I ran across this little story quoted in an academic paper while I was doing research for a writing project. It was written by Dorothy Gilman in a book called A Nun in the Closet. At any rate, I found it clever and thought you might as well. [I’m assuming that Gilman made this story up, rather than borrowing an old folktale–but that–as with all assumptions–could be wrong. Please feel free to correct me if you know otherwise. If she did come up with it from scratch, she perfectly captured the folktale.]
“Once upon a time, [Bhanjan Singh, a guru-like character in the book] said, when God had finished making the world, he wanted to leave behind Him for man a piece of His own divinity, a spark of His essence, a promise to man of what he could become, with effort. He looked for a place to hide this Godhead because, he explained, what man could find too easily would never be valued by him.
“Then you must hide the Godhead on the highest mountain peak on earth,” said one of His councilors.
God shook His head. “No, for man is an adventuresome creature and he will soon enough learn to climb the highest mountain peaks.”
“Hide it then, O Great One, in the depths of the earth!”
“I think not,” said God, “for man will one day discover that he can dig into the deepest parts of the earth.”
“In the middle of the ocean then, Master?”
God shook His head. “I’ve given man a brain, you see, and one day he’ll learn to build ships and cross the mightiest oceans.”
“Where then, Master?” cried His councilors.
God smiled. “I’ll hide it in the most inaccessible place of all, and the one place that man will never think to look for it. I’ll hide it deep inside of man himself.”