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Inspirational Messages about Life from an Elephant

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If you're an animal lover like me then you will easily appreciate that Elephants often give us inspirational messages.

I regard Elephants as equals, different and unique as we are. From my experiences in Africa I know without a shadow of a doubt that Elephants, in fact animals in general are way more clever than we are when it comes to living authentically. Let me give you an unusual example. I was in Zimbabwe visiting a ranch where they were breeding black Rhino. This was back in 2011. I was there gathering some photos of rhino and elephant. I spent two weeks with a small herd of Elephants who roamed freely across the ranch. I'd go out in mid morning and return in the mid afternoon with hundreds of images. I was also there to connect and get to know them as individuals.

The family of Elephants were made up of two huge bulls in their prime, one was the ‘dominant' and stood 9 feet at the shoulder and the ‘Uncle' stood about 8 feet at the shoulder. The other two were the female and her young calf, so four in total. One time I stood in front of the two Bulls and decided to see if I could connect telepathically. I know that may sound strange but Elephants, in fact many animals are actually experts at it. It was me who needed more practice. So I quietened my mind and focused on the ‘Uncle' Bull. I relaxed and was open to see what would happen. Within a couple of minutes I felt this overwhelming sense that he knew I had shifted my perspective. He instantly responded by focusing all his attention on me. The exchange of attention was evident. I could ‘see him'. Think Avatar! In that moment he stretched out his trunk to reach me. Both of us were focused on each other and the exchange taking place. It was an incredible connection as equals, completely understanding each other. I felt he ‘saw me' as well. No words were spoken by me nor sounds coming from him but a deep knowing was present. It lasted about 10 minutes. His acknowledgement was ‘I know you know… and … I know you know that I know that you know … etc.

Now let me share some incredible things about Elephants before I share the moral of the story..

To receive the inspirational messages from Elephants we need to first understand who they really are. Getting to know them really does require us to get out of our heads and into our hearts. I believe we could learn far more from them than they can learn from us. Elephants are unique, emotional, telepathic and super intelligent.

Did you know …

  • they are adept tool users,
  • they are cooperative problem solvers,
  • they have the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. and altruistic (selfless) comforting one another when upset,
  • they grieve for the loss of a loved one,
  • they celebrate life, I've seen a herd of elephants trumpet, twirl, embrace and touch when something grand happens like a big bull appears to find a mate or a baby is born,
  • they have a sense of self, they are self aware just like us,
  • they are intuitive,
  • they are emotionally intelligent, they have been known to protect and even save other species from harm or injury even humans,
  • they have long term as well as short term memories, as they say an Elephant never forgets,
  • they have aha moments just like us, I've seen this many times,
  • they communicate through vibrations and sound,
  • their strongest sense is their smell and touch,
  • they form social bonds that last a life time,
  • they cooperate between family members, elephant family members talk to one another with a combination of gentle chirps, thunderous trumpets and low-frequency rumbles undetectable to humans, as well as nudges, kicks and visual signals such as a tilt of the head or flap of the ear,
  • they deliberate among themselves, make group decisions and applaud their achievements,
  • they collaborate; when they prepare to do a group charge they all look to one another as if to say: ‘are we all together? are we ready to do this?’
  • they celebrate wins; with trumpeting, rumbling, lifting their heads high, clanking tusks together, intertwining their trunks,
  • they curl their trunk when they are unsure and they ponder a problem,
  • they make group decisions and support one another; living in an Elephant herd is all about unity and working together for the greater good,
    elephants often refuse to leave their sick and injured behind even if they are not related,
  • they often console each other in times of stress or anxiety and sadness.

What you may not know about Elephants

According to some sources including Wikipedia it was about 3 million plus years ago that Elephants and their extinct relatives such as the Woolly Mammoth formed their larger than life forms. Interestingly both humans and elephants adapted themselves to life in Africa's forests and Savannah roughly around the same time. Both migrated to Europe and Asia, as Louis Irwin of The University of Texas at El Paso explains: both humans and Elephants evolved to be mostly migratory and live in highly complex societies plus, and I like this bit; both developed complex forms of communication and thus developed a larger brain.

When I googled Elephant brain size I found numerous scientific references about Elephants having roughly 300 billion neurons compared to humans having about 90 billion. Elephants have very complex brains! So how could they not be the wise souls I've come to know them as.

So now you know Elephants better, you can be more open to receive their inspirational messages.

The inspirational message I received that day was that we are often so busy in our minds about how things should be or should happen that we miss out on the most extraordinary life experiences. We judge so easily whether someone or something is right or wrong. And so our world remains small and our life remains limited.

We need is to step into innocence .. become curious and fascinated and watch what happens.

In June 2018 10 people are invited to join me in Kenya to photograph and connect with Elephants and other wildlife. For more information contact me or download the brochure from the homepage.