The Tale of Monkey and Tiger

Posted by rjagilbert on December 4, 2012 at 12:25 AM

On their way to a great festival at the far side of the jungle, Monkey and Tiger found their path blocked by the low-hanging branches of a great tree. Monkey stooped low and quickly scurried beneath the obstruction, but Tiger would not. Tiger was king of the jungle, and he did not stoop. So out came his claws and he went to work. He clawed and he pushed and he broke the low branch in half so that he could continue unhindered along the path.


Soon Monkey and Tiger came to a huge boulder lying directly in their way. Monkey quickly stepped off the trail and clambered around the obstruction, but Tiger would not. Tiger was king of the jungle, and nothing would make him change his course. So he went to work. He bunched his muscles and strained his back and pushed as hard as he could. At last, the great boulder was rolled out of the way and the two were able to continue on their way.


After a while, the travelers came to the bottom of a great cliff. The trail ended abruptly at the bottom, and they could see that it continued again from the top high above. Monkey quickly scrambled on his hands and knees up the rocky cliffside, but Tiger would not follow. Tiger was king of the jungle, and he did not climb. He growled fiercely at the cliff, dug his claws deep into the dirt, and set to work pulling the trail down to meet him on the ground. But despite all his efforts, Tiger could not move the cliff out of his way. He heaved and he tugged and he clawed. He grunted and strained, but the cliff remained above him, and the trail did not move.


“Let’s go, Tiger,” called Monkey from the top of the cliff. “The festival begins at sunset. We will be late if we don’t hurry.”


Tiger called back, “Then I must stop the sun from setting!”


Monkey shook his head, “That is foolishness, Tiger. Just climb up here and we will be on our way.”


“I will not,” Tiger roared. “You must run ahead and tell the festival to wait for me.”


With that, Monkey ran ahead to the festival. Try as he might, he could not convince the others to wait for Tiger to finish moving the cliff. The festival began at sunset, and Tiger missed out.


The moral of this story? Sometimes the easiest solution is to change yourself.

Categories: Fables and Tales