Glisters is an old fashioned word that means “the quality of shining with a bright reflected light”. It means that all that is bright and shining is not gold. There is something called fool’s gold. This is something that to the initiated looks like gold but is actually a compound of iron and sulphur. It has quite different properties such as when it is hit it breaks because it is hard rather than bends because it is soft. It is found in the same areas and people have been led astray by it.
The same thing happens in other scenarios. Something may look good but it might not be all it is cracked up to be. So often, we say that something is too good to be true. We therefore learn to be wary. In fact, there are situations where we are specifically taught to be wary to protect ourselves such as staying safe online and stranger danger. We get phishing emails that try and encourage us to tell others the information that we use to access online bank accounts or do other things that will harm us.
We learn to be careful and listen to those we trust about what things we should accept or reject. Problem is even though we trust them to tell us the truth as they understand it, it would be surprising if they were able to tell us the whole truth and nothing but the truth. We can get into quite a tangle trying to think our way through that one.
Throwing the baby out with the bathwater
Sometimes there is something good hiding away amongst all the dirt and filth. This saying goes back to the time when bath night meant everyone took their turn one after another in the same bath of water. The last one to go in would be the baby and by then the water could be so dirty that they could be hidden by it. When the water was thrown out it was possible to find that the baby had been thrown out as well. The good that there was in the bath was hidden by all the dirty water.
Take care and check first
It can be very difficult working out what is hiding amongst the first or whether that thing that is attracting your attention is good as gold or just glistering like gold. However, it is possible to check where the baby is before throwing out the bathwater and there are checks that you can do to see if something is really gold. If you don’t do those checks you can find that you have what you don’t want or lose what you do want.