I may have mentioned that we really appreciate Bhativinoda Thakura. Here he gives the best description of the gold metaphor that I have found yet… (I am serious, this great personality produced amazing works.)
“The sages give a provincial analogy [an analogy that is not fully accurate but is like a place-holder until realization comes] from our experience of inert matter. Suppose you cut a small piece of gold from a large piece, and use it to make a bangle. From the perspective of the gold, the bangle is not different from the original piece of gold. However, from the perspective of the bangle, the two are different from each other. This example is not a completely correct representation of cit tattva , but it illustrates an important aspect: from the point of view of cit tattva , there is no difference between Īśvara and the jīva , whereas from the perspective of status and quantity, these two are eternally different.”
Jaiva-dharma: Our Eternal Nature – Srila Bhativinoda Thakura
The idea here is that from the perspective of God there is no difference between us, but that there is necessarily a difference – always – between us and God from our own individual perspective.