The Animal Inside You

Mafu: careless or not serious in doing things

Once there was a painter who drew tigers.  While finishing drawing a tiger’s head, a man approached him and asked for a painting of a horse.  So the artist added a horse’s body to his work-in-progress.  The man asked what the animal was, and the painter replied, “If you think it looks like a horse, it’s a horse.  If it looks like a tiger, it’s a tiger.  Ha!  A horse or a tiger; it makes no difference!”  The stranger did not buy the painting, so the artist hung it in his own home.  His elder son saw it and asked what it was, and the painter replied, “It’s a horse.”  At a different time, his younger son asked the same question, and the artist told him, “It’s a tiger.”  Later, the younger son saw a horse on the street.  Thinking it a tiger, he shot it dead with an arrow.  The elder son saw a tiger in the woods.  He wanted to ride on it but was killed by the animal.

What animal are you like?

In Chinese culture, your birth year translates into an animal on the zodiac.  These animals hold certain characteristics, which correspond to your nature (see my post on the dragon).  In the Western world, the most encountered personality test is the Myers-Briggs.  When I first took it (in a high school psychology class), I demonstrated an INFJ (Introverted/Intuitive/Feeling/Judging) personality type.  Later on in college, I ended up being an E/INFJ–I scored on the borderline between extrovert and introvert.

Only recently, though, have I heard of an animal personality test.  In fact, my brother-in-law recommended it.  He said it’s helped him to understand his wife better, and vice versa.  For fun and in light of my recent anniversary, I took the test as well.  Here are my results: Beaver-Retriever.  This means that I value close relationships, enjoy commitment, and think logically.  (My husband hasn’t taken it yet, so we’ll see if it helps us interact better in the future.)

As a writer, I hope my personality shines through my work.  I like reading the same authors over and over again because of their unique outlook.  On the other hand, I don’t want my writer’s tone to overtake my characters’ voices.

Here’s a link to the animal personality test.  Take it, too, and let me know how you score.

** (Make sure to click on the “No, I don’t want to sign up. Just give me my results!” button.) 


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  1. Since I love finding out who others think I am I took the test. Thought I’d get close to the horse world (that’s the year I’m born into), but came up with quite a surprise.

    I’m a lion. “Lions may be a little bossy sometimes, but that’s okay… they make great leaders that are driven by what they believe in, aren’t afraid of a challenge, and won’t give up without a fight. Lions tend to be reliable friends and great parents.” Had a little Otter thrown in too. A fun test.

  2. Dan, the Nice Guy says

    I took the test and guess what, I’m a Golden Retriever/Lion/Beaver!
    Did it come close to what you think I would be?

  3. I was a blend of beaver, lion, & golden retriever. Sounded about right to me! This was a lot of fun Jennifer!

  4. Hi, Jennifer! I really enjoyed the test. Not so much the result, but – there I am – Beaver-Retriever. I scored both at 66%, so I’m obviously a mixture of those two :-)
    Thanks for sharing it!

  5. Hi Mariya,
    Thanks for participating! It’s so interesting that people are getting equal scores. I’m definitely more of a Retriever.


  1. […] rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig. Each exhibits a different personality based on your birth year. As a kid, I remember seeing the zodiac printed on paper placemats in […]

  2. […] the center, though. I’m disappointed to learn that the meat does not come from an ox (a great Chinese zodiac symbol)–it used to, but nowadays, the cuts are from […]

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