Wrestling With A Tiger To Save His Father: Yang Xiang
In the time of the Jin Dynasty, a boy of fourteen years, named Yang Xiang used to follow his father to work in the fields each day. One morning as they climbed down to the paddies to harvest rice, from out of nowhere a large, striped tiger appeared before them. The tiger scooped up Yang Xiang"s father in its mouth and headed back to the forest. "Save me! Save me!" cried the boy"s father. Hearing his pathetic wails, Yang Xiang anxiously looked for his Father. He saw the big cat carrying the old man away. With no thought but to rescue his father from mortal danger, and completely forgetting about his own safety, the boy ran headlong after the tiger. He leapt up on the tiger" s back and using every ounce of strength, he choked the animal tightly by the throat.. Throttled in a death-grip by Yang Xiang, the tiger fought for its breath. He had to drop the man he carried in his fangs. Frightened by the ferocity of the young boy"s attack, the tiger put its tail between its legs and ran for its life.
Saved from death"s door, Yang Xiang"s father was in shock, but otherwise unhurt. Yang Xiang watched the tiger disappear into the forest, and then carried his father back home to recover. When news of the incident reached the neighbors, they heaped praise on the boy, calling him a heroic, filial child.
A verse in his praise says,
In the wilds they met the fierce white jaws.
Yang Xiang punched hard, and choked the smelly beast.
Delivered to safety were father and devoted son:
Snatched back alive from the tiger"s mouth.