When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.
- Lao Tzu
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Tiger, one of the most vicious animals till date is also one of the beasts full of conceit.
It is believed that it was once completely orange in colour. Now the question is how did it get black stripes all over its body?
Around 3000 years ago, Tiger was one of the most formidable clans in the cat family. The clan was known for their ginger fur that would burn with pride; fervor of hunting down animals and creating terror around.
Amongst them, there was a tiger that was dronish yet filled with pride because he belonged to the orange fur clan. He was called Torpid by the other tigers because of his sluggish nature. But his vanity was indomitable.
One day, as he was lazing around the lake, a lamb came by to drink water. As it tried to reach the bank of the river, it accidentally injured itself by a sharp rock lying over there. The lamb started bleating in agony as blood gushed out from the wound. The smell of the lamb’s blood instigated a feeling of hunger in Torpid. He pounced upon the credulous creature. Before the lamb could bleat out for help, Torpid had already robbed it off its life.
As he was feeding off the soft flesh of the poor creature, he thought, “It is easier to prey upon younger animals than grownups. Their flesh is so tender, so juicy. From now on I will hunt only young ones!”
His voracity for young animals increased as he started preying upon them daily. One could never satisfy his hunger, nor would two. His greed for soft flesh increased as he started killing more than six young animals a day.
The Patron Angel of Wild Animals, Archangel Ariel could no longer bear to see the voracious act Torpid, nor could she hear the mourning of animals on losing their children. She went up to Torpid and his clan to condemn his actions, “Your gluttonous act has created mayhem in the nature’s order. For the pain that you have caused to the others, I curse you all that the males can never live with their off springs. If you do then you will be compelled to kill them and eat them up as if they were lambs. Ergo, they will live far away from you so that you can feel the anguish they other parent animals felt when you robbed them off their children. As for the females, you will live away from your mates in order to safeguard your children. Torpid, because of your heinous act, I declare that from now on your orange furs will near black stripes signifying your vain, greedy and merciless nature.”
The curse of Archangel Ariel prevails today too, as the male tigers cannot watch their cubs grow and as the females stay away from their mates to protect their future.