There was a king who loved his people very much. He had many wise nobles as consuls. One day, he called all his wise nobles and asked them to pen down all their wisdom for the future generation. The wise nobles worked for a year and put forth all their knowledge in twelve volumes of a book. When the king saw their collective work, he said, ‘It is too big. Make it smaller.’
The wise nobles worked for another year and condensed their wisdom to just one volume and presented it to the king. The king again said, ‘It is too big. Make it smaller.’
So they worked for yet another year, and finally reduced the entire wisdom to one single page and presented it to the king. The king complimented them for their work, but said again, ‘Make it even smaller.’
Finally, the nobles reduced the entire wisdom to just one phrase and the king was extremely happy. He said, ‘That is what people can understand.’
The phrase read—‘There is no free lunch!’
Message: Be ready to pay the price for what you get in life.
Source: “Mastering Essay & Answer Writing for UPSC Civil Services IAS/ IPS & State PSC Main Exam” by Dr Awdhesh Singh, available at