Walking in the company of the elephants!
The elephants teaches me that life is a mystery, and that I, all of us, are invited to live life every day as the adventure and gift it is. I am grateful to walk in the company of elephants, an adventurous, challenging, joyful and inspiring walk. We have been walking for a long time now and on our walk met many many other creatures. Some we only stopped for a short meeting, while others we walk for a longer time with. Sometimes our paths cross each other again and we get the opportunity to meet again and learn even more. In every meeting I have the opportunity to learn something, if I just open my heart and want to meet, which was difficult until I reconnected the contact, which was so long lost, in me.
To walk with the elephants is to walk in the present, in contact with life that flows in, through, and around us. When I walk in the present, I am just a being, one among all the other animals that walk here on Mother Earth. When I was walking without the company of the elephants, the other animals fled and did not allow me to get close. They knew I was someone to be afraid of, because I was unconsciously afraid of them and of myself. When I walk with the elephants, I am welcomed as one of them, one of all animals that live in respect, for and with each other. We are all beings living right here and now. Some of us fly, others swim, or walk on a different number of legs… but we know that we all have our place in Mother Earth as a whole.
We walk out in high grass and bushes and I have no idea what is hidden in the thickets, but I am in trust. I know that when I walk with the elephants, I am one with all life, and those who want to meet me will turn out, sooner or later, even if they hide for a while. When the time comes, we meet and share our gifts with each other. We all have different gifts to contribute to this earth in this time.
We are in contact and enjoying the walk, experience the scents of wild sage, hear the crickets play and the birds sing, an African Fish Eagle is heard in the distance. Suddenly, a flapping of the ears, what is perceived? We get closer together, and see, yes, there on the hill he lies, the male lion. He has seen us and lets us see his peace and pride. Below the hill lies his family enjoying their siesta. We are also calm and relaxed, knowing that they are no danger to us where they lie. They are full and satisfied after a successful hunt, where they hunt a prey for their survival, and no more. They take life, to give life. They have something to teach us humans about it. We thank them for the meeting and continue our walk.
We are now coming out into more open terrain. The walk becomes easier, and we can relax more when we have open areas around us. We aim for the water hole in front of us, thirsty after the walk. Water is vital for all of us, and we are grateful that we have access to clean clear water to drink, which is not a matter of course. When there is an abundance, it is easy to forget that drought also occurs. But the elephants remember and know how to find water even in times of drought, water deeply buried beneath the surface.
We leave the water hole behind us and continue our walk. Most of the time our walk is about eating and socializing. Now the sun is rising in the sky and it is burning, we need to cool off and protect ourselves during the hottest hours. We all have different ways of protecting ourselves. For an elephant, nothing beats a refreshing bath, followed by mud pack.
We humans also like to hide behind different masks to protect ourselves, but are we as aware as the elephants of the reasons for this? During the walk, I get the opportunity to explore the masks I hide me behind and how liberating, but also with horror-mixed delight, it can feel to undress me “naked”. Together with the elephants, it is safe for me to explore the masks. Different animals have made me see different masks I have used to hide who I really am, all to fit in and belong and get love. Sometimes I pretended to be a zebra who hoped to blend into the crowd and confuse with my disguise, not to be seen and become a victim of predators.
Sometimes I was a giraffe, who look down on everything and everyone from its superior position. One, as I saw it then, lovely place with a distance where I could be a spectator to the life that passed. Confident, as I thought, that I could figure out how everything would be. Or a cute bear who just longed to be hugged, but who bit off if someone dared to get too close…
We continue forward on our walk and pass over a river when suddenly there is a roar and a lot of splashing. An angry hippopotamus emerges from the depths and roars.
We got too close to him, hidden as he was in the water, we entered his territory. We hurry up and respectfully pull away from his place and realize that yes, we got too close, and he got scared. And fear is sometimes expressed as aggression. We got out of the water and up on the beach bed. Stops, breathes, and sorts out what is our fear and what is his. And we thank the hippopotamus for we got to experience the pure, and purifying, power of fear in the body. It feels good to know that he marks his territory and that we next time can choose to cross the river with respect to his territory. Because we do not want the hippos any harm, nor any other beings, but sometimes we forget our size and power.
I am grateful to, more and more, understand that sometimes, when I am unconscious, I enter other people’s territory, their space on earth. Unconsciously, I have also let others into my space so that in the end I did not know what is mine or other’s “space”, feelings, thoughts, etc. To expand the consciousness and to trust my body has been a long journey, a journey that will never end. There are always new meetings and opportunities for more expansion. But first I needed to understand that I have the right to my own “territory”, and how it is experienced in my body. The elephants taught me the meaning of being grounded, “Elephants stand their ground”. And we are not afraid to stand in our power, when needed.
But some people scare me, and the elephants. And it is the people who want something for their own personal gain, such as our territory, ivory or our friend’s rhinoceros horns. It is cruel and then we can also become dangerous and attack, to protect ourselves. Because we remember people who have hurt us. To destroy the trust between us is done in an instant, to rebuild it can take a long time if we are not in contact, with ourselves. But we do not want to hurt anyone for our own sake, we only show how those who hurt us behave. When we get to live in our territory, we live in respect with and for others. Everyone is welcome and included.
It is painful to realize that in my luggage from my family I also carry with me ivory that I do not know what to do with. It is so old that I can get proof that it is “old and legally purchased” according to current laws established by humans, but what does it help the elephants and me? I believe that we all carry, consciously or unconsciously, different “things” that no longer match who we are when we open ourselves to love. But even these darker parts are also mine to take responsibility for. I am talking to elephant researchers who are deeply involved in stopping the ivory trade, and they do not have the answers either. And that is what I always did, looking for the answers out there of “professionals”. Now I am talking with the elephants about what we should do with the ivory, it is “they” who can give me the answers. The elephants have been killed and, these on one hand beautiful but on the other hand horrible objects are existing, as a reminder of how we humans took what we wanted for our own gain. For me, it is painful to admit that this is how I, we have done and many of us continue to do. We take what we want without considering the consequences for other living beings. I am grateful that the elephants want to continue walking with me despite my “luggage”. They want to share their wisdom with me and the humanity. Because they know that it is, we humans who must open our hearts and become aware of what we do, and do not do, for and with Mother Earth. They know we have to start with ourselves. We can not change anyone else, but when we change ourselves, the energy flows in us, we create change in all the systems we operate in, in everything.
To walk with your feet firmly on the ground and open to Mother Earth’s gifts is a way to reconnect, with ourselves and all living beings. My first conscious encounter with the elephants changed my life forever. I experienced a deep contact in me, in contact with myself I became in contact with others in a whole new genuine way. Today I understand that for many years I was not in contact with myself,, my soul, the genuine Self in me, and when I am not in this contact, I am not in real contact with any other living being either. The gratitude is infinite to the elephants who let me into their world, and shows me what the world looks like through their eyes. They see, and they see through, they see what I did not see and things I still do not see. They see me as who I AM beyond all masks. They love me as the human I am, with all faults and shortcomings I have. I exhale and let go of demands I have made on myself, e.g. to be perfect and not to make mistakes. Demands that have kept me from living Life. They show me the way to love!
Welcome to walk with us to open for your and our contact, and to open for the love of Life!