The Jeweler in Goa

[Listen to Asha read this story]

The jeweler and the tailor shared the same small shop, a common arrangement in Goa, India. Both were energetic young men, avid salesmen, eager to make a success of their modest enterprises. A friend had to make a brief visit to the tailor and Swamiji went along. He sat down near the jewelry case and began chatting with the jeweler.

Swamiji mentioned that he lives in New Delhi, is a disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda, and has a daily television show. Beyond those few facts, however, their conversation was mundane: the weather, the state of the economy—that kind of thing. The jeweler pulled a few of his favorite pieces out of the case to show Swamiji. Swamiji showed him the gems in his astrological bangle. The whole visit lasted less than ten minutes.

A few days later, the friend returned to the shop. The jeweler said, “Who is that man? I think he is the most spiritual person I have ever met! Many people, including swamis, come into this shop. Most are puffed up with their own importance. But he related to me simply as a friend. I just talked to him of ordinary things, but never have I met someone so wise, so kind, so humble. You see me. I am just a worldly man. I do not meditate. I smoke cigarettes. I have many desires. But I feel blessed to have been with such a man even for a few minutes.”

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