Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Lion Love is Mane Event on Web


The tale of Christian the Lion is all over YouTube in the past week and has been seen by millions of people, including, perhaps, my readers. But I hadn't seen it until yesterday and I feel a deep desire to share this to spread the love.

On July 29 Mibsy blogged about this video that had been shown on the Today Show last week (I've found since that it was also played on The View) and that has since swept the Web. I want to thank her for that post with videos that were so wonderful I'll never forget the story or the scenes.

There is an update from the July 30 broadcast of the Today Show featuring the two men who were in the special video made 35 years ago. I'm placing this recent interview conducted by Meredith Vieira first because it shows, once again, the shorter version of the original video.

The video following the interview is the 6-minute full-ending version of the story, narrated by George Adamson's wife (they of Born Free fame). It's extremely stirring and very tender.

As the men explain in the interview, following the death of George Adamson (who is the silver-haired man in the original video) the Mkomazi Wildlife Preserve was established by the George Adamson Wildlife Preservation Trust in his memory, under the name WildlifeNOW. The men who saved Christian at Harrod's Department Store in London and from a certain life in a cage see it as this wondrous lion's legacy as well.









To achieve the mood of a warrior is not a simple matter. It is a revolution. To regard the lion and the water rats and our fellow men as equals is a magnificent act of a warrior's spirit. It takes power to do that. - Carlos Castaneda

Did you think the lion was sleeping because he didn't roar? - Johann Friedrich von Schiller

The fox provides for himself, but God provides for the lion. - William Blake

Mufasa: Look, Simba. Everything the light touches is our kingdom.
Young Simba: Wow.
Mufasa: A king's time as ruler rises and falls like the sun. One day, Simba, the sun will set on my time here, and will rise with you as the new king.
Young Simba: And this'll all be mine?
Mufasa: Everything.
Young Simba: Everything the light touches...
- The Lion King (1994)

14 comments:

Don't Feed The Pixies said...

There's always a big debate here in the UK over the relevancy of Zoos and Safari Parks. True they preserve the animals, but by their very nature they also take them away from the environment where they should, to coin a phrase, be born free.

There's been moves in recent years to persuade the local hunters that the animals are worth more as tourist attractions than as a fertility treatment - but the local farmers must laugh at us brits and our complaints about Badgers and Foxes when they have to cope with lions.

When the plight of our wildlife is reduced to an amusing story at the end of the news to take our minds of the FTSE its hard for people to realise how beautiful and precious these creatures are. Thanks for bringing this to my attention :)

raccoonlover1963 said...

Wonderful, very moving post. What I wouldn't give to be able to just pet a wild animal without being attacked!
Lisa

Mibsy said...

Thanks Lydia...this story is so inspirational and moving...I can't look at Lucy (my humble hound) now without seeing Christian looking back at me...such trust, such love. Its the way the world should be...and sometimes IS. :o)

Lydia said...

Hello Everyone,

Thanks for your comments.
I also am totally opposed to using parts of animals for fertility treatments; it's obscene. I also would love to pet a wild animal :)
I also am now seeing Christian in the eyes of our Abby, the 8-yr-old Sheepdog we rescued last year after she lost her second home.
Saying prayers for all the animals tonight....

Wayfaring Wanderer said...

Alright....that Whitney Houston song was totally unnecessary......I had to choke back my tears when that came on! Cody was telling me about this the other night......very touching indeed.

Lydia said...

WW,
Yup, "I Will Always Love You" really was powerful in the clip. But the scene is equally touching in the longer clip with a different type of song behind it...
The story goes straight to the heart!

rachael said...

This was such a beautiful post, Lydia, and I was also trying not to cry during the Whitney Houston song in the video like Wayfaring Wanderer mentioned! It's such a shame that people so often see these creatures (and many others) as nothing more than a tourist attraction or a nice fur coat.

Lydia said...

Rachael,
Thanks. You know, I'd just about give up on it all if I didn't have hope that there's hope...

francessa said...

Just wonderful! Thanks!

Lydia said...

I think so, too Francessa. I'll never forget Christian the Lion!

Honour said...

I'm so glad you sent me that link Lydia. I've told people about it - so many people. I went to the zoo over the weekend. I haven't been there since I've been to Africa. It was sobering this time around, I must say. I said to my sister, "gee, this is the first time I've come to the zoo and felt .. well... nauseous."

Lydia said...

Honour,
You were the first person I thought of when I saw the videos over at Mibsy's blog! I really enjoyed the follow-up video, too, as it was heartening to see the two men still in love with that lion and having turned that love into real works for wildlife preservation in their lives. I hadn't thought about what a zoo experience might be for you; very poignant comments.

sharryb said...

Wow, all my friends have been talking about this video clip. I'm so glad you posted it! It is just amazing to see people frolicking with a lion, being welcomed with open "arms". I totally appreicate that my cat, Luna, seems to enjoy our company even thought we are giants to her. Maybe we can develop into fuller humans if we stay rooted in our animal nature, in our plant nature, maybe even in our rock nature.

Lydia said...

SharryB,
What an interesting thought you posed: that our cats overlook that we are giants. I never thought of it that way. I'm posting a kitty piece on Aug. 7 with more video you might enjoy. The one with Christian is truly going to stand out in my mind forever.

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