It’s been said that a picture is worth a thousand words. I can think of about 10,000 for the picture below.
When I look at this picture there are certain feelings and thoughts that run through my mind. There are certain thoughts and feeling that do not run through my mind.
First, I think “oh how adorable that little lion cub!” Then I see the look of love and concern on the faces of the two larger lions. Then I realize the lessons of independence and self-reliance they’re teaching the cub. They’re allowing the baby to stretch, but keeping a close watch on their family. I get so caught up in those emotions and the fact that they’re doing the right thing by their child, I don’t notice for several minutes that the two larger lions are both female. This is fairly typical in nature’s family groups. The males are typically not around for child rearing. In a lion’s case, the papa lion will carelessly kill the cub just to keep it away from a kill.
The questions that I do not ask myself when I look at this picture is are they male and female? Are they the right kind of family for that child? Are they hurting that child by their actions? Are they taking care of that child?
In our society today, so many people define family as one man, one woman, and children. They try to say that two women, or two men, cannot raise happy children. They also try to say that one woman or one man cannot raise happy children. They also try to sell us that one man, or one woman, or two men, or two women should not even be legally allowed to try. But at the same time, I hear other people saying that the more love a child has as they grow the better off they are.
It’s a real puzzle to me, what’s right and what’s wrong. I can only say that when two people love each other, that love tends to multiply when it’s shared.
So for me what defines a family is love. When you look at this picture, you cannot deny that those two female lions love that cub.