Animal Spirit Totem – Elephant

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As most of us know, the elephant is the largest mammal living on the planet. There are two different types. There is the Indian elephant and the African elephant. The African is the larger of the two and has different ears than the Indian.

In India, elephants are revered and held in a place of honor. The Hindu God, Ganesha, usually has an elephant head. The kings were always riding elephants.

Lots of things we think we know about elephants are not really facts. For example, the whole elephant memory has been misconstrued. Elephants never forget someone who has harmed them or caused an injury. They are revenge seeking creatures. Also, elephants are not scared of mice. They respond to the sound, not the mouse itself. Elephants also mourn and display sorrow when another elephant dies. There isn’t some elephant graveyard or dying place like so many people have been told.

In the days of old, elephants were thought to be the physical embodiment of clouds. If this is your totem, you may want to lay on your back and watch clouds and cloud formations. They are symbolic of the separation between earth and sky. Cloud formations can and will speak to those who have an elephant totem.

As we all know, the most distinctive feature of the elephant is the trunk. The trunk compensates for an elephants poor eyesight. The trunk is where they learn about the world by smelling what is around them. This reminds us to pay attention to what is going on around us. The “something smells fishy” cliche applies here. Also, essential oils is something that people with an elephant totem may want to work with and research further. Aromatherapy will shift your consciousness. Elephants also say hello to each other by touching trunks.

An elephant’s tusks are obviously weapons and digging tools. As we all know, they are also highly desired by poachers. Ivory is something that a person with an elephant totem is often drawn to naturally.

Elephants divide their society by gender and age. Babies and females all live together, with an older female in charge. This embodies the child, mother, old crone energies and beliefs. Males only come into the herds for mating. However, males all live together in their own group. The older ones will always help the younger ones in their herds. They are a helpful society. They also are highly affectionate and loyal to each other.

Elephants are also highly patient beings. They are patient while teaching the young ones, or while waiting for the slower, older ones.

I will close with a personal story about an elephant and me. When my kids were little, I got front row seats to the circus. When the elephant parade came out, one of the biggest elephants in the whole bunch was stopped right in front of us. He was standing very still and I noticed that his eye rolled towards me. I looked at him and he looked at me with his right eye. We had a “moment” of connection. I thought and actually said out loud, “You could just step over this barrier and stomp on all of us. Yet, you choose to stand there, very still, waiting to be told to move forward. Do you eve know how power-full you are?”. The elephant blinked that big eye and literally nodded at me. His head bobbed up and down as if deliberately. I so wanted to reach out and touch him but I knew better. About that time, it was time for him to move on. As he was going around the oval he turned his head and looked straight at me, raised his trunk and made a very loud noise. I knew he was saying “Bye” to me. I felt honored…and sad. He was too magnificent to be caged and paraded. I never went to a circus again.


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