In 1957, a group of monks had to relocate a clay Buddha from their temple to a new location. The monastery was being relocated to make room for the development of a new highway through Bangkok.

When the Crane began to lift the clay Buddha, the weight of it was so heavy that it began to crack. To make things worse, it also began to rain.

The head monk was concerned about damaging the Buddha. He lowered the statue back down to the ground and covered it with a large canvas to protect it from the rain. Later that evening, he went back to check on the Buddha. He shined a flashlight under the canvas to see if the Buddha was staying dry. As the light shown the crack in the statue, he noticed a light shining back. He decided to take a closer look at this gleam of light, and wondered whether there was anything underneath the clay.

He got a chisel and hammer, and began chipping away at the clay. As he knocked off the clay, the gleam grew brighter and bigger. After chipping away for many hours, the monk finally stood before an extraordinary solid gold Buddha.

Several hundred years before, the golden Buddha had been covered in clay to keep this precious treasure from being stolen by the Burmese soldiers. Although the Burmese killed many Monks during that time, the secret of their golden Buddha remained intact until 1957.


Like the Golden Buddha, many of us have allowed the gold within us to be covered by a layer of fear and other factors. This outer shell will not allow us to shine, which keeps the beauty within us trapped and hidden.

Somewhere between the ages of two and nine, we begin to cover up our golden essence.  We develop low self-esteem because of the negative things we experience, and the negative associations we have with people.

Like the Monk, we must chip away at our “clay” covering of low self-esteem so that we can discover our true essence again.