The Beauty Contest

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Story File



Main Lesson

Vanity provokes others to serve up some painful lessons on humility


A flower garden


A butterfly and a cockroach

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The Beauty Contest

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Short story of the vanid butterfly

Once, in a lovely garden, lived the most beautiful butterfly in the world. She was so pretty, and had won so many beauty contests, that she had become vain. So much so, that one day, the cheeky cockroach got fed up with her showing off, and decided to teach her a lesson.

She went to see the butterfly, and in front of everyone she told her that she wasn't really that beautiful, and that if the butterfly won contests it was because the jury had been bribed. In reality, the cockroach was the most beautiful.

The butterfly was furious, and with laughter and disdain told the cockroach, "I'll beat you in a beauty contest, with whichever jury you yourself choose."

"OK, I accept. See you on Saturday," answered the cockroach, without waiting for a reply.

That Saturday everyone went to the beauty contest, the butterfly arriving completely confident of victory until she saw who was on the jury panel: cockroaches, worms, beetles, and nits. All of the judges preferred the creepy-crawliness and bad smell of the cockroach, which easily won the contest.

The butterfly was left sobbing and humiliated, wanting never to enter another beauty contest in her life. Fortunately, the cockroach forgave the butterfly for her vanity, and they became friends. Some time later the butterfly even won the Humility Contest.

Average: 8.6 (39 votes)

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