Some time around the 13th and 14th century it is believed that the world's largest solid gold Buddha was created in Sukhothai and then moved to Ayutthaya. It is told that around 300 years ago word got out that the Burmese army was moving in to invade Thailand wiping out everything and killing everyone along its path. The Siamese monks who worshipped the Gold Buddha not for its monetary value but for what it represented, decided to mask the Buddha covering it with a thick layer of clay to downplay and hide its value. Although all the monks were killed, their plan worked and the Gold Buddha now hidden and covered in clay was overlooked and ignored. The truth of the Gold Buddha was lost with the death of the monks.
Not until 1954 when changes were being made with building structures in Thailand, did the truth reveal itself again. While attempting to relocate the giant Buddha by lifting it with a crane, cracks were made in the clay. The monks concerned with damaging the Buddha let it sit for the night while they contemplated how they were going to move the Buddha. Rains came so they covered the Buddha with a tarp. That evening one of the monks went to check on the Buddha to make sure it was staying dry. He took his flashlight to check out the Buddha and noticed shimmers of light reflecting back at him. He noticed the cracks and that there was more to reveal underneath the layers of clay. He took a chisel to the buddha chipping away at the clay revealing the true essence of the Buddha, solid gold.
Just like the truth, value and essence of the Buddha was covered up with clay to be protected from invasion, we cover our true nature, our true gold, masking ourselves and covering ourselves up in order to survive and belong in our environments and with the people around us. From an early age we begin to cover ourselves up to please others, to conform to our parent's desires, our teacher's orders, society's limitations and government demands or anything or anyone who seems to threaten our truth, our gold.
We then forget about the layers we have put on ourselves and our true rich nature remains hidden, even from ourselves. It is not until we are shaken up, when we are "moved", that cracks begin to appear letting our light shine through, revealing who we really are. Once we remember our light, our gold, we cannot help but to continually remove the layers we have masked ourselves with in order to get back to our true essence and the wealth and magnificence of all that we are.
"There is a crack in everything, that is how the light gets in." Leonard Cohen
By unmasking ourselves we gain the freedom to celebrate all of ourselves and remember our true nature and our true value. When we reveal our true selves we are able to see the unique gift we are and the unique gifts we have to bring to the world.
The gold is hidden in the dark, my friends. Bring it to the light!
Here is a clip from the movie Finding Joe about the Story of the Golden Buddha and its place in the Hero's Journey.