Maggie H is a Global Explorer and Wellness Guru from Hong Kong. Among many spiritual endeavors, Maggie practices and leads Qigong meditation to help people around the world find their inner balance. Find out more about this and other Eastern Philosophy & Meditation practices every Monday on the ICBRKR blog.

The Reef by Gray Malin

This is a story from The Tathāgatagarbha Sutra (如來藏經, Rulai Tripitaka).

Many treasures were buried, hidden in the basement cave of the poor woman. She was completely oblivious of these treasures because nobody ever told her about them, and none of her family members knew about it; so, she was struggling to get by.

One day, a traveller passing through the village looked around her old house and said, “Even though your big old house is falling apart, your family must have been very wealthy in your grandparents' generation.” The poor woman answered, “My grandparents used to be the wealthiest family in town, but alas, the family's fortune went downhill in my parents' generation. Now, we are only left with rotting pillars that barely keep the roof of the house and we are ragged and starved.” The traveller asked the poor woman if he could search her house. She told him that it's an empty house and he can freely search it.

The traveller from far away was a wise man and he believed that a family that was the wealthiest for hundreds of years could not now be left with nothing. He searched around the big old house with a stick and reached where the old rice storage used to be. He tapped the crumbling floor with his stick and heard an echo. He immediately started to dig the area where he heard the echo with a shovel and a hoe, and he found a solid stone cave. Inside the cave, tons of gold, silver and precious treasures were hidden! Surprised, he called the woman and showed her the hidden treasures. The woman was exhilarated to have found the family treasures and was profoundly thankful to him, and respected him as if he were her parent.

People come to me for help when they feel ragged and starved. Their biggest fear is always the worst-case scenario of unrecoverable failure, such as being homeless and being socially disgraced. Typically, by then, they are ready to abandon the big old house and go somewhere else to look for the treasure they have heard of.

Spiritually, the hidden treasure is your bright consciousness that is already enlightened and perfectly balanced. All you need to do is remove the debris in the big old house and the treasure will naturally appear. You were never poor and you will never be as long as you search inside your big old house. The bright consciousness will guide you to the best possible answers so that you can fulfill your purpose in this lifetime. Practically, the treasure also works as a means to feed and clothe yourself comfortably.

I have been there, literally one step away from being homeless, and I have also met a couple of people who once were homeless for a period of time. One thing we had in common was that we had abandoned the big old house and wandered around everywhere else to look for the treasure. The struggle stopped as soon as we came home and started removing the debris.

Peace of mind and worldly comfort are not two different things. Once you achieve peace of mind, the worldly comfort will naturally follow. So, if you feel tired of wandering around, sit down quietly and observe your breaths in and out through your nostrils; it doesn't matter whether it's fast, slow, or irregular. The next thing you will realize is that all the debris has been removed, and your breaths will take you to the cave where the bright light from the treasure shines.

Maggie H is a Life Cartographer, Eastern philosopher, Qigong master, Buddhist and Taoist meditator, Feng Shui practitioner, and researcher of Buddhist scriptures. She lives in Hong Kong, and regularly travels to both India and South Korea to further her spiritual growth and development. Her lifelong motto is: "benefit to all humankind."


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