Lifescapes Gallery

13 / Jun / 2012
A Picture is Worth 5000 Years!
Man and Elephant, Kabini Photograph: Dr. Bishan Monnappa Story: Rajesh Ramaswamy

A Picture is Worth 5000 Years!

It’s a bond that has endured over 5000 years, through epochal moments in history and eras of relative calm that lay between the seismic cultural faults that defined human civilization. In fact, Eric Scigliano, in his iconic tome on the ‘man-animal’ bond, has propounded the theory that elephants may have been ‘nursemaids’ to human evolution, having shaped history, art, religion and popular culture like no other animal has. For those of us in India, who’ve grown up with elephants being part of our peripheral vision, this only provides scientific sanction of what we’ve known all along. Elephants have, since time immemorial, been both elevated as objects of worshipful wonder and brought down to earth as megatonne hauling machines. In between, they’ve provided many an army with the ‘shock and awe’ factor to plough through the opposition infantry and render numerical superiority meaningless. In times of peace, they’ve been the civil engineer’s greatest ally, multitasking as bulldozers that clear forests, cranes that lift loads and trucks that are transporters across rough terrain. Any discussion on elephants will be incomplete without factoring in their human alter egos: the Mahouts, whose bond with their elephants begins from the time they’re born. These hardy men have been, throughout history, the sole custodians of an almost sacred covenant between man and mammal, and continue to man that bridge, to this day. The picture above features the inimitable Meenakshi, the resident elephant at our resort, communing with the man in her life, the mahout at Orange County, Kabini. Guests who’ve made her acquaintance often remark on how such a powerful animal can yet be so gentle and caring, and we know a lot of them come back only to renew that bond with her. A bond that’s been 5000 years in the making!

We at Orange County have loved sharing this story with you, and shall bring you one every fortnight, as part of our Responsible Tourism Initiatives to raise awareness about the nature and culture of the environments we operate in.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, June 13th, 2012 at 7:27 am and is filed under Culture, Mammals . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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User Comments
  1. Savita Venkatesh says:

    Do we really get to see all these birds and animals in Kabini ???????? I need a confirmation !

  2. happy nusatia says:

    I want to go there. . .amazing

  3. happy nusatia says:

    Amazing picture. . .

  4. Eric says:

    Wonderful. Thanks Orange County.

  5. Sarath Champati says:

    Amazing picture, which truly captures the Spirit of Elephant and Man and also the pristine beauty of Kabini!

  6. Sameer R. Rao says:

    Magical image that captures the mood and the man-elephant relationship beautifully.

  7. seema karmokar says:

    Awsome photo….!Gud to know that u update and share these nice stuffs.I have gone to orange county coorg and now kabini is tempting me…!.kabini I am gonna be there…!YAAHOOH.

  8. Seshadri, Srikanth says:

    This picture is so beautiful. I love it!!

  9. Vikram Chandrashekhar says:

    I’ve never been to Orange County and I’m not very sure how I got on this list. Even so, unlike most advertising, I’m happy I did. Your newsletters are very well written – sometimes humorous and always informative. I make it a point to read them whenever they come in. Definitely makes Orange County a preferred accommodation whenever I do manage to plan a trip! Great stuff and keep writing.

  10. Vibha says:

    Simply beautiful! Thank you for sharing

  11. kajal says:

    This pic is awesome and symbolize the relation between man and animals. It is a very old relation but now people have forgotten the relation. I remember my old memories of childhood, when I use to go to my village and the sunset makes the view more good and gives a calmness to the heart.

  12. Aline Dobbie says:

    What an evocative picture which reminds me vividly of the sunsets at Orange County, Kabini that I have experienced and photographed which can be seen in http://picasaweb.google.com/alinedobbie for all my galleries on Orange County Resorts which I fully endorse to potential Indian tourists/travellers. Home from home to us Dobbies.

  13. Niraj says:

    Just Beautiful !!! The pic above brings such a calmness with it, as if you are at that very place, looking at the beautiful bonding of Elephant & Mahout in the backdrop of mesmerizing sunset………!!! Hat’s off to Dr. Bishan !!! Thank you OrangeCounty for sharing this……

  14. Narayanan Raju says:

    Awesome photograph in silhouette and an equally great writeup, as usual!

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