There are many sham diamonds in this life which pass for real, and vise versa, many real diamonds which go unvalued.
It’s high praise to say that someone is “genuine—the real thing.” We use the image of jewelry when we talk about character: “Pure Gold—14 Karat
–rings true–a diamond of the first water–a pearl.” The quality of beauty and rarity makes gems precious to us, and by using the same language to describe people,
we imply that real personal worth is equally beautiful, and equally rare.
Yet it it’s within everyone’s grasp. We all agree on the valuable character traits: honesty, loyalty, openness, courage, humor, and the capacity for love.
Everyone has them, and everyone can have them. Imitations won’t do.
I needn’t worry about whether someone else’s qualities are genuine. I know what I admire and I have plenty to do polishing my own.