a ring he was wearing and gave it to the young man, saying: “Go to the market to sell it so I can pay off a debt. Try to sell it for as much as you can. In any case, do not accept less than one gold coin. Go now and come back with the gold coin as fast as you can. ”
As soon as the young man arrived at the market he showed the ring to all the merchants. They were interested until they heard the price. A gold coin … Others laughed at him, others turned their backs on him, and only one old merchant was kind enough to bother explaining to him that a gold coin was too high a price for that ring. He offered to give him a silver coin instead.
After trying to sell the ring to literally every person he saw at the market, he returned to the master feeling disappointed.
“Master, I’m sorry. It was impossible for me to sell it for a gold coin. Maybe I could get a silver coin. You see, I couldn’t fool anyone on the real value of the ring.”
“I am going to ask you to remember what you just told me.” The master said. “It’s very important! You’re right! We must first find out the true value of the ring. Take it to the jeweller, tell him you want to sell it and ask him how much I can get for it. But don’t sell it to him whatever he offers you. Come back with the ring.”
When the young man arrived at the jeweller’s, he examined the ring in the candle light, looked at it with his magnifying lens, weighed it and then said to the young man:
“Tell your master, boy, that if he wants to sell it right away, I can’t offer him more than fifty-eight gold coins for his ring.”
“Fifty-eight gold coins?” The young man exclaimed.
“Yes”replied the jeweller. “Of course, if we had more time, we could get around seventy gold coins for it, but if it’s urgent …”
The young man ran to the master’s house to tell him everything.
When the master heard what the young man told him, he said, “You are like this ring. ‘A precious and unique jewel. And as such, only a true expert can see your value. Why do you run around asking people who know nothing about your true nature to appreciate your true worth? ”
And with these words, he put the ring back on his little finger. The lesson was over…