[EF#16] – Greed Over Small Gains, Brings Big Losses


Because there were some circumstances i couldn’t join the English Friday’s challange. And now, I can participate again. It feels awkward and confusing to make a sentence after a long time not write anything in English. I realize my English skill not become better. So sad. But at least, I tried. Okay, theme of this week is to tell about your favorite Indonesian tales, also the values that you can get from it to be applied in our life.

And, my favorite Indonesian tale is “Lebai Malang” from West Sumatra. He is an unfortunate man because of his own actions.


lebai malang

pict source : tunasasterarakyat-2010.blogspot.com

Once upon a time there was a man who lived on the bank of a river. He was a religious teacher, then people called him “Lebai”.

One day, Lebai received an invitation to the feast of two rich people from neighbour villages. Unfortunately, the feast was going on the same hour of the same day. Lebai thought about the profit of each invitation. He wasn’t able to make decisions which village to visit first. He thought, if he went to the feast in upstream village the host would give him presents two head buffalo head. However, he wasn’t familiar with the host. According to the news, the upstream village cuisine wasn’t as good as the downstream village cuisine.

If he went to the feast in downstream village, he would be rewarded with a tasty cooked buffalo head. He also knew the host very well. However, the host at upstream village will give him additional pastries. Until he began paddling the boat to the place of the feast, he hasn’t been able to decide which feast will be chosen.

First, he pedaled his boat headed upstream village, then on the way he changed his mind. He turned his boat paddle headed downstream village. Once he arrived at the downstream. He saw some guests headed upstream. The guest said that the buffalo which slaughtered there was very thin. Then, he changed the direction of his boat towards the upstream. After he arrived at the edge of upstream village, he saw the guests left the host’s home, the feast was over.

Lebai quickly pedaling his boat to the village downstream. Unfortunately, the feast also was over. Lebai didn’t got a buffalo head just like that he wants. At that time he was very hungry, so he decided to fishing and hunting. He brought supplies of rice and his beloved dog.

He was fishing for awhile and his hook eaten by fish. But the hook caught in the riverbed. Then, Lebai plunge into the river to take the fish. But, the fish escape. The dogs which he left on the boat ate his rice supplies. In the end, he got nothing. So, because of his misfortune fate, people gave him the nickname “Lebai Malang”.


The value that we can take from the story is don’t be a greedy human over something. Because greed is bad trait that will harm yourself. From what i see, greedy people will never be happy because they don’t know how to be grateful. Be people who are sincere and grateful, then our lives will filled with blessings. I hope the story above can be a reflection for our lives.

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20 thoughts on “[EF#16] – Greed Over Small Gains, Brings Big Losses

  1. eviindrawanto April 24, 2015 at 7:15 am Reply

    I have forgotten that West Sumatera has this nice tale, Lebai Malang. Thank you for bring it back to my memory, Sis 🙂

    • Eka Novita April 27, 2015 at 4:01 am Reply

      You’re welcome mbak. Yes, i don’t know why but seems the Indonesian tales from Sumatra not as famous as tales from Java 🙂

  2. Andik Taufiq April 24, 2015 at 7:39 am Reply

    I thought it was just a “orang lebay yg malang”, hehe… Nice story anyway…

    • Eka Novita April 27, 2015 at 4:05 am Reply

      hehhehehe, his name quite popular now but has different mean:D
      thank you Mas !

  3. Febriyan Lukito April 24, 2015 at 8:00 am Reply

    Never heard about this before. Thank you for sharing it.

    • Eka Novita April 27, 2015 at 4:07 am Reply

      I also thought this tale not as well known as tales from Java. I just feel quiet sad actually.

  4. ichasyahfa April 24, 2015 at 9:10 am Reply

    Agree with the life lesson, Mbak Eka. Be grateful and don’t be a greedy one. 😊

    • Eka Novita April 27, 2015 at 4:10 am Reply

      Yes, when i was kid this story left big impression on me. It make me feel how pitiful Pak Lebai, but he had that condition because his greedy. So, i dont want to be person like him.

  5. jampang April 24, 2015 at 9:17 am Reply

    pernah lihat dramanya di TVRI… sebelum zamannya sinetron

    • Eka Novita April 27, 2015 at 4:11 am Reply

      Waaaah, pernah ada dramanya ya Bang ? Aku umur berapa ya zaman itu 😀

      • jampang April 27, 2015 at 5:29 am

        pernah…. hmm… jangan-jangan belum lahir 😀
        pernah nonton sinetron Rumah Masa Depan nggak setiap hari minggu di TVRI? kalau pernah, ya kurang lebih sezamanlah dengan itu

      • Eka Novita April 27, 2015 at 5:48 am

        Nggak pernah bang. kayaknya aku emang belum lahir deh di zaman itu 😀

  6. cahyanidwy April 24, 2015 at 10:20 am Reply

    Ah, this story also written in Bahasa Indonesia’s book of elementary school 🙂 Miss this story 🙂

    • Eka Novita April 27, 2015 at 4:12 am Reply

      yes, i also know this story from Bahasa Indonesia’s book of elementary school. And i still rememberd it because the story left big impression on me.

  7. rizzaumami April 25, 2015 at 10:47 pm Reply

    i remember it. When I was in elementary school or junior high school, I get little forget.

    • Eka Novita April 27, 2015 at 4:13 am Reply

      I know this story when i was in elementary school 🙂

      • rizzaumami April 27, 2015 at 9:37 am

        Wah, seangkatan. 😀

  8. nianastiti April 26, 2015 at 12:24 pm Reply

    I has just realized that this tale is origin from West Sumatera, nice story Mba 🙂

  9. fee April 27, 2015 at 9:16 am Reply

    Wow..Lebai is really exist..I mean we have already known the word ‘lebay’ in our daily life..

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