Anyone who knows me will tell you that my absolute favorite Disney movie (animated or not) of all time is The Lion King. This, conversely, means my favorite Disney Broadway show is The Lion King On Broadway; my favorite Disney musical album is The Lion King [Original Broadway Cast]; my favorite- or should I say most detested- Disney villain is Scar; and my favorite Disney show in the theme parks is Festival of the Lion King at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park.
Well, that much is a given, but I always have reasons to justify my beliefs. For example, Disney’s The Lion King is much more than a beautifully drawn masterpiece. From the wanderings of the young king Simba in the jungles of Africa, the viewer receives valuable life lessons.
Life Lesson # 1: Know Yourself
In this scene Rafiki (which means “friend” in Swahili) meets adult Simba ( which means “lion”) as Simba wanders morosely around a river pining for his deceased father Mufasa (“king” in the Manazoto language). Rafiki must help Simba remember who he is, and the best way by doing this is to show him his living father.
We should always know who we are, lest someone tell us who they think we are.
Life Lesson #2: Know Your True Worth
Check out this scene (stop at the 2:00min mark)
“You are more than what you have become,” Mufasa tells Simba. He reminds his son that he is the one true king and he must become who he was meant to be.
I love Timon and Pumba (Pumba means “foolish”, by the way), I truly do. However, Simba is a lion, not a meerkat, nor a warthog. He is supposed to be a carnivorous animal. He is meant to rule the savannah, not to parlay in the jungle. He must reclaim his kingdom and be who he was meant to become.
We must know our true worth, our true purpose in life.
Life Lesson #3: Face Your Fears to Master Them
Now let’s continue the above video from 2mins to the end.
“Oh yes, the past can hurt…You can either run from it, or learn from it,” Rafiki tells Simba as he swings his walking stick. This time, Simba ducks.
Simba is afraid of his past; this is his biggest fear. He has spent the past few years hiding in the jungle, avoiding his inescapable past. Of course, this is not effective. We must face our fears. By doing so we become empowered to master them, thus ridding ourselves of their influence.
I can’t imagine how any genuine, certified, Disney Dork could be unfamiliar with The Lion King, but I know there most likely are a few. For this reason, I have tried to avoid giving out any spoilers (save the death of King Mufasa) so you can enjoy the movie yourself.
Now go, go on, enjoy this great movie, and see what other life lessons you can draw from it! Leave a comment below on your favorite part from the Lion King!
“Simba, let me tell you something my father told me. Look at the stars. The great kings of the past look down on us from those stars…So whenever you feel alone, just remember that those kings will always be there to guide you. And so will I”- Mufasa, The Lion King