A phoenix was flying from the south to the north.
On its way, it stopped in a forest to rest. When the crows and eagles saw it, they praised its beauty, nobility and elegance. After hearing the compliment, the phoenix was so happy that it decided to stay and be neighbors with these birds.
After a long time, the phoenix was tired of it because it felt all the other birds were ugly and unworthy to be with itself. So, the phoenix spread its wings again and decided to continue to fly north to find a bird to match itself as a companion.
During its flight, it came across a flock of geese flying south. The leading goose said to it, “You are so beautiful, why are you flying north?”
“The birds in the south are all too ugly, and I will lower my status if I live with them.” The phoenix finished speaking and prepared to fly northward again.
“But, my friend, the weather in the north is getting cold, how will you spend the winter if you fly there? Come back to the south with us.” The leading goose said sincerely to the phoenix.
“Forget it, I don’t want to listen to your nonsense! You are jealous that I am prettier than you, so you are lying to me.” The phoenix finished speaking and stubbornly flew to the north.
When winter came, the leaves fell from the trees in the northern forests, and the phoenix’s feathers fell with the change of seasons, making it impossible to keep out the cold. The phoenix hastily built a nest for itself but could not resist the cold of the north. After a heavy snowfall, the phoenix froze to death in its own nest.
A person’s appearance is important, but what is more important is his quality. In general, it is difficult for a person to be good inside and out. The external beauty, which is natural, cannot be chosen; while the inner beauty can be improved through our own cultivation. We should strengthen the inner cultivation, and avoid the pursuit of external pomp and circumstance, because people can only live by themselves, and only they know what is helpful to them, and what is dispensable to them.