Life lessons have been taught for thousands of years through the art of storytelling. In fact, storytelling is an integral element in many areas of our lives. Whether it’s in our personal or professional lives, weaving a good story captures attention like no other art form. And there’s nothing quite like short stories that make you think.
With this kind of power, it’s important that the message you’re trying to convey is a good one. Fables and parables are created to teach strong ethics and morals. They allow us to examine ourselves and how we react to the world around us.
Below are 3 such short stories. Let them question the way you think and let us know your thoughts in the comments.
3 Short Stories That Make You Think
1) An Eagle Amongst Chickens
Once upon a time, on a large mountainside, an eagle nes satt with 4 large eagle eggs inside.
One day, an earthquake rocked the mountain causing one of the eggs to roll down to a chicken farm, located in the valley below.
The chickens knew that they must protect the eagle egg. Eventually, the eagle egg hatched and a beautiful eagle was born.
Being chickens, the chickens raised the eagle to be a chicken. The eagle loved his home and family but it seemed his spirit cried out for more.
One day, the eagle looked to the skies above and noticed a group of mighty eagles soaring. “Oh,” the eagle cried, “I wish I could soar like those birds.”
The chickens roared with laughter, “You cannot soar like those. You are a chicken and chickens do not soar.” The eagle continued staring at his real family up above, dreaming that he could be like them.
Each time the eagle talked about his dreams, he was told it couldn’t be done.
That was what the eagle learned to believe. After some time the eagle stopped dreaming and continued to live his life as a chicken.
Finally, after a long life as a chicken, the eagle passed away.
This is a powerful story and one I hope resonates with you. The only person who can set your own limitations is you. Unfortunately, there are many times in life when we set our eyes on something, dare to dream, but don’t move forward because of the fear and judgment of others.
We are conditioned from a young age to expect a certain path in life. When we deviate from this path, it’s not long before others who haven’t start throwing their opinions into the mix. As social creatures, it’s understandable that we react to other people’s opinions of us, but it’s essential to understand the reasoning behind it.
A lot of people don’t deviate because of their own fears. Fear of failing, fear of judgment, fear of not fitting in. But how would we ever advance if everyone ‘stayed in their own lane’. We need people who are brave enough to reach new frontiers, to change the norm, and carve their own path through this world. If you take one thing from this story, remember:
You will become what you believe you are.
2) It is Always Darkest Before the Dawn
There was once a man who was ship-wrecked and stranded on an island. Every day he prayed to ask God to send someone to rescue him, but to his disappointment, no one ever came.
Months passed and this man learned how to survive on the island. During this time, he accumulated things from the island and stored them in a hut that he constructed. One day after hunting for food and returning back to his hut, much to his dismay he saw that his hut was on fire along with everything else he owned!
All of his possessions were going up in smoke! The only thing he had left was the clothes on his back. Initially, he was in shock, and then he was consumed with anger and rage!
In his fury, he threw a fist into the air and began cursing God and yelling, “God, how could you let this happen to me? I’ve been praying every day for months about being rescued and no one has come, and now everything that I have is on fire! How could you do to this to me! Why did you let this happen?”
Later the man was on his hands and knees weeping heavily when he happened to look up and catch sight of a ship coming in his direction. The man was rescued and as they were heading back to civilization the man asked the captain, “How were you able to find me?”
The captain responded, “We were voyaging across the ocean when we noticed on the horizon a column of smoke going up. We decided to go check it out and when we did, that’s when we found you!”
Life is a series of obstacles and struggles we overcome in order to learn and grow. Remember, each incarnation is done in order for us to learn important life lessons. The most significant growth will always come when overcoming difficulty.
This is hard to see at the time. When we go through a situation that causes us hardship, it feels unfair, too much, and that the universe is targeting you in a way you don’t see with other people.
While this may seem the case, each of us deals with our own battles, but it’s up to you to learn the lesson and become stronger because of it. While you can’t control certain things that happen to you, you can certainly control how you react. Understanding this is powerful and gives you the strength to move forward.
In hindsight, we see that our most difficult times have allowed us to become much stronger people.
3) The Taste of Pain
Once an unhappy young man came to an old master and told him he had a very sad life and asked for a solution.
The old Master instructed the unhappy young man to put a handful of salt in a glass of water and then to drink it.
“How does it taste?” – the Master asked.
“Terrible.” – spat the apprentice.
The Master chuckled and then asked the young man to take another handful of salt and put it in the lake. The two walked in silence to the nearby lake and when the apprentice swirled his handful of salt into the lake.
The old man said, “Now drink from the lake.”
As the water dripped down the young man’s chin, the Master asked, “How does it taste?”
“Good!” – remarked the apprentice.
“Do you taste the salt?” – asked the Master.
“No.” – said the young man.
The Master sat beside this troubled young man, took his hands, and said, “The pain of life is pure salt; no more, no less. The amount of pain in life remains the same, exactly the same. But the amount we taste the ‘pain’ depends on the container we put it into. So when you are in pain, the only thing you can do is to enlarge your sense of things. Stop being a glass. Become a lake.”
These three stories might not be the happiest in tone, but understanding them does lead to a much happier life. Pain is an unavoidable part of it but when we bury it inside, it festers and consumes, stopping us from feeling the more positive emotions in the world.
Remember, each painful situation is a lesson. It’s ok to feel it while we process what has happened but it’s important to learn what you need to from it and then let it go. Carrying it with us isn’t productive and although it feels like the hardest thing to do, understanding and acceptance makes the situation much easier to deal with.
Learn what you need to, forgive what needs to be forgiven, let the pain go, and move forward into better times.
Learn to Let go of Pain