Elephants mourning

05/23/2012

Anyone who is amazed and mesmerized by elephants as I am, already knows: they mourn their dead. How else to say it? I am not going to include the common disclaimer ‘allegedly’. It has been witnessed and studied by hundreds of students and professors, and shown on countless documentaries for us all to witness. They possess empathy, a characteristic previously believed to only be held by humans.

A wise and gentle soul passed away suddenly this spring, on March 7th. His name was Lawrence Anthony and he was known as the Elephant Whisperer. In a highly publicized event that is still capturing the worldwide attention of us humans, two different herds of elephants travelled for 12 hours to arrive at the family compound in Africa, named ‘Thula Thula’.

Lawrence Anthony spent a lot of time with both these herds, sincerely loving them. With one herd in particular he helped in bravely calming their angry fears towards humans so that they could release their earlier moniker of ‘rogues’. He worked hard to help save them from being ‘shot as pests’.

As Rabbi Leila Gal Berner, Ph.D. put it so eloquently: “A good man dies suddenly, and from miles and miles away, two herds of elephants, sensing that they had lost a beloved human friend, moved in a solemn, almost ‘funeral’ procession to make a call on the bereaved family at the deceased man’s home. If there ever were a time, when we can truly sense the wondrous ‘interconnectedness of all beings’ it is when we reflect on the elephants of Thula Thula. A man’s heart’s stops, and hundreds of elephants’ hearts are grieving. This man’s oh-so-abundantly loving heart offered healing to these elephants, and now, they came to pay loving homage to their friend.”

All of life on this planet is much more powerfully connected than our minds can begin to comprehend. This precious blue and green globe is a beautifully sacred home for all of us here. Let us remember to feel gratitude in our hearts, that we are here, that we are Home. If we are here today, we are meant to be. We are meant to Love One Another. And this includes the animal kingdom, and indeed Nature itself.

Namaste. 

 

The Elephant Whisperer:
My Life with the Herd in the African Wild 

Amazon review: “The Elephant Whisperer is a heartwarming, exciting, funny, and sometimes sad account of Anthony’s experiences with these huge yet sympathetic creatures. Set against the background of life on an African game reserve, with unforgettable characters and exotic wildlife, it is a delightful book that will appeal to animal lovers and adventurous souls everywhere.”

View it here on Amazon.com

(A note: I only include Amazon links in many of my posts simply because I love books. I want you to be able to see what I am referring to easily and effortlessly. Checking second-hand bookstores is something I do frequently. Libraries rock. But Amazon is awesome too. I’m just a fan of access to books)

23 responses to Elephants mourning

  1. 

    “If there ever were a time, when we can truly sense the wondrous ‘interconnectedness of all beings’ it is when we reflect on the elephants of Thula Thula.”

    ‘interconnectedness of all beings’ <— those words are music to my ears. What a lovely thought ❤ ❤

    I appreciate this story. It warms my heart ❤ ❤ ❤

    Have you seen this?

    Grieving Dog Refuses to leave dogs' side
    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/sideshow/grieving-dog-refuses-leave-dead-dog-side-phoenix-142129536.html

    • 

      Oh my gosh.. that story brought tears to my eyes. Profound. Thank you so much for this comment and like and for sharing this link. I recall a story: after a tsunami a yellow lab/cross was found floating on a bed of debris and while it was doing poorly but was relatively okay, it would NOT come onto the boat until they rescued its friend, a much more ill dog. Compassion in the animal kingdom is everywhere. It is time we looked. Thank you Hermelynda. So good to hear from you.

  2. 

    You welcome my friend. Thank you for your visit as well.

    This is why we all love the companionship of dogs and cats. They are the purest leaders of example. The purest form of unconditional love and loyalty which human beings need to see in life in order to stay humble, loving and loyal as well.. ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

  3. 

    What a beautiful story! Thank you for sharing it!

  4. 

    Gina, thank you for sharing this wonderful story. Elephants are such incredible beings. I’ve never completely understood why, but whenever I’m around them, I get really choked up. There’s just something so powerful about their energy and intelligence. This story helps explain some of those feelings I’ve always had…they have to be powerfully telepathic!

    • 

      Cathy thank you for this honest and wonderfully true comment. I actually cried ALL DAY when I learned of this story. They are simply SO amazing. Our whole world is so amazing. So much more magical and precious than most people realize. I work on giving thanks constantly, like breathing.

  5. 

    That is one of the most beautiful stories I’ve ever heard! I had the wondrous opportunity to feed an elephant and stand face to face … simply amazing. The tenderness that they are capable, when they have the ability to crush just about everything around. Thank you for sharing this.

    • 

      Wow.. I would love to have the opportunity to feed an elephant. It must have been amazing. Thank you for your kind comment!

      • 

        The craziest thing was that I was instructed to hold my fingers beyond just being flat … they said that the finger-like tips are an elephant’s trunk are strong enough to actually take your finger off … and the elephant wouldn’t even know! Amazing that just the very tip of their trunk is that strong! Still, she seemed incredibly gentle when I fed her!

        • 

          Wow! That is so amazing… such strength yet such tenderness in the tip of their trunk. I am so happy for you that you got to have one eat from your hand! Thank you so kindly for your comment here. Namaste. Gina

  6. 

    Wow, I hadn’t heard of this story. It’s amazing to witness so much compassion among animals. Thank you for sharing, Gina 🙂

    • 

      Thank you Nezha, for your comment here. I am glad to help share this story to more of us. I only learned recently also. 🙂

  7. 

    Animals’ love always touches me deep in heart. Thanks for sharing this beautiful story.

  8. 

    Wow This is awesome. From my Hospice years I certainly experienced pets sensing the changes in the home of the dying. I think this may be a step above that. Thank You for sharing this!

  9. 
    Stephanie Jill Rudd 05/24/2012 at 7:47 am

    Thankyou so much. All Life is Connected and One in Essence. Beautiful Post and my favourite animals.

    • 

      Hello Stephanie Jill, it is wonderful to have your lovely comment here, and it has allowed me to visit your blog. Such kindness and wisdom you share! Thank you kindly, Gina

  10. 

    Beautiful post…thank you!

  11. 

    Thank you for this beautiful story. Many years back I saw a documentary about one elephant herd that the filming team followed for two years. One really old elephant died and one year later the herd came back to that place where he died and took up his tusk, caressing it and then passed it on to the next until each one had it. It was almost shocking to see “animals” remembering and honoring one of their own and performing almost some kind of a ritual.
    I also find the spiritual aspect of an elephant really fascinating. In the West the Hindu culture is often mistaken as a polytheism culture, but actually all their Gods and Goddesses are seen as the various aspects of only one God. And there is the one aspect of the elephant-headed God, Ganesha, the aspect of the eternal child, representing wisdom, innocence, humbleness and good memory. So maybe no wonder that somehow elephants seem to touch something deeper in us that makes us wonder…
    And I feel the same like “mycoachproject” – animals do have the power to touch us deeply in the heart. Again I am reciting something that I heard in India 🙂 – that animals are directly connected with the Divine, so whatever they do they are innocent about it. Whereas human beings have been given the freedom to chose… it is this innocence that we are drawn to, and many times yearning for to see more of it in this world and among people, at least me :-))))
    Dear Gina, your blog is really wonderful and inspiring! And additionally reading all these beautiful comments just makes my day 🙂 Thank you all again for sharing…

    • 

      What a delightful and thoughtful comment! Thank you so much for sharing this wise and insightful information. I know I feel a strong connection with animals but your information here brightens my heart as it informs. Beautiful. I may have seen that same documentary years back, or of course it has undoubtedly been filmed repeatedly, but I always cry when I see elephants mourning. When I learned of those two herds travelling and joining at the compound where a beloved human had lived to mourn him, I cried all day – off and on – just sweet tears suddenly streaming at the magic and wonder of this amazing world that we are so incredibly blessed to call Home. And I feel truly blessed to have lovely new friends such as yourself, from all over the world, uniting in our shared journey to ever greater insight, wholeness, and peace. Blessings to you dear one. Namaste. ~Gina