Tiger: I Survived

sterling silver tiger pendant charm beth hemmila hint jewelry necklace
I Survived, Beth Hemmila (Hint Jewelry): sterling silver tiger pendant charm

You are a survivor. You chose life by whatever means necessary. May you feel safe when quiet enfolds you in her arms. Shed the burden of your courage and strength. Touch your wound and feel tender buds of compassion. For you are alive, and you made it, soldier of love.


I'm a huge fan of large cats, but I've never been particularly drawn to tigers until I read the book Life of Pi by Yann Martel. This story has haunted me since the day I put the book down, though I'm still not sure why. The central characters are a boy called Pi and a Bengal tiger who goes by the name of Richard Parker. One of the central themes of the story is survival when faced with seemingly insurmountable circumstances -- the will to live despite how disastrous things appear.

I won't ruin the story for you, but one of the ideas that came out of the book is that sometimes you may choose to become like a tiger to survive -- raw, primal, and instinctual. You may choose to access the part of you that fights and claws at life to stay alive.

tiger life of pi richard parker ang lee movie petting book life raft
Life of Pi, directed by Ang Lee

All of us are survivors in small and big ways. And many of us have called upon our inner tiger for the courage and strength to make it to the other side of our travails.

A solider coming home from war, a mother leaving an abusive relationship, a child going into foster care, a surgeon losing a patient during surgery, a teenager running away from bullies, a woman working another 60 hour week, an addict entering treatment, a man losing his job, a cancer patient choosing chemo...

Whoever you are and whatever you are going through, may you feel the love found within your tiger nature and find a way to survive.

tiger man hugging
last goodbye


  1. I saw the movie and have the book which I know will be better than the movie as most books are... For me the tiger represents the inner strength of the main character... btw I was shocked as heck to see my jr. high friend, Jimmy in the movie- he played the senior insurance man... wow, still acting after all these years!.

    1. I haven't seen the movie yet and like you saw the Tiger as symbolic of the main character's strength of spirit. What fun to see your friend in pictures!

    2. the movie will tear at your heart ( warning)... the boat scene especially.. there are animal metaphors which really tore at my heart... Ang Lee is a fantastic director... did a bit of googling and the author of this book was inspired by the original idea 'Max and the Cats' by Brazillan author,Moacyr Scliar. I thought I could get it on Amazon for a decent price... sadly it costs a arm and a leg.. don't know why...

    3. Interesting! I didn't know this connection between the two books. Maybe a library will have it. I'm looking forward to seeing how Ang Lee works his magic.


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