Although the elephant is much like any other animal in your dreams, it tends to represent the power and influence of the potent forces active in your body and mind, that if you relate to well bring about health and success, and if badly illness and ruin. For example the elephant can refer to the powerful responses in us such as fear, sex, survival, and the power of imagination to evoke great anxiety or great pleasure. Often our personality evokes these forces in a destructive and disorderly way. A person may have read an article about cancer for instance and develop a great fear they have the disease, causing much stress and actual physical illness in some degree.

So some elephant dreams revolve around how we relate to this power, and the attempt of the elephant to place us on its back to direct it. So in general it is your potential or energy. Also depicts your big self, or the power of the unconscious and your cosmic, eternal nature. The tremendous inner power of the unconscious, with a mahout, or conscious direc­tion or co-operation can achieve wonderful things. Ganesh, the Indian elephant god, represents the remover of all obstacles, the power of life manifesting. He is the god of good fortune.

So it is the totality of yourself rather than awareness of only the conscious ego. It is what is referred to in Christianity as the ‘spirit’, the influence that can heal or instruct, thus power from our unconscious; strength; unforgiveness from association of long memory; patience; fidelity; intelligence or wisdom of the unconscious. In some ways the elephant has similar qualities to the crocodile in its link with the collective unconscious. The difference is that the elephant does not usually in dreams seek to consume you like the crocodile or alligator. It therefore depicts a relationship with one’s incredible potential that can lead to directing or working with the potent forces of the unconscious. See: alligator.

If we run from the elephant: Being afraid of our own strength or inner power. The question is, can we meet this enormous energy in ourselves enough to direct it? Sometimes represents the collective unconscious.

Elephant’s trunk: Sometimes a sexual symbol, the penis. As such it is usually referring to how your sexual feelings are being influenced by the great spirit of Life acting on you – the cosmic power of the spirit. Also the trunk illustrates the ability to get or reach out for ones own needs – see example below.

Example: During an experience arising from the use of psilocybin, I had a very clear mental image of a baby elephant. It was like a bas-relief made out of clay, but mobile. I could see that the baby elephant had some problem with its trunk, and I wondered why my unconscious had produced this image so clearly and what it meant. Immediately the image disappeared and a series of associations arose unbidden. It was that the elephant actually ate with its mouth, but it had to reach out for everything with its trunk. As a baby the elephant would suckle, but as it matured it would have to learn to get its own needs with its trunk, therefore the problem was about me reaching out for my own needs. Danny.

Example: The I experienced the elephant as a powerful force which I intuitively sense and feel some anxiety about. I felt the elephant as a powerful influence which works below the level of normal consciousness, which acts upon masses, although it obviously influences individuals. But it influences individuals unconsciously, so they are inclined in a direction along with many others. As it enters my life I sense it seems to be an influence which might direct me into a communion with this deeper, more inclusive or integrative influence. Thus my personal activities might have added to them this influence which co-ordinates the processes of life, and adds to ones small endeavours the stamp or power of a grander life – the spirit. The life of the spirit I sensed here as the ‘company’ where I was accepted as a worker in this wider organisation behind life.

Example: I was on a road and noticed that a magnificent elephant had appeared. It had enormous tusks and ears, the latter being powdered with blue dust and adding tremendously to its impact. As it was coming in my direction I was frightened and began to run. I ran off the road, over a fence into a field. I thought the elephant would be stopped by the fence. It wasn’t. It walked straight through it after me. Then I tried to climb a low bank back to the road. The elephant was drawing nearer and I was so frightened I could hardly move to climb the bank. The elephant caught hold of me and I suddenly realised it wasn’t going to destroy me, but wanted, despite it being a magnificent and powerful beast, to sit me on its back. I was still frightened however and ran to a doctor’s surgery. The elephant came and, thrusting its trunk into the surgery, drew me out to it. AT.

Example: I looked out of a window and noticed a wild elephant in full charge. It ran past the end of the building and I went to the opposite window, seeing it charge another elephant. After the impact it seemed to be a strange mixture, in my mind, of elephant and rhinoceros. It then stood shaking with sexual motions, until a great deal of sperm came out and its tension was released. AT.

The above two examples illustrate firstly the enormous power of the elephant and how it is not usually an attacking or destructive power, and in the second example it shows the link between that power and the sexual drive.


Idioms: White elephant; pink elephants; rogue elephant. See: the self under archetypes.


Useful Questions and Hints:

If I imagine myself as the elephant what do I experience?

What powerful influence am I meeting or directing at the moment?

Am I aware in any way of the enormous impact the collective power of society and my own unconscious has on me?

What is my relationship with the elephant and what does this depict in my life?

See Do you imagine that is a real creature – Avoid Being VictimsYou are the Projector



-RupinderKaur 2017-01-12 2:42:42

I saw a mother father and baby elephant in dream.By some means baby elephant came to my house and got stuck wasnot able to go back and i was trying to push and rescue him but mother elephamt was angry as she thought that i have kidnapped or hurting her baby.But however father elephant after seeing me got awar that i am.trying to rescue his baby but mother elephnt was very angry and was pushing nd breaking things.Then father elephant tried to stop motherbut whe he failed he pierced or hit her with his sharp tooth in the back of the mother elephant to stop her.after he did this mother elephant calm down and i gave them their baby and they went away happily even baby was happy with me.
Please tell me what this dream was about

    -Tony Crisp 2017-01-12 11:22:00

    Hi – I must take time to upgrade the dream dictionary, so must halt from answering your posts – I started revising the dictionary in 2006, and haven’t neared the end yet. I believe someone else may start giving interpretations.

    So, for a while I urge you to read http://dreamhawk.com/approaches-to-being/i-am-no-longer-interpreting-dreams/ – It describes ways that can help you. And often it would help too if you looked at http://dreamhawk.com/approaches-to-being/questions-2/#Summing


    You have a lot of potential that is still not developed. Probably because the influence you had in your youth was not encouraging – your mother. But the strong influence from your father has freed you to grow and further express your potential.

-Nan 2016-10-11 17:08:22

I had a dream that me, my father, mother and younger brother were on jungle and I saw a herd of elephants passing in front of me and there were approximately 20 elephants from youngest to eledest. And the baby elephants were of different colours:- 1 yellow, 1 pink, 1 green etc. And even I hold one baby elephant as he was so cute.
The whole scene was beautiful.
I wonder what that dream meant.

    -Tony Crisp 2016-10-14 9:05:33

    Nan – The meaning of your dream is all about your sense and experience of beauty and your ability to relate to the natural in you and around you. Both of those are precious abilities you have, so take care of them.

    The elephants also represent an enormous power that you can call on – the power of Life. It is the great unknown that keeps you alive, digests your food, beats your heart and the thousands of other actions you are not aware of. When you need help for serious things, you can ask for it. Remember that Life in you gave you intelligence, and life itself is intelligent, so it understands your needs.


-jools 2016-09-11 3:53:34

if some one can shed some light on this one…”I saw an old leathered skin woman who looked harsh and cranky , she walked up to bull who was just standing minding his own, the old woman started to antagonize the bull, shouting at it and then hitting the bull with her cane…eventually the bull lost its temper and crushed the old lady but while doing so the bull morphed into an elephant who with all its tree like legs just pounded the woman into the ground…i was astounded to see such a thing and felt satisfied also that the woman got her just deserved ! …anyone ?

    -Tony Crisp 2016-09-12 13:47:07

    Jools – An old woman in dreams often represents you mother – especially the part about satisfaction about seeing he destroyed. Any hurts we may have experienced, any feelings of desertion, not being cared for, in child’s young world of intense feelings are stored and often lived out in our dreams.

    One of the tragedies of adult life is that you may have forgotten your childhood. You may still remember events and dates, but the intensity of feelings, the real insight into the world of childhood may be lost. Can you remember how it was to live before time began for instance? The sense of time is learned. Prior to being able to speak, and previous to your concept of time, you lived in eternity. Days lasted forever. A week was infinite in its multitude of impressions and experience.
    You arrived at some memory of those feelings in the dream, and had some satisfaction in remembering. See http://dreamhawk.com/inner-life/your-inner-child/


-Aby 2016-08-23 10:24:02

Hi.. So I dreamt of an elephant running full speed in the sand dunes in a desert. while running he faces a steep dune .. almost like hes in a deep pit and struggling to climb up relentlessly. there are people watching the elephant try to climb the dune. he keeps trying and does not succeed. I am also watching this. I tumble over and fall into the pit. I adore this elephant but I was afraid the elephant would lose balance and squash me under his huge body. and then i try to get out of the way and the elephant slides down super fast in my direction. But i steer clear of him. What could this mean?

-Angelica vargas 2016-08-05 17:58:48

Hello all I had a dream of a baby elephant that walked in through the backyard of the house.when it got in it started running around frantically trying to get outside again but it seemed like he couldn’t see the door. I tride guiding it out the door. And all it did was run into the wall and layed lifeless. Anyone know what this could mean ? Thanks in advance.

    -Anna - Tony's Assistant 2016-08-10 9:22:10

    Dear Angelica – The baby elephant in your dream may reflect that something new has entered your mind and you do not know yet how to deal with it in an effective way.
    Do you ever feel driven up the wall in your waking life?
    Are you aware of these feelings and can you express them to yourself?
    What does the baby elephant think and feel while it is frantically trying to get outside again; when it runs into the wall and lies lifeless;
    And what does your dream figure think and feel?
    Naming your emotions tends to diffuse their charge and lessen the burden they create. The psychologist Dan Siegel refers to this practice as “name it to tame it.”
    See also http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/self-observation/
    Anna 🙂

-Chris Boese 2016-07-09 3:03:41

I dreamt that I was playing catch with ganesh? I woke feeling a sense of peace. I don’t remember most dreams and I am a Catholic. Really strange. Any comments would be appreciated. Thank you

-Danielle 2016-06-02 4:12:26

️Idk .. This was odd .. I had a dream that I got accepted in to some play and the I had a meeting with the director and he told me to put my lines down somewhere safe where we wouldn’t forget them.his office was so messy and he found a book about elephants and then told me to put my lines under the elephant book .. Lots happened bla bla bla finally I wanted to come back to pick up my lines and the director was so dumb ! He doesn’t snark know what I was talking about.. So I had to say “sir ! It’s under the elephant book in your office !! Remember?? ” when we found it he finally remembered.. So w.e the hell that dream means .. Elephants are deffinetly a symbol

-Goldie May Hicks 2016-05-07 13:19:34

I dreamed we almost hit a baby elephant, look like it was covered in blood from waist down. My daughter was driving. Her kids was not wearing a seatbelt. Just around the corner was a circus wagon with a master standing there. My daughter breaks down and starts to cry, she’s tired, she wants out ,she’s screaming let me out of this. I’m never coming back. Why do you keep doing this to me. Just let us go. It was the first time I’ve seen her cry in years. In my heart and mind I know what the elephant means to me. I am asking for a second opinion. Why was the baby elephant bleeding?

-Teresa 2016-04-05 7:45:41


This is an amazing resource! Thanks for all the love, time and energy you put into it 🙂

I dreamt that I was assisting many others with preparation for a summer festival. I was in doors near a window with many others busily making preparations. Outside, it was a beautiful summer’s day. Suddenly, an elephant popped his head into the window. He looked right at me, pointed his trunk at me and made an elephant noise that sounded like the word “You!”. His face looked like it was smiling. I stood there, near the window unafraid, but puzzled, wondering if this was actually a message.

Thanks for considering this dream. I will keep searching for answers in your others pages, too.

-Annie 2016-04-04 17:25:40

I owned an elephant which I thought the world of. Unfortunately I was not allowed to keep it. I was shown a memento, it was a piece of clothe with a picture of an elephants tusk on. Around the edge of the clothe were straight lines and dashes – like a cutting line. There were many pieces of clothe all piled up, The tusk coloured in cream and surrounding colours of the clothe varied . I could choose one. I chose one with a deep red surround and the clothe was cut along the lines. This piece of clothe was taken away and tied around the elephants own tusk, I could see it wrapped around. I was told my elephant would never forget me and the dream ended

-Lakshmish 2016-02-18 3:06:57

hi sir,

yestarday i had one dream , in that dream one elephant are chasing me ,whats that meaning

-Swarag 2016-02-13 18:28:16

I had a dream in which a mother elephant ate its own baby! I’ve had this dream twice, alternatively in the night! It’s made my mood really off! Can you please tell me what does it signify? I’ve tried finding out but couldn’t really figure out.
Thank you

-Harikrishnan 2015-11-08 8:01:06

I saw a elephant with his master riding it was coming slowly near me and i ran fastly and look back it.. It was falling down and it was at its last breath of its life.. Iam really scared of dreaming like this.. Please mail me about this dream..

-Christina 2015-10-18 9:25:21

Dear Tony,

Greetings! I hope this finds you keeping well and healthy!

In the past, I had a lot of dreams related to roads and your guidance helped me a great deal in pointing me into a right direction to learning about myself through dreams. I’m very much thankful for your kindness, efforts and time in helping people like myself and others through your work. May all the goodness you have done in helping others reture to you in abundance.

With this message, I’m writing to also ask for your guidance (once again). Below is what my very recent dream is:

There was a cute little baby elephant sitting in a basin; the basin seemed to be placed somewhere probably in a small room like my bathroom (which is a nice small bathroom with shower). I looked after that baby elephant every day by pulling out the basin (as it seemed to be stored, with baby elephant in it, somewhere in the bathroom) and showering the baby elephant so that it was cleaned. During the shower, I used my hand to easily rub around armpits of the baby elephant too (without lifting up its arms). Although the baby elephant was a bit heavy when I tried to move its body a bit within the space of the basin so that it could be cleaned properly, the baby elephant sat in the basin throughout without any resistance or creating any difficulties. After finishing the shower each day, the baby elephant would be sitting in a pool of water at the bottom of the basin (as a result of showering) which I would then pull the basin back to its place. One day, I pulled out the basin, and the baby elephant seemed to have no weight at all! I was shock and wondered what happened. The baby elephant seemed to be lifeless. I began to get upset and told my best friend who came to help me grow vegetables as we had earlier arranged. After I told him, he acknowledged what he heard but did not seem to be worried about what happened at all. His face looked nice and fresh, although he was having a serious illness that could lead him to be in an operation theatre in the next ten or fifteen years or so. Then, I woke up. (PS. I love elephant. If I could have an elephant as a pet, I definitely would!!).

I hope there is a chance that you would be able to look into it and help shade some light as before.

Thank you for your kindness and your time in advance.

Best wishes,

-K 2015-09-19 12:54:17

I dreamt that a large gentle elephant walked into my house. It was raining in my dream an the elephant was wet. He just looked at me eye to eye very intensely. He seemed to be asking for help. He went back outside into the rain so I followed him. I watched him rescue a cat stuck in the rain. He picked the cat up with his trunk and returned the cat to its amazed owner. It was a very heart touching dream but I have no clue what it could possibly mean.

Copyright © 1999-2010 Tony Crisp | All rights reserved