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 Post subject: Elephant Waves
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 3:14 am 

Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 12:14 am
Posts: 106
A Thai Mahout (elephant handler) leads two elephants into the sea for an enjoyable bath.


Unfortunately neither our garden or house is large enough to keep an elephant, but they do happen to be paradise for cats. (We’ll be getting to the big guys soon enough in this topic: PROMISE!) Numbers vary, right now we have two felines, and a while back some tellywatching family members were sharing a large sofa with Joshu, the big tom, he’s the size of a miniature lion, I’m told due to mixed Norwegian Forest Cat ancestry. So here were our girls, young and old keeping up a spirited chatter, as the beloved giant kitten was walking over and around us getting petted and a lot of attention, I too joined in with the fun as he rolled on his back, signaling it was time for his customary belly rub. Our actions/noise must have gotten him a tad over exited, because the next moment our darling furball was striking out playfully with razor-sharp claws extended. All us smart and superior homo sapiens EXPLODED off, leaving the soft and roomy sofa with its many pillows to a decidedly smug looking cat. As I too opted for a strategic rearguard maneuver something peculiar happened. For a moment Joshu stopped moving, and looked me straight into the eye. I had the strongest feeling he was saying something to me, like “What are you, a wuss? I’m just playing with’ya…” Weirdly, I had an overpowering sense of awe and shame, and then the moment passed.

I had a strong impression our tom Joshu was saying something to me, like “What are you, a wuss? I’m just playing with’ya…”

Now WHAT by the cat’s pajamas just happened to me. So unlike an Anthropomorphism (=attributing human qualities to animals), since to my observation Joshu himself seemed to initiate the still eye contact, while us humans all were moving and reacting to his earlier apparent aggressions. Amazingly (to me) the whiskered beast seemed to communicate to me his personal sense and awareness of the situation. And to his mind, we’all were acting darn silly. Wow…I keep remembering after that day: our cats hold a perspective of their very own (and why shouldn’t they!!).


Quickly exploring animals’ ‘perspective’, their unique view of reality further, I’m thinking of Tiger, a Calgary-Canada tom living with Lionel Adams who suddenly began climbing into mr. Adam’s bed and take his paw and drag it down his owner’s left side. The cat appeared to be adamant there was ‘something’ there. Adams, who has had a history of bronchitis, asthma and emphysema, took his concern over his pet diagnosis to the family doctor who took him serious enough to refer him to a specialist. An X-ray promptly led the doctors to detect a malignant cancer of the left lung, half a popcan-sized, which was then successfully removed. Needless to say Tiger got instant hero status, for potentially saving his master’s life.

Now meet Myrna Carillo who lost her beloved Shih-Tzu ‘Prince’ five years earlier, then moved homes four times. Imo nearly enough to shake off the Internal Revenue Service, and ought make it 100% impossible for a lowly Shih to ever find back his cherished human pack, his family, his home. But, nóóó dear readers…… somehow after five years furnose did show up on mrs. Carillo’s doorstep, incredulous woman and dog recognizing each other immediately, and Prince is now bonding with a new husband and two sons who entered her life after the Shih-Tzu was lost.

I am not wasting a moment to get to the point. If our pets are all that, performing amazing feats we can’t even yet begin to explain, haven’t we been like totally underestimating who and what they are? If you think I’m full of it, be my guest, YOU try: how does a cat detect lung cancer in the left lung? How does a doggy trace back his steps to a new (relocated) home?

Let’s find out…


Easy to see why keeping Elephants close to your home, and befriending them became associated with Blessings: elephants KNOW..... Credit: Photo by J-Hob

Elephants are able to tune into extremely low frequency soundwaves, known as Infrasound, by resting their trunks on the ground at right angles.

At 12:59 hours Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), December 26, 2004 a 9.0 magnitude earthquake, unseen to human eyes, violently lifts up the entire ocean floor off Sumatra’s coast, Indonesia. Buildings in Bangkok, capital of Thailand, begin shaking. Bangkok is 1,242 miles (nearly 2,000 km) away from the location of the quake. At Khao Lak, an idyllic Thai beach resort, it was first light around the time of the faraway quake, Mahouts always already making for their animals, when they noticed the elephants ‘crying’, an eery trumpet signal they had not heard before. Bear with me, but I’m proposing these animals appear to have ‘heard’ and start dramatically vocalizing the global tsunami events just as they were unfolding! As the blazing sun replaced tranquil night at Khao Lak, at 01.07 UTC, mere minutes after the quake, a sudden ‘tidal wave’ already left nine Indonesian villagers dead. At 01:23 UTC Sumatra gets hit by a tsunami, and inhabitants of Indonesian town Banda Aceh see 9 meter high waves coming at them fast, the wall of water and tons of accumulating soil/debris continuing for 4 kilometers inland.

The entire 24 minutes I just described, showing how the 2004 Tsunami began rippling outward, roughly coincide with the elephants sounding unusual wailing/crying signals. What did they hear, and what did the cry-like trumpet mean? Well, elephants call out and hear in infrasound, deep bass rumblings down to 14-35 hertz, well below human hearing, yet used to communicate between vastly distant herds and individual elephants. They use their ears and sensitive feet much like you and me, sensing airborne sound and ground vibration, but additionally can fine tune into these low frequency soundwaves by resting their trunks on the ground at right angles. As it happens, earthquakes too generate infrasound, with superfast seismic waves propagating outward at ten times the speed of sound, followed by slower, ‘true infrasound’ waves caused by ground motion at the quake’s epicenter. And yes, elephants must be able to sense hundreds of earthquakes happening all around them, even at great distance if powerful enough, every day of their lives. Research in the wild seems to indicate they (wisely) ignore nearly every one. (Any elephant who starts running away from each earthquake he hears, would be a really Big Idiot, and quickly die of exhaustion.) In the case of the Khao Lak elephants, it too seems most logical that they monitored the huge Sumatra quake, picked up the infrasound rippling across the globe through air, ground and the oceans, and correctly understood there was a TERRIBLE SHAKING going on, yet at too great a distance (1,242 miles or nearly 2,000 km) to directly affect them.

Click here to see the scale at which elephants must have heard and interpreted infrasound during the 2004 tsunami.

I believe instead they got first alarmed, vocalizing the ‘crying’ sounds around 01:23, just after the tsunami wave slammed into the rising seabed just off Sumatra’s coastline, pushing up the water into meters high waves devastating the land, killing hundreds of thousands. Never call an elephant a Dumbo. Faraway earthquakes (a dime a dozen) don’t kill people/animals….big tsunami waves rolling over land DO!! And the specific infrasound generated by a powerful tsunami hitting a rising seabed near land was enough to deeply unsettle these smart animals. Why would elephants ‘cry’ when detecting a great tsunami? Because this is the sound their ancestors have been hearing, the anguished expressions of grief and loss and suffering by humans during the aftermaths of untold tsunamis as long as elephants and men have lived in proximity. Simulated crying imo is nothing more than the word for Tsunami in Elephant Language. And the mahouts noticed, but did not comprehend the warning. They soothed and calmed the elephants’ agitation, and things indeed seemed to calm down. One hour later, at 02:23-33, while around Khao Lak the sea mirrors the heavens, children and parents happily splashing about at pure white beaches, Sri Lanka and Thailand get hit by the tsunami, and people start dying in large numbers. Now, into the idyllic, postcard-like atmosphere of Khao Lak the elephants once more start trumpeting the weird crying sounds. This time the mahouts calming efforts were in vain: working elephants, with tourists/mahouts on their back resolutely made for the hills, not stopping for anything or anyone, until reaching higher ground. Those animals kept chained up broke their chains, and followed suit going up and up, with bewildered mahouts running after them, thinking they had a herd of crazed elephants on their hands! As elephants, handlers and riding tourists made their way uphill, around 02:36 UTC, deadly tsunami waves could be seen off Khao Laks coast, thundering inland with the awful results we all have seen on TV.

Bet those standing safely on a hill with the elephants felt (briefly) lucky (at least until reality sunk in). It isn’t so hard to understand why keeping Elephants close to your home, and befriending them became associated with Blessings. These big fellers KNOW stuff…


Plenty of mechanisms are being suggested to explain how all manner of animals perform incredible feats, demonstrate insight and awareness that ought to move us to humility. Finding their way across land, oceans and skies, detecting precursors to earthquakes/tsunamis, and above all communicating to us they too are living persons with emotion/souls. For this topic I’ll stick with cats, dogs and elephants, but don’t hesitate to extrapolate to all living things. I predict there will be no end to the miracles you will discover.

It makes a hell of a lot of sense to study animals, to learn from them, and even to befriend them…as some lucky Khao Lak mahouts found out, it can save your life.

Let’s be done with these angelic elephants first. They have the lowdown on Tsunamis due to maintaining a collective memory of infrasound, developed over a thousand generations, many of which lived through great waves and floods by recognizing the exact seismic signature of an approaching killer tsunami, and without hesitation heading for higher ground.

Lost pets performing impossible homing feats, like Shih-Tsu ‘Prince’, are able to do so, reuniting with their beloved master/human family, because unlike humans they never lost their connection with the Spirit World and the Astral Plane. Actually, we too travel many weird worlds, spirit worlds as we sleep and dream, as well as leave our body to go ‘places’, however, full awareness of this has become repressed in modern cultures. Dogs will be…well..dogs, and simply do what their nature allows them. They live in more than one realm at the same time, will occasionally see dead people (…naturally…!!), hop universes now and then, as well as rise out of their sleeping form to meet other doggies, and their human friends in spirit form on the astral plane. Homing in on the spirit of their master on the Astral, they glimpse wherever he/she has a home on good’ole Earth. I believe that’s how they do it, how they find their way across immense distance and time.

Finally, our kittens charm us to distraction, radiate to us they are deep and mysterious PERSONS, because….Duh…..that’s what they actually are. (Extrapolate to other pets, all animals, if you please!!) I have come to believe cats have souls and fates like humans, and they come into our lives to fulfill a purpose. Important: such ‘higher purposes’ MUST include a steady supply of kibble and lots of tasty tidbits & assorted snacks. Sometimes cats tune into their owner's state of health, using especially their sense of smell and hearing: they may detect signs of cancer, heart-disease or impending seizures, and try to warn us. Turning it around, I came into the lives of my pets to learn their secrets, what makes them tick, and to be a good, doting mistress, applying strong leadership, and never using punishment. Cats suggest to me this world is full of life forms just like me (only different ;P ).

My conclusion: it makes a hell of a lot of sense to study animals, to learn from them, and even to befriend them…as some lucky Khao Lak mahouts found out, it can save your life.




Timeline 2004 Tsunami

Khao Lak witness account

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