The Soul of Asia

Discover the tiger's role in myth, history and religion.

By Brad Kollus

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"I firmly believe that the true conservation values exist in a nation because of the rituals, myths and legends that abound in the traditions of the people. Enormous damage has been done to the tiger in the last 50 years as changes have affected the cultural fabric across Asia," says Valmik Thapar, worldwide leading tiger conservationist and author of "The Tiger's Destiny" and "Tiger: The Ultimate Guide." He also has been a consultant to the government of India on how to save the forests where the tigers live.

The tiger is the largest cat in the world and the second most endangered large cat, after the snow leopard. It has played a positive and important role in the culture, religion and history of more than a billion people for thousands of years, across most of the countries of Asia. There are five different subspecies of tigers in existence today: Indochinese, South Chinese, Sumatran, Siberian and Bengal. Three tiger subspecies already are extinct: Caspian, Bali and Javan.

**Get the April 2008 issue of CAT FANCY to read the full article.**

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