Sometimes, even in my dreams, I’m talking to people, and sometimes I wake up, remember the dream, and write it down. This is a story I dreamed about.
There were three brothers—all very, very poor. They decided to sell whatever they had and buy some gold. And each one knew that this gold could give them everything they wanted. It could make them rich and give them nice clothes, food, a house—everything.
So they got the gold, and each made a little hut for himself far, far away. One was a very religious man. He put the gold on the altar, and every day he prayed to it, “Oh, please, gold, make me rich. Give me food and a house and new clothes.” And he would write beautiful prayers and sing beautiful songs: “Gold is everything. Gold, you will make me rich.”
The second one also made an altar, but it wasn’t called an altar. He was scientific, and so it was called “a display.” He would display the gold and write essays. He wasn’t religious, but he also prayed in his own way, “Oh, gold, you have the potential to remove my hunger, give me a house, give me new clothes, give me food.”
The third one sold the gold. In the opinion of the first brother, he would be sacrilegious. To the second one, he would be very impractical, very unscientific. To get rid of the very source? Very bad. But, anyway, he sold the gold. With the money he got, he bought a farm, plowed a field, raised vegetables, grew fruit. Whatever he needed, he ate, and whatever he didn’t need, he would sell in the market. With the money he made, he built a house, bought new clothes. And every season, he got more and more and more. Whatever he wanted to eat, he would. Whatever he didn’t, he’d sell. And he just kept getting richer and richer and richer.
After a few years had gone by, the three brothers decided to get together. The first one explained how he prayed to the gold every day, and one day the gold would answer his prayers. The second one, who was very scientific, said, “One day, this gold will fulfill everything that I have in my mind it can do. Its potential will come through.”
They both turned to the third one and said, “What do you do? You’re doing pretty well. You look bigger and have new clothes, a nice watch, nice shoes. What do you do?”
He was very shy and said, “Oh, well, I sold the gold. Out of that, I bought a farm. And, hey, come visit me! I’ve got a home, a beautiful orchard. I grow my vegetables and I’ll cook for you and give you some clothes.” And they said, “You sold the gold?”
Every time I think of this story, I find it to be deeper than I first realized. Those two couldn’t see the obvious—that what they were praying for had in fact happened for this brother. The only thing they could see was, “You sold the gold?!! You’re doomed now.” No. He wasn’t doomed. He had unlocked the potential of the gold and he has all that he needs.
You, too, have all that you need. It lies within you. Every day—even in sadness, in sorrow—there is a joy unparalleled inside of you waiting to be discovered. People think, “Does that mean that you don’t get upset?” Of course I get upset. But even when I am upset, I know that within me is unparalleled joy. Do bad things happen to me? Yes. Do good things happen to me? Yes. Am I any different from you? No. And if I am, it’s only one thing: In all that I do, I know that inside of me resides the One I have always sought; that when I feel lonely, I know that I am not alone; that when there is darkness outside, I know there is a lamp. I know. Not, “I think” or “I wish. . .” or “Wouldn’t it be nice. . .” No. “I know.”
The journey of being fulfilled is very simple. You. You have that whether you decide you want to experience it or not. Even if you decide you don’t want to experience it, you still have it. You have the possibility to be fulfilled. That is what the journey is all about. How do I know? I have felt it.