All that Glitters is not Gold – A Story about MAYA
All that Glitters is not Gold – A Story about MAYA this story describes that Once upon a time, when a queen was taking a bath, a crow took her valuable necklace and flew away. She became annoyed and told the king that she wanted the necklace back. The king was ready to get her a new one, but she demanded that she wanted only the old one at any cost. The king made an announcement that although the necklace cost only a lakh of rupees, he was ready to offer a gift of five lakh rupees to anyone who Would bring him the lost necklace. All the citizens started frantically searching for the lost necklace in all corners of the country.
A man had been near a pond all day, struggling all alone, to reach out and touch an object in the pond. A sage passing by asked him what his problem was. The man with great reluctance spoke out, “Sir, I am going to request you to help me solve a problem. But if you agree to take only one fifth the profit that I will get after solving the problem, then I will tell you my problem.” The sage smiled and said, “I need no profit. Tell me how can I help you.” The man showed the sage the necklace of the queen glowing in sunlight inside the pond and told the sage, “At last, after a month of searching, I found the queen’s necklace here. Since morning I am trying to extract it from the water; but with a fishing rod, or stick or my own hand, the necklace is not coming out. What to do? Do you have any idea?”
The sage stared at the necklace in the water for a while and smiled deeply. Then he took the man a little distance and pointed to him the top of the tree – the necklace hung on a branch of the tree. The man jumped in excitement, at once climbed up the tree, picked up the necklace, came down and fell at the feet of the sage. The sage told him, “My dear son, all that glitters is not gold. The necklace in the water was glittering although it was simply a perverted reflection. The real necklace was on the top of the tree. Similarly, Maya is glittering although it is simply a perverted reflection of the spiritual world. The real world is the spiritual world where the Lord and His devotees in their real beauty exist eternally performing unlimited pastimes.”
The man was amazed to hear this. The sage further continued, “The material world is like the reflection of the necklace in the water. Thus all glittering Maya’s attractions of the material world cannot give tangible happiness. Those who hanker after flickering material pleasures like wealth/gold, land/property, woman/man, position or possessions to get enjoyment without reference to God, are like the foolish animal chasing a mirage in a desert.” This was a great revelation to the man. Although the man got the five lakhs prize from the king, still he surrendered to the sage and became his disciple. He considered the knowledge given by the sage to be more valuable than the wealth he acquired as a reward.
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