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The life of a lion on the Serengeti plain is violent and confrontational. While lifespans of lions in captivity can reach 20 years, in the
wild males rarely age past 10 due to
injuries sustained mostly by fighting other lions. Lions are apex predators; they have no natural enemies. They function as a keystone species exerting a disproportionately large effect on their ecosystem. They sleep or rest 20 hours a day. They are the only social felines in the wild living in prides of related females and offspring and a few males. The females do the vast majority of the hunting. Lions band together for protection from roving bands of male lions who attack sometimes displacing resident males. The group fares much better defending these attacks. If successful the attacking males typically try to kill any cubs to put females back in heat and ensure their own progeny. Mother lions who are out muscled and out sized by males stand a much better chance of protecting their cubs in these attacks than individuals. Male lion manes are the only example of manes in the feline world. The darkness and density of the mane signals strength, size, and fighting skill. Female lions seek to mate with darker maned lions and males tend to avoid them. Nonetheless, lions have long been considered noble creatures. Both in the bible and in the medieval bestiary tradition they are looked at favourably as a creature we can look up to. The main lesson we learn from lions, particularly male lions, is that we should not necessary trust those in power or who we have thought noble or ideal, especially men.


Always a song about lions

I thought that you would make me alive
I thought that you could rise
I thought that you would lead me to heaven
I thought that you could hide

But it was
Someone else
Who found the right words, found the right path

I know that you despise the young
you want them to die
I know that you don’t care for your neighbour
you only care for your pride

And it was
Someone else
Who would protect me, circle round me

I will be more careful the next time
I put my trust in my eyes
I will look to the colour of your hair
and how it lies

Because it’s
Someone else
Bringing us together, holding us forever


from Of Every Creature, released October 4, 2013


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anabaptist bestiary project Ann Arbor, Michigan

Rocking the world through reflection on creatures the Anabaptist Bestiary Project is a ten piece alternative rock ensemble under the creative direction of Trevor Bechtel. The ABP collects vocal and instrumental musicians from Bluffton University to delve into the artistic and literary heritage of the spirituality of creatureliness. ... more

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