"The lion shall lie down with the lamb." Ever heard that? Well, supposedly it came from the Old Testament book of Isaiah, chapter 11, verse 6.
It was an incorrect quote, though. Let the homely tiger make up his own version, based on real life experience. "The tiger shall surrender the bed to the dogs." He woke up at 2:30 A.M. at the edge of the bed, with nowhere to move. Two dogs had crowded him to the terminus point, with only enough room to breathe. One false move, and the floor would stop the tiger's body, but not before the head would take on a bookcase.
The ugly (homely) tiger growled, knowing there would be no chance for going back to sleep. He surrendered the remaining real estate on the king sized bed to his two dogs, and went on to the office to contemplate the dream that graced his moments of Delta sleep.
In the dream, the tiger was trying to get away from the crowds of people. Crowds? No. Maybe two or three people. To a tiger, that is a crowd. The tiger jumped on a bicycle and pushed down a long winding ramp into the bottom level of a parking garage, where he bumped into a fairy, with wings and the works, who was being stalked by a pudgy (or should I say, "portly") elf. Tiger promised to defend the fairy and turned to confront the elf. Then awareness of the edge of the bed brought the tiger to consciousness in the "real" world.
Read The History Of Last Night's Dream by Roger Kamenetz. Roger would advise the homely tiger that his dream was mocking his aversion to interacting with people. And, my gosh, if the tiger can take on an elf on behalf of a frightened fairy, what is the big deal about hanging out with two or three people?
The homely tiger has no clue!
Have you ever read Byron Katie's Loving What Is? The tiger says, "Read it, or I will anoint you with sweet and sour sauce and have you for lunch."
Well, OK, the tiger isn't that hungry, but if you struggle in a tension filled relationship, take a look at it. Byron Katie has developed an effective method for dealing with pain and anger in relationships.
Like the tiger always says, sometimes: no one can make him mad, no one can make him happy, no one can make him sad without his full participation. The tiger controls his own feelings and moods, etc. Well, discounting hormones and instinct, that is. Even then, a well disciplined tiger can overcome even hormones and instinct if he puts his striped mind to it.
It's part of a realization of who one really is, and the responsibility one has for one's own feelings.
Wisdom comes from many directions. The tiger does not subscribe to any religion per se. He takes wisdom where ever it is. Wisdom is not hidden, especially in our times. We choose to ignore it, usually because of some bias or because we stubbornly hold on to error packed traditions and assumptions. There are passages in the Bible and ancient writings from Eastern traditions urging us not to judge our neighbors. They warn that we will be judged as we judge others. Byron Katie says that what we hate in others, we hate in ourselves. So, when we judge others, we are judging ourselves and we need to look at ourselves to solve the problems we have with others.
Take a look at Byron Katie's website: http://www.thework.com. Study the videos, learn the process, and then give it a try. It's all free on her site. It works grrreat for the tiger. The end result of the process brings the tiger to the point that he understands the person whom he has allowed to offend him, and he has compassion for the person because the homely tiger has the same issue.
When you are at peace with yourself, you will be at peace with your neighbor. Then the lion shall lie down with the lamb.
Be Peace. Be Love.