Shopping for Oranges - Knowing the Person Behind the Skin

by GEM Magazine / Jul 27, 2015 / Comments

I love oranges; the fresh pulp, the fact they are rich in vitamin C and the association they carry with my favourite time of year… summer. However oranges are not cheap, so like anyone, I look around the fresh produce aisle and try to get the best price.

Unfortunately, I become easily confused by the multiple fruits that seem to wear the cloak of oranges, so inevitably I buy tangerines or some other variety that doesn’t taste the same.

From time to time I’ll rummaged through the bins of fruits trying to find the best value orange, in doing so, I have realized the only way to tell the difference between varieties is to taste the inside. I’m wanting to experience that delicious orange taste and the outside appearance really isn’t important to me.

So how do I do this?

I found that if you don’t want to destroy the fruit, you can start applying some subtle pressure by squeezing your hand around the fruit. Ever so slightly the juice will start to perspire from the skin, and by tasting that juice seeping through the skin, I can be certain of the quality it bares inside.

And isn’t this also true of people? Most people have a great outside skin, they present well, and they are generally friendly. And they can go to great lengths to explain about some of the incredible things they are contributing to the world.

Instinctively we know not everyone can be great and we know not everyone’s outside appearance is who they truly are.

So how do we get to know people and understand who they really are?

Just like shopping for oranges, we will see what happens when pressure is applied. Once this pressure is applied, slowly but surely, whatever is inside that person will start to seep through the skin.

When we watch someone under pressure, what we are really watching is their true nature, their inside manifesting outwardly.

We often see people, who on the surface are calm, collected and charitable, then when suddenly faced with pressure become angry, bitter and vengeful. That’s unfortunately in many cases their true nature, but we weren't aware because we were looking at the skin.

The same can be true of the 'oranges' in life, those special people who can add incredible value to your life. Like everyone else they seem great on the outside, and when pressure is applied they remain cool, collected and compassionate. That’s who they truly are.

I don’t know many people who really enjoy pressure, however without it, we go through life not understanding the true nature of others or more importantly, ourselves.

I challenge you next time you are looking to bring someone into your life, to ask yourself; while they may look like an orange, what are they really like on the inside?

By Bradley Hughes.

Following the traditional path, Brad worked his way up the corporate ladder. Unfulfilled with the superficial success, he went looking for answers. Now a Zen Buddhist, devoted to sharing his distinct message via YouTube, he is now living his true purpose. Brad visits the beach daily, meditates and loves to explore the furthest reaches of the human mind. Brad is also the author of Zen in the City.

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