As the Lunar New Year (Tuesday, 1 February 2022) is just around the corner, I thought I would share little stories about tiger as it’s going to the the Year of the Tiger.
In the west, the tigers I’m most familiar with are Tigger from Winnie the Pooh, and Hobbes, Calvin’s stuffed tiger and best friend. These are friendly tigers.
The tigers in the Chinese context seem to be mighty and ferocious. They are not there to ‘be kind’ or friendly.
Here is a widely known story between a fox and a tiger in the idiom 狐假虎威（hú jiǎ hǔ wēi):
A fox (hú 狐) lied to a tiger (hǔ 虎) that it (the fox) was sent by the Heavenly God therefore the tiger shouldn’t try to eat it. As the tiger was walking behind the fox, the animals in the jungle all fled at the sight of the tiger. The tiger however thought these animals were really in awe of the fox, and then let the fox go.
So, the fox has managed to profit from the tiger’s might to deceive other animals to survive, to his own advantage.
Do you have other stories of tigers to share? I would love to hear them.
I have found a brilliant Youtube video, which explains this Chinese fox and tiger story succinctly. I hope you enjoy it.