We are pleased to participate in the A to Z Blog Challenge (http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/). The Story Crossroads theme for this year is Beating the Odds…Lucky Folktales Around the World to Brighten Your Day. Each post highlights that the stars aligned and what would have normally been…bad…turned out after all. Considering what we – as humankind – have experienced the past year, how nice is it to remember that all of us can “beat the odds” to some level in our lives.
And we’ll admit now…some are actually myths, legends, or epics rather than only limited to folktales. So is that a type of “loading the dice”? Ah, but the stories were too wonderful to pass by.
From Hmong (Miao)
The Hmong people come mainly from the mountains in China, Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand. The Hmong are one of several ethnic groups considered the Miao. Many Hmong stories are harder to locate in published form as the written version of their language did not become formal until the 1950s. Stories were mainly passed from person to person. This story is one of the “classics” of the Hmong people most specifically within Laos. One of the worst things you can tell someone is to yell for a tiger to bite someone. This is more intense than any swear words.
What makes tigers dangerous?
Tigers have teeth and claws. They can camouflage with their black stripes within jungles or tall grass. Obvious, right? Though, the tiger is this Hmong story also has magic and does not simply camouflage with the land but SHAPESHIFTS to look like humans. Yikes!
Girl born with magic. Tiger eats her father. Tiger shapeshifts into father. Girl senses and convinces mother. Tosses chili peppers into tiger’s eyes. Rushes to stream. Girl calls to crow to tell villagers to come with weapons. Tiger surrounded. Girl uses magic to make tiger disappear using power of love.
That girl was lucky with her magic but also with a kind family and neighbors. Yes, it was still sad about her father. Yet, amazingly, the girl tapped into the love of everyone around her but especially her father to be able to make the tiger disappear and save everyone else.
Finding the Story:
Please share in the comments…or anything on your mind. While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has year-round offerings with virtual as well as proper-distanced/masked/outdoors.
We are excited for the monthly All Things Story virtual workshop series as well as the hybrid Story Crossroads Festival on May 10-13, 2021 (then viewing beyond the event to June 15, 2021). Interested in deeper articles and e-workbooks plus stories, activities, and recipes? Then pursue Story Crossroads Memberships.
See a teaser of our Story Crossroads Academy. While the video has closed captioning, the “Storytelling Basics in 8 Hours” is free and includes American Sign Language.