the Jewel Within

If there were a clump of gold buried in a yard, people would dig and dig until they found it, regardless of how deep it was. The original, infinite, absolute jewel buried within us is incomprehensibly more significant than the clump of gold in the yard. So we should try to find this incredible jewel within.

-Zen Master Song Cheol

I can’t look at this without thinking of the disasters in the world that are created by digging for the jewel in the yard. One by one, as we learn to shift our seeking inward, there will fewer and fewer holes to fill.

May we all find our jewel within together!

9 thoughts on “the Jewel Within”

  1. I am not sure that most disasters in the world were created by digging for jewel outside, I think the initial problem is procreation, which makes you go to dig in some yard, that is the original looking outward thing and from there everything else sprung up like branches.

    1. My words were not that “most disasters in the world were created by digging for jewel outside.”

      If you look again careful, I said, “the disasters in the world that are created by digging for the jewel in the yard.”

      Anyway, it was a metaphor, not to be taken literally, it could refer to anything, including procreation.

      thank you for your comment.

    1. Hah! Oh, good one Chong Go!:). I have dug and dug and come up with many smelly things so far in my life, sometimes I think I even roll in them (just like my dogs)! This is when I really know I have been looking outside! All good lessons for me, because if I never got stinky enough, then I wouldn’t know to go inward! 🙂

  2. Hi Tanya,

    In a sense you are right of course, that the whole cause of our problems is our desire to be born in samsara. But take a look at the title of the book on the sidebar here – there is no river to cross and no raft to find…. our escape from samsara is available right now.

    Thinking that we gain liberation through non-procreation is about as accurate as thinking we gain liberation through non-eating, or non-breathing, or non-loving.

    Speaking on behalf of those of us here that have children, I can honestly say that they provide not only the greatest joy in this life, but also great Dharma to match!

    The Buddha warned often of the dangers of nihilism Tanya, and the Zen Masters applied his message of love and understanding and peace to our everyday lives – lives in which all, parents and children, monks and laypeople, can all gain liberation right here and now.

    “Those who see worldly life as an obstacle to Dharma see no Dharma in everyday actions; they have not yet discovered that there are no everyday actions outside of Dharma.”
    – Dogen

    With palms together,


    1. OK, Marcus, your desire to protest my comments is so great, I think you missing the point of what I was trying to say. I also have a child and I am not nihilist, look deeper at what I said or if you find nothing deep there, just let it go, you don’t have to stick to every word I say like a velcro. And what’s with this separation on monks and lay people? And gaining liberation right here and now – ?? – if you can “gain” it just like that – let me know

      1. Do you not see what bothers us in others is also within ourselves??

        Please accept these as constructive replies to your comments.

        I’m concerned that there may be a slight language barrier leading to the many misunderstandings over the past weeks, but there has also been much unnecessary negativity, whether it be personal or general, and I find it difficult to understand why?

        I apologize if I offended you in any way.

      2. Hi Tanya,

        I apologise if my response to you has caused you any offence. I also apologise for misunderstanding your original comments.

        I still don’t understand what you meant, espcially when you said “I think the initial problem is procreation”, but you are right – I ought to have tried looking a little deeper or even just nicely asking you for clarification rather than arguing against you. Thank you for pointing that out.

        But, you know, it would be great if you’d tell us a little more about yourself! I didn’t know, for example, that you are a mother! Without some knowedge of each other’s lives we are just words on a screen and misunderstandings are thus sure to arise.

        As for the separation of monks and laypeople, my point was that both are equaly able to gain liberation – that there is no separation!

        And gaining liberation right here and now, well, that’s a huge topic. But yes, I feel it. I feel that I am, despite all my ignorance and ego-driven nonsense, held in the Buddha’s arms and that a part of me is connected forever to the Buddha. It’s not the full thing of course (I’m no Buddha!) but it’s certainly a taste and one that’s always available.

        Tanya, again, it’s great that you are here commenting and discussing these things. And I’m sorry if things got off on the wrong foot with you. But I’m sure we can put it right and all be friends!

        Wishing you great peace and happiness and my sincere apologies again,


  3. a friend, who is a singer and composer, has made a song about people who are not doing what they want to but what they have to do; and the only thing that comes to their mind to solve their problems is to play the lottery at the weekend…
    it ends up, “doch wir können es verändern, wenn wir wollen – es verändern” (we can change it, if we want – change it)

    what tool was it that Amy recommended us for digging out our inner jewel…?

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