Stories of Self-Awareness
The Lion and the Sheep
There was once a pregnant lion that was on its last legs. She dies soon after giving birth. The newborn not knowing what to do makes its way into a nearby field and mingles with a herd of sheep. The mother sheep sees the cub and decides to raise it as its own. And so the lion cub grows up along with the other sheep and starts thinking and acting just like a sheep. It would bleat like a sheep and even eat grass! But it was never truly happy. For one, it always felt that there was something missing. And secondly, the other sheep would constantly make fun of it for being so different. They would say, “You are so ugly and your voice sounds so weird. Why can’t you bleat properly like the rest of us? You are a disgrace to the sheep community!” The lion would just stand there and take in all these remarks feeling extremely sad. It felt it had let down the sheep community by being so different and that it was a waste of space. One day, an older lion from a far off jungle sees the herd of sheep and decides to attack it. While attacking, it sees the young lion running away along with the other sheep.
Curious as to what was happening, the older lion decides to stop chasing the sheep and pursues the younger lion instead. It pounces on the lion and growls asking it why it is running away with the sheep? The younger lion shakes in fear and says, “please don’t eat me, I am just a young sheep. Please let me go!”. Upon hearing this, the older lion growls, “That’s nonsense! You are not a sheep, you are a lion, just like me!”. The younger lion simply repeats, “I know I am a sheep, please let me go”. At this point, the older lion gets an idea. It drags the younger lion to a river nearby and asks it to look at its reflection. Upon looking at the reflection, the lion much to its own astonishment realizes who it really was; it was not a sheep, it was a mighty lion!
The young lion feels so thrilled that it lets out a mighty roar. The roar echoes from all corners of the jungle and frightens the living daylights out of all the sheep that were hiding behind the bushes to see what was happening. They all flee away. No longer will the sheep be able to make fun of the lion or even stand close to it for the lion had found its true nature and its true herd.
The Elephant and The Pig
An elephant was walking toward its herd after taking a bath in a nearby river. On its way the elephant sees a pig walking towards it. The pig as usual was coming after a relaxing dip in muddy waters. It was covered in mud. Upon approaching closer, the pig sees the elephant moving out of its way allowing the pig to pass. While walking past, the pig makes fun of the elephant accusing the elephant of being afraid of it. It also tells this to other pigs standing nearby and they all laugh at the elephant. Upon seeing this, some elephants from the herd ask their friend in amazement, “Were you really afraid of that pig?” To which the elephant replies, “No. I could have crushed that pig under my leg if I wanted to, but the pig was muddy and the mud would have splashed on me too. I wanted to avoid that, hence I stepped aside.”