The Gem Within ‘Richard Jewell’

Being unenlightened, none of us are perfect all the time, be it in the past or present. After all, we are mixed bags, with pure gold but embedded in ore, that requires further refinement. Despite this, it is still possible to be as good as possible in the moment, not just for ourselves, but for others — to perhaps shine a glimmer of gold, by being heroic, doing the right thing in the nick of time. Somewhat reflected in his name, Jewell seems to represent such a ‘diamond in the rough’ — but are we all, men and women on the street, not too, to varying degrees?

As a whistleblower of sorts to a bomb scare, who helped to disperse a crowd while risking his own life, he is celebrated at first. But when the one who planted the bomb is at large, his initiative and enthusiasm makes him prime ‘suspect’ as the perpetrator. The very ones too quick to deify can also be those too quick to demonise with conspiracy theories. When the media reports on speculation and speculates further, even the masses can be mobilised to turn upon an ordinary person who happened to do something extraordinary for the same masses.

Such is the terror of baseless speculation, with barely circumstantial yet no damning evidence. The truth is, to demonise others is to demonise oneself and the truth itself. Risks increase, of a fair trial becoming a trial by media. The world is not so black or white. In that black is some whiteness, and it that white is some blackness. What seems too good to be true might be false, yet sometimes true. All should look deeper. Perhaps the key food for thought is this question… If you are Jewell who spots the next potential bomb, will you quickly shoo people off… or just walk off? Listen to your Buddha-nature, your gem within!

Please Be Mindful Of Your Speech, Namo Amituofo!

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