The Gift

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$95
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While traveling the world Akiane met Keru. He did not seem to be distinguished in any way, and he was known to just a few people who happened to live nearby. Keru grew up in a large extended family who lived in one the most affluent estates in Asia, complete with manicured gardens and security guards. His wealthy family employed over thirty servants including a full-time nurse and a doctor. Not allowed to do any physical work, each child was assigned two servants who watched over them round-the-clock inside the gated palace. During the school time Keru’s personal tutor had to sit on the floor beside his desk just in case he wanted anything. The boy’s main responsibility was only to study, so one day he would expand his family’s fortune and power. Life of indulgence and status surrounded the young boy every single day. The servants catered to Keru’s every whim, but were also in charge of protecting him from all life’s challenges. That’s why they strictly forbade the boy to touch the animals, to take care of himself, or to play outside the palace gates, the things he wanted more than anything in his life. Over time the boy grew more and more lonely, and when Keru grew up he became totally disillusioned with the decadence of the privileged life, and one day he decided to leave the palace… Beyond the gates it wasn’t the poverty that shocked Keru the most, it was the poor who were much happier than he was.  After several days of wondering through the city slums and then the rainforest, for the first time, he had to survive on his own. But Keru could not turn back. In the pristine rainforest sanctuary, he was finally home. He felt welcome. The simple living was changing like a stream— it was interactive, unpredictable and alive. Many years of hardships passed by, and Keru did find what he had been searching for—real harmony and real dignity. He started a new family and cherished every moment with them. Keru was finally free to give and to experience life to the fullest. He felt the scorching sun and the torrential rain. He made his own pots from clay. He built his own house from the very ground up. He cultivated land, grew and prepared his own food, and cared for his farm animals with deepest care and gratitude.  For Keru no amount of wealth could be compared to the priceless treasure of belonging and freedom to grow.
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