Animals have been used as totems by Native Americans who are given a strong totem, such as an eagle or mountain lion, to protect them. Sports teams use animals as mascots to imply strength (Detroit Tigers). Countries even use mascots such as Great Britain, who uses the symbol of the bulldog to imply tenacity. And, the Bible says that "Jesus is also known as "The Lion of the tribe of Judah" (Revelation 5:5).
A theological study of the use of animals to describe human behaviours or moral standing finds that animals are used throughout biblical history. The serpent of Genesis is the first representation of something other than human interacting with someone human. Eve was tempted by the evil serpent and then became evil herself when she then tempted Adam. The dreaded "Beast" of Revelation (the last book of the New Testament) ends the Bible. There are approximately one hundred twenty different animals mentioned in the Bible (Hammond).
Animals are treated different culturally as well. In India the cow is a holy animal because of the Hindu belief that cows are descendents of Lord Krishna. Another Hindu belief is that cows are the mother of all civilizations (Nature Magazine). Cows are cared for carefully and gently moved aside if someone needs to move past them. Other cultures embrace animal images and attributes. ...Show more