THE GOLDEN CITY speaks to the power that comes from helping people see a better future. Where could you offer a new way of looking at things?
There once was a city in the desert that had a fabled history, but no longer. At the time when the old king died and the city passed into the hands of his son, the prince, it was no longer that fabled city of old, but a hard and ragged place. The once beautiful buildings had fallen into disrepair, the people had become poor and the merchants who came into town preyed upon them. growing richer as the population grew poorer.
The new king wondered what he should do. He turned to his advisors who had many things to say about what could be done, but no real answers. He turned to the noble families of the place, but found them also unequal to the task. He consulted the wise people of the city and beyond, he consulted the oracles and the soothsayers. He sent runners into the desert to visit far lands and bring back what wisdom they could. After many months, he finally he turned to his own heart and there he found the answer.
The next morning when the people awoke, they were surprised to find that the central shrine of the city was now covered with cloths and roped off from view. Over the coming months people were seen to move in and out of this place. There was the sound of building and the look of change. There were materials going in and out. There was obviously something happening in the building, but no one knew what it was. Everyone grew more and more curious.
Finally it came to a time when the building was once again unveiled, and although people could move inside the building, at one end there was a huge screen hiding something behind it. This part was roped off. Curiosity rose to a fever pitch.
Then it was announced that the visiting merchants were called to an audience with the king. People heard that they were invited to enter the building a view what was behind the screen, but that they must also vow never to reveal what they had seen otherwise they could never again enter the city. A crowd gathered to watch them enter and, an hour later, emerge with looks of wonder on their faces. But none of them ever spoke of what they had seen.
What was in there? What had they seen? Soon the advisors and the noble families clamoured to be allowed to see what had been shown to the merchants. They too emerged with wonder on their faces. And in their turn, none of them ever spoke of what they had seen.
And finally the ordinary citizens also demanded to see what was behind the screen. They wanted to know the mystery. And so they were allowed in. They too emerged with wonder on their faces and never spoke of what they had seen, but slowly things began to change.
That once fallen city began to rebuild. Where there was hardness, there was now kindness and caring. People began to work harder, to dream more, and to treat each other with new respect. Slowly buy surely the city returned to its fabled reputation and the flood of people coming to see it brought wealth and prosperity with them.
What was the magic? What had the people seen?
Behind the screen, in a relief made of purest gold, the king had had a picture of vision of the perfect city made. The Golden City gleamed its magic into every heart and mind and the people made it so.