5 Moral Lessons to Learn From the Story 'Jack and the Beanstalk'

Updated on February 8, 2017

Some Truth From a Fairytale

As a child, one of my favorite stories was "Jack and The Beanstalk." I viewed poor Jack as a child who was trying to do what was best for his family. Now that I am I older, I have revisited the story and have found that there are some important life lessons.

1. When Your Mother Sends You to the Market, Do What She Tells You

Jack had a simple task to do: take his cow to the market and sell it to get some money to buy his family food. But, he got taken in by a swift talking bean salesman. Moral of the story: Listen to your mother when she tells you to do something.

Of course, the story kind of works out for Jack. The beans get thrown out the window, and during the night while they slept, a great beanstalk rises up into the sky. In the morning, Jack wakes up and climbs the beanstalk. This brings me to my next life lesson.

2. Do Not Let Your Eyes Become Bigger Than Your Wallet

Jack lays his eyes on the giant's possessions (the harp, the gold coins, and the hen that lays the golden eggs) and he desires them. This simple act leads Jack down the wrong path.

3. What's Yours Is Yours, What's Theirs You Do Not Touch Without Permission

When all is said and done, Jack stole the harp, the gold coins, and the golden hen — items that did not belong to him. He then climbed down the bean stalk, chopped it down, and then let the giant fall to his doom. Of course, Jack and his mom lived happily ever after. But can we truthfully say that the giant got what he deserved? He was going to eat poor Jack, but wasn't the giant just protecting his possessions? This leads into next moral lesson.

4. If You Know It's Wrong Then It's Wrong — No Matter How Much You Justify What You're Doing

Jack saw a way to end his family's plight, but it was not the most honorable one. He could have held his head up high, admitted his mistake, and then sought out work to help support his mother and himself.

5. Last Life Lesson

In all fairness, there is a new politically correct version of "Jack and Beanstalk." In this story, Jack realizes how he has wronged the giant and seeks to right that wrong. He works out a deal with the giant in which he has visitation rights with the harp. In return, the giant gives Jack gold coins in order to help Jack and his mother survive. The new version of "Jack and the Beanstalk" leads me to my last life lesson: When everyone works together, more is accomplished.

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    • profile image

      KT 

      4 months ago

      Just got a copy of Jack and the Beanstalk and read it to my grandkids. It made perfect sense to me as a kid, but now through my adult understanding, just seems wrong of Jack! Looked it up to see if I was missing some great moral, and found your article and comments very helpful.

    • profile image

      Aliya 

      6 months ago

      I just wanted to say that it was great

    • profile image

      Shamnas 

      9 months ago

      What is moral of the story pls tell me

    • profile image

      Jeremy 

      18 months ago

      What about: If you are going to steal, you must be prepared to kill.

    • profile image

      Belinda Roccaforte 

      4 years ago

      Researching various fairytales for their allegorical value as morality tales. Ancient fairy tales are being re-written because at face value we see the lessons as outdated and actually "bad." If one takes the time, however, to look deeper the original moral was the best. Instead of reinterpreting Jack and the Beanstalk and determine Jack was a thief and the giant was good the original moral had to do with the giant being a hoarder of wealth and someone who has isolated himself from humanity in his greed. Jack personifies the whim of fate that destroys the giant and takes his hoard. Not dissimilar to the parable Jesus told of the rich man who stored up all of his wealth and then "that night he died." Thanks G. K. Chesterton. I love fairytales. --the Ethics of Elfland

    • profile image

      rubie 

      4 years ago

      iM sO veRy eNjOy tHe sToRy ..

    • rasta1 profile image

      Marvin Parke 

      5 years ago from Jamaica

      Great decoding. I also see Jack as the bad guy and the story is about how wealth is truly acquired.

    • whittwrites profile imageAUTHOR

      T.B Whitt 

      6 years ago from the Philly area

      I have always loved fairy tales. I look for the lessons in them we should have learned. Thanks all for your comments

    • girishpuri profile image

      Girish puri 

      6 years ago from NCR , INDIA

      Certain things which we ignore during our childhood, we understand after wards, your hub is an excellent example of lesson learnt after wards, great share, voted up.

    • whittwrites profile imageAUTHOR

      T.B Whitt 

      6 years ago from the Philly area

      Thanks for you wonderful comment. I look at each story and look for deeper meaning.

    • Reynold Jay profile image

      Reynold Jay 

      6 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Hey--I learned sopmething from this--and I never thought much about Jack and the BEanstalk in wuite this way! Welcome to Hubs! I enjoyed this very much. You have this laid out beautifully and it is easy to understand. Keep up the great HUBS. I gotta give this an Up ONE AND BEAUTIFUL. I' can't help myself as I simply must be your biggest fan!

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