I have them among the junk and treasures I have accumulated.
None of them is a reward for good behavior.
All of them are trinkets that someone else didn't want.
The gold band on my forefinger belongs to one of the boys who said I could use it. Steven gave them each one a few years back. The middle ring with the green stone is my fathers school ring which my mother gave me. The other two.. I forget where they came from.
The guys are not jewelry wearers.
Neither am generally, although I have some around and do wear it sometimes.
I justify this by the thought that if I were living in the woods or jungle I would likely pick up flowers and bits of feather or shell that caught my fancy and wear them.
Anyway when I wear them I think of "where did they come from? " How was the gold obtained? If I throw this ring out will that justify or negate the hard work and pain that went into making it?
Would I rather have the friendship of the miner who got this gold or would I rather have the gold?
I guess I'd have to choose the friendship.
One time I was in Reno waiting for the bus. I was sitting in the park down by the river eatin' peanut butter sandwiches. I had a loaf of bread and a jar of peanut butter, and when guys came by I'd make 'em a sandwich and hang out with them . One fella came by and I made him a sandwich and we shot the breeze. He said he was a gold miner up in Elko and that his wife was in the casino gambling. He was waiting for her, killing time.
We exchanged information about ourselves , had a few laughs.
The time came when the bus would be leaving and we prepared to go our ways. The guy pulls out a wad of 100's the size of a hamburger and asks me if I need any money. I said "not particularly" and we made our goodbyes.
And so it goes.
I guess another good side of relying on "within" is that you have great admiration and respect for anothers "within". And the experience itself is the reward. There is no need of the proverbial "gold star".