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THE LION KING: AN ANALOGY

“THE LION KING”: AN ANALOGY 
Posted by Shifra Shomron, September 18, 2005.

                       Reposted from http://www.think-israel.org/sep05bloged.html

 

 

Have you seen the movie, “The Lion King”? Apart from providing the viewer with a very entertaining film, it also managed to provide a beautifully done analogy of our Jewish history. “Where is the den of lions, and the feeding place of the young lions, where the lion, and the lioness walked, and the lion’s whelp, and none made them afraid?” (Nahum 2:12). Let me explain.In the beginning of the movie, the “Pride Lands” are ruled by the King of the Jungle, the lions. The leader of the pack is Mufasa. Sadly, he prematurely meets his death while doing his utmost to save his son and crown prince, Simba. Let us say that: the “Pride Lands” is analogous to the Land of Israel, Mufasa is a symbol for all the heroic Jews who have fallen while defending our Nation, and Simba symbolically represents the people of Israel in their reestablished State.

After Mufasa dies, Simba feels alone, lost, bewildered and guilty (thinking he caused his father’s death). After all, he is very young… and attempts to flee from his proud heritage, homeland, and purpose in “the circle of life.” The Jewish people have done likewise. So many brave and good people have fallen. And when the dust cleared up we’ve found ourselves alone, bewildered, and even feeling guilty. We ran from being sons of The King:

“Hadar!

A Jew, even in poverty remains a prince.

Whether servant or serf you were created the son of kings.

Crowned with the diadem of David;

In light or in darkness, remember the crown…” (A translation from Ze’ev Jabotinsky’s song by Rav Meir Kahane, The Story of the J.D.L., page 81).

Throughout our history we’ve run. And being isolated, weak, and far from our homeland we were easy prey for all the buzzards who eagerly came at us in the hot and barren deserts of exile. Indeed, in exile we have always been in great danger from the non-Jew. Away from our homeland we have been forced to eat slugs to survive. And while we may get used to them and declare them “slimy and satisfying,” we CAN NOT, in real life, live long and prosper from them. No indeed!

Luckily Simba is saved from the buzzards by …Timone and Pumbaa. While Timone and Pumbaa are charming characters and save Simba’s life, they are also dangerous — almost as much as the buzzards. They get Simba used to eating slugs, keep him away from Pride Rock, and convincingly teach him warped ethics, “When the world turns it’s back on you, you turn your back on the world.” Simba, feeling that his former world HAS turned its back on him, now prepares to settle down in the jungle where he’ll spend his leisure time bathing, resting, and eating grubs. In other words, Timone and Pumbaa are representative of the lost assimilated Jews who feast on a steady diet of western culture including the “makes me happy, feels good” attitude. Simba’s new leaders are those who did save him and they indeed have many merits, however they decided to desert the Pride Lands and ignore their problems instead of facing them. And with them, Simba forgets that he should be king. In fact, he doesn’t WANT to be king. And like Simba, the Jewish people is satisfied with the western rubbish and as time goes by they no longer care about their history, their land, their future — their raison d’etre. Very sad and very scary.

Meanwhile, back at “Pride Rock”, things have not been idle. In Simba’s absence his uncle Scar assumes the throne. Scar is power hungry and clever. In order to be king, Scar had made a pact based on “reciprocity” with the hyenas, enemies of the lions, that in return for killing Simba and Mufasa they will have all access to the “Pride Lands.” But Simba was rescued by his father and ran for safety. Scar then killed his brother Mustafa and convinced Simba that he and he alone killed his own father. Frightened Simba asked his uncle Scar what to do and naively heeded Scar’s advice to flee and to never return to the “Pride Lands.”

The film ingeniously portrayed a Hitler-like scene showing Scar from a podium with lights on him, the Nazi salute along with hyenas goose-step marching. In short, clearly the hyenas symbolize our Arab enemy while Scar represents the left-wing in Israel. They, like Scar, are willing to arm their foe and share their precious, bountiful, but tiny Land. They are even willing to kill their brother — anything to rule. Scar sings of ushering in a new era wherein lion and hyena live side by side in peaceful coexistence in the “Pride Lands.”

“Be prepared for the murkiest scam 
Meticulous planning 
Tenacity spanning

Decades of denial

Is simply why I’ll 
Be King undisputed 
Respected, saluted 
And seen for the wonder I am…”

So, Scar becomes king. And true to his words he brings the hyenas from the “Shadow Lands” to the “Pride Lands.” The Land responds to the hyenas by becoming brown and barren. The economic situation is in ruins; no food, no rainfall. Nothing prospers. Equally with the Land of Israel as, having armed and welcomed the Arabs during the ominous years of Oslo, we now find ourselves in problematic situations i.e., low Kinneret water levels which carry our national water supply (and yet we still provide Jordan with our water), increased poverty level, high unemployment.

With the once prosperous “Pride Lands” now devastated, young lioness Nala leaves her homeland in search of help. A few words about Nala: She and Simba were lion cub playmates wherein she followed his lead. Now a mature lioness, she neither seeks greener pastures nor ignores the plight of her kingdom rather feels obligated and committed to her pride and Land. Eventually she finds a confused Simba denying his destiny and lovingly tries to convince him to return to his rightful place in this world. Nala managed to reach a harmonious and loving relationship with Simba yet even in that ideal situation the difference of their visions for the future come between them. She isn’t successful at bringing him back into the pride, singing:

“He’s holding back, he’s hiding 
But what, I can’t decide 
Why won’t he be the king I know he is 
The king I see inside?”

I liken Nala symbolically to the Religious Zionists who have been involved with the building of the State of Israel since its rebirth. They have sat in every coalition and “with love we shall win” attitude tried to bring our Nation back to its rightful path. But, like Nala, they didn’t quite succeed.

To the rescue comes wise old baboon Rafiki with the clearest knowledge of how everything should be in the circle of life. Initially he sounds quite comical and foolish — senile in his old age. But he isn’t. And he manages to connect Simba to his father Mufasa and make him understand that he belongs in the “Pride Lands” at “Pride Rock” and as the King:

“It’s the circle of life

And it moves us all

Through despair and hope

Through faith and love

Till we find our place

On the path unwinding

In the circle

The circle of life.”

I liken Rafiki to our prophets. The Jewish Nation must realize that our wisest course is to follow their advice; once we do so we will manage to oust the left wing (Scar), banish the Arabs (hyenas) and cause the Land of Israel (“Pride Lands”) to blossom once more. And that day will arrive once we get past the stage of flauntingly singing and dreaming of the day when

“No one saying do this

No one saying be there

No one saying stop that

No one saying see here

Free to run around all day

Free to do it all my way.”

Once we get past that stage, we’ll be able to listen to the wise old Prophet’s (Rafiki) advice and remember that we, too, are lions — born to rule in the sovereign Land of Israel “everywhere the light touches” and to spread that light to the rest of the world.

“Yehuda is a lion’s whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he crouched as a lion and as a lioness; who shall rouse him up? The staff shall not depart from Yehuda, nor the scepter from between his feet.” — (Genesis, Vayhi 49:9-10)

Shifra Shomron is a refugee from Gush Katif. She is 18 years old. She now lives in Caravilla site, Nitzan 2.

 

http://www.think-israel.org/sep05bloged.html


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