Amazing intelligence in animals—Elephants journey to pay their respects

This short story was first published in the Temple City Star on 22 February, 2018

“Perhaps measuring animal intelligence by comparing it to human intelligence isn’t the best litmus test” — Ingrid Newkirk

We’ve learned, even as children, that elephants are supposed to have a good memory, but that’s not the only attribute they possess. Elephants are also very respectful, and they can show gratitude for kindness offered them.

For example, Lawrence Anthony, born 17 September, 1950 in Johannesburg, is a legend in Africa. Author of three books, he’s also known as The Elephant Whisperer because of his many charitable deeds in rescuing animals, including elephants. Although no elephants were involved in this particular rescue, he played an influential role in the rescue of the Baghdad Zoo animals during the United State’s invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Anthony died on March 7th, 2012 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Now for the interesting part! The African elephants sensed Anthony’s passing, so two days after his death, led by two large matriarchs, a total of 31 elephants patiently, solemnly, walked slowly, reverently, in single file, over 12 hours, to get to his house to pay their respects. They stayed 2 days and 2 nights without eating (fasting), then made their long journey back to their home territories.

Yes, Virginia, “Something in the universe is greater and deeper than what we’re superficially led to believe!”

About Albert Schindler

I was born on the 27th of February, 1931, on a farm near Hubbard, Saskatchewan. As far back as I can remember I had a spirit that would not stay earthbound. In junior high, I remember taking first place for a short story in which I described my terrifying encounter with a dinosaur. In outer space – that is, when the teacher wasn’t directly speaking to me, I went where Buck Rogers wouldn’t dare go. I was more of a Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes type of guy, with my own, personal, very powerful, transmogrifyer always at the ready. In my ‘teens and twenties, I pushed aside my Calvin alter ego in favour of making a living and didn’t take seriously again my ‘writer’s bug’ until my late 30s. I still saw that the world as full of exciting things to learn and investigate, which my writing reflected in the several articles and a couple of short fiction pieces that I wrote and sold, including over 30 children’s radio plays for Alberta’s ACCESS Radio. Unfortunately, I abandoned my budding writing career in favour of starting my own business as a sign painter. Now that I can officially call myself ‘retired,’ I plan to resume my writing career, only this time, writing mostly fiction. Why fiction? I have lead a great, adventurous life in which I made many mistakes (the ‘adventure’ in life), that have taught me some very important lessons and allowed my spirit to grow to unimaginable proportions, inconceivable to me while still in my thirties. In fiction, I believe, one can adventure into both the inner and outer consciousness of man and the universe to infinite levels where only the boldest dare peak. Convention holds that article writing has to be factual – oh, you can be creative in how you present your information, but ‘fact’ (whatever that means) still must have its parameters in article writing, whereas fiction is limited only by the size of a writer’s spirit, and so far, I haven’t been able to fathom my limit.
This entry was posted in Animals, Inteligence, Points to Ponder, Spirituality and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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