How to Write a Parable

Write a parable that gives a spiritual lesson.

A parable is a short story that has a religious or spiritual lesson in it. Many religions and cultures have popular parables that live on for generations. Writing your own parable is richly rewarding. It can help you enlighten and entertain those who cross your path, as well as deepen your understanding of your religious and spiritual beliefs.

Write or type out the moral of the story. If the spiritual or religious lesson is already written in parable form, read the parable and extract the meaning from it. This will be your starting point, or the foundation of your parable.

Know your audience. Who are you writing the parable for? Do you want to reach children, teens or adults? Do you want your parable to reach all people, or just to a specific group? Knowing this will help you develop a story that is appropriate for your audience.

Spend some time brainstorming. If you have a spiritual concept, such as "we are all connected," think of ways that you see that in your day-to-day life. How do you, yourself, understand the concept or lesson that you want to develop into a story? Think of ways that you've received the lesson in your life. Nature is a great teacher of many spiritual lessons. Spend some time outdoors for inspiration. Or, read other parables, such as the parables of Jesus, for ideas.

Develop your story. Keep it simple. The characters don't have to be actual people. You can use nature or animals to tell the story, if you wish. Be creative. Also, you can illustrate the story by using dialog between two people. Recall a time when you were given a lesson by another person. How did they reveal the story to you? What was the dialog like between you? See if you can recreate it in the story.

Parables are more effective when written short. Tell your story in 400 words or less.

Have someone read your story. Does it make your reader inspired, or think a different way? Inspiration is the key to a great parable.