What Do 3 Elephants Symbolize? Discover Their Meaning and Significance

When you think of elephants, you might picture their massive size, wrinkled skin, and impressive tusks. But did you know that these majestic creatures also hold deep symbolic meaning? In fact, in many cultures, three elephants together represent wisdom, good luck, and longevity. This powerful symbolism has been passed down through generations, and holds a special place in the hearts of many.

The three elephants are often depicted with their trunks raised, as if trumpeting their message to the world. This gesture represents strength, power, and the ability to overcome obstacles. And it’s no wonder when you consider the immense strength and resilience of these incredible animals. From carrying heavy loads to navigating difficult terrains, elephants are truly a force to be reckoned with. It’s no surprise that they have come to embody qualities that we all strive for in our own lives.

As we explore the significance of the three elephants, we’ll delve into the various interpretations of this symbol across cultures and contexts. Whether you’re looking for a little extra luck in your life or simply appreciate the beauty and wisdom of these gentle giants, the three elephants offer a powerful message that we can all learn from. So buckle up, get ready to learn, and join me on a journey through the world of elephant symbolism!

Symbolism of Elephants in Different Cultures

Elephants have been revered and celebrated in various cultures across the globe. These magnificent creatures have inspired countless myths, stories, and legends that showcase their strength, wisdom, and spiritual significance. From Africa to Asia, elephants have played a pivotal role in shaping the cultural identities of many societies.

Symbolism of Elephants in Different Cultures

  • In African cultures, elephants are considered as symbols of strength, power, and royalty. They are often depicted in tribal art, folklore, and traditional dances. Moreover, elephants are also associated with fertility, long life, and good luck.
  • In Hindu mythology, elephants are revered as holy animals, and Lord Ganesha, the Elephant-headed God, is believed to bring wisdom and prosperity. Elephants are also used in various religious rituals and processions, and their images adorn many temples and shrines.
  • In Chinese culture, elephants symbolize good luck, longevity, and prosperity. The elephant is one of the twelve symbols of the Chinese zodiac, and it is believed that those born in the year of the elephant are blessed with happiness and success. Elephants are also considered auspicious animals in Feng Shui, and their figurines are often used to bring good fortune and harmony to homes and businesses.

Symbolism of Elephants in Different Cultures

In Thai culture, white elephants are considered as symbols of royal power and prestige. In the past, they could only be owned by the king, and their appearance was seen as a sign of good omen. These majestic beasts are still highly respected in Thailand, and they are celebrated during the annual Elephant Festival, which showcases their beauty, intelligence, and strength.

In African folktales, elephants are often portrayed as wise and benevolent creatures that help humans overcome adversity. Their kindness, empathy, and intelligence are praised and revered, and they are seen as great teachers and protectors of the natural world.

Symbolism of Elephants in Different Cultures


AfricanStrength, power, royalty, fertility, long life, and good luck
HinduWisdom, prosperity, and good fortune
ChineseGood luck, longevity, prosperity, and harmony

Elephants have also been used as symbols of memory, intelligence, compassion, and teamwork. Their social nature and intricate communication skills have fascinated humans for centuries, and their survival is crucial for the maintenance of ecological balance and biodiversity. Whether celebrated as sacred beings, revered as powerful icons, or loved as gentle giants, elephants continue to inspire and captivate us with their grace, beauty, and magnificence.

Three Elephants as a Motif in Buddhist Art and Philosophy

In Buddhist art and philosophy, the number three holds significant importance. It represents a harmonious balance between the three core principles of Buddhism: Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha. Moreover, the three elephants symbolize various aspects of Buddhist teachings and bring a powerful message of mindfulness.

  • Strength: The first elephant stands for strength, power, and endurance. It represents the strength of the mind, body, and spirit and reminds us to stay committed to our spiritual journey.
  • Wisdom: The second elephant symbolizes wisdom, knowledge, and understanding. It represents the wisdom of the Buddha and encourages us to seek knowledge and experience to enrich our lives and expand our spiritual awareness.
  • Protection: The third elephant represents protection, compassion, and love. It reminds us to be kind, compassionate, and take care of ourselves and others.

Three elephants also represent a balanced emotional state of mind. They are seen as a reminder to cultivate a balance between love, compassion, and wisdom.

In Buddhist art, the three elephants can be found in various forms, including statues, paintings, and other artwork. One of the most famous examples is the Sanchi Stupa, which is an ancient Buddhist monument in India. The stupa features many elephants, including a carving of three elephants standing side by side, trunk-to-tail, symbolizing unity and harmony.

Elephant PositionMeaning
The first elephantStrength, power, and endurance.
The second elephantWisdom, knowledge, and understanding.
The third elephantProtection, compassion, and love.

The three elephants’ symbolism in Buddhist art and philosophy is a powerful reminder to cultivate balance and harmony in our lives. By embracing their teachings, we can achieve a higher level of understanding and gain a deeper appreciation for the beauty and complexity of the world around us.

The Meaning of Three Elephants in Hindu Mythology

In Hindu mythology, elephants hold a significant role and are considered sacred animals. As per Hindu scriptures, there are several meanings associated with the number three and elephants. Three elephants together represent many virtues such as strength, wisdom, and good fortune.

  • Trinity: In Hinduism, the number three represents the divine trinity – Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahesh. Elephants are regarded as a symbol of Lord Ganesha, who is known to be associated with knowledge, wealth, and success. Thus, three elephants together are a symbolic representation of the divine trinity and are believed to bring good luck and prosperity to the worshipper.
  • Power: Elephants are one of the strongest and most powerful animals on the planet. They possess immense strength and are capable of carrying huge weights. In Hindu mythology, elephants symbolize strength, stability, and power. Three elephants together signify immense power and represent the ability to overcome obstacles and challenges with ease.
  • Wisdom: In Hindu mythology, elephants are regarded as symbols of wisdom and intelligence. Lord Ganesha, who is associated with the elephant, is also considered to be a deity of wisdom and knowledge. Therefore, three elephants together symbolize immense wisdom and intelligence and are believed to bless the worshipper with the same.

Additionally, the presence of three elephants together is considered auspicious and is believed to bring good luck and fortune to the worshipper.

The Symbolism of Elephants in Hindu Mythology

Elephants hold significant symbolism in Hindu mythology. Considered as sacred animals, they are associated with many virtues, such as strength, wisdom, patience, and prosperity. Elephants have found their place in Hindu mythology, and many gods and goddesses have been associated with them. Here are some significant symbolisms of elephants in Hindu mythology:

  • Ganesha: Lord Ganesha, also known as the elephant-headed deity, is one of the most worshipped gods in Hinduism. He is considered to be the lord of success, wisdom, and good fortune. He is also believed to be the remover of obstacles and is worshipped before any new beginnings.
  • Indra: In Hindu mythology, Indra is regarded as the king of gods and the ruler of the heavens. He is also associated with elephants and is believed to ride on a white elephant called Airavata.
  • Symbol of Wealth and Prosperity: Elephants are also associated with wealth and prosperity in Hindu mythology. Their trunk is believed to be a symbol of wealth and abundance, and it is considered auspicious to have an elephant’s statue or painting in the house to attract wealth and prosperity.

The Elephant Festival

Elephant Festival, also known as the Jaipur Elephant Festival, is celebrated in Jaipur, Rajasthan, India every year on the day of Holi. The festival is a tribute to the elephant’s importance in Hindu culture and is considered a way to honor the sacred animal.

Highlights of the Elephant FestivalDescription
Elephant ParadeThe festival begins with a grand parade of decorated elephants. The elephants are adorned with colorful clothes and jewelry.
Elephant PoloElephant polo, a game similar to horse polo but played on the elephant’s back, is organized during the festival.
Tug of WarElephants participate in a tug of war with the tourists, which is a fun event.
Elephant Beauty PageantThe festival ends with an elephant beauty pageant, where the elephants showcase their beauty, skills, and unique features.

The Elephant Festival is a unique experience and is a way to celebrate the beauty and majesty of the elephants. It is also a way to promote tourism and educate people about the significance of elephants in Indian culture and heritage.

The Significance of Three Elephants in African Folklore

The African continent is rich in traditions and myths that have been passed down through generations. One of the most prominent symbols in African folklore is the elephant. In this article, we will delve into the significance of three elephants in African cultures.

Three Elephants in African Folklore

  • Unity and Family: Elephants are known to be social animals that live in herds or families led by a matriarch. The number three is often used to represent the three stages of family life: birth, life, and death. Three elephants are also believed to symbolize the family bond and unity, emphasizing the importance of maintaining harmonious relationships among family members.
  • Power and Strength: African folklore equates the elephant’s size and strength with power, making it a symbol of authority and leadership. Three elephants are often used to represent a powerful force that can conquer any challenge at hand. It also reflects the idea that one should seek the strength and wisdom of elders in times of crisis.
  • Balance and Harmony: According to African folklore, everything in nature should exist in balance and harmony. Three elephants symbolize the need for harmony between the physical, spiritual, and mental aspects of life. It reflects the idea that everything in life should be treated with balance and respect, which is vital for maintaining peace and stability in the world.

The Wisdom of Three Elephants

African folklore associates elephants with wisdom and knowledge. The matriarch of an elephant herd is respected for her intelligence, and the elders are honored for their experience. Therefore, three elephants portray the wisdom that comes with age and experience.

Furthermore, three elephants may also represent the three core principles of wisdom: learning, understanding, and applying knowledge. It encourages individuals to seek knowledge and apply it to their lives, making them better people in the process.

The Three Elephant Table

African artisans often create sculptures, carvings, and other artwork featuring three elephants. The three elephants’ table is a unique piece of furniture that symbolizes balance, harmony, and unity. This table typically consists of three elephant figures holding a table with a glass top. Each elephant represents one of the three core principles of wisdom, which supports the table’s foundation.

ElephantCore Principle
Baby ElephantLearning
Mother ElephantUnderstanding
Elder ElephantApplying Knowledge

The three elephant table is a beautiful piece of craftsmanship that serves as a reminder of the importance of balance and wisdom in our lives, family, and community.

In conclusion, three elephants hold significant importance in African folklore. They represent unity, power, balance, harmony, and wisdom. The three core principles of wisdom, learning, understanding, and applying knowledge are reflected in the portrayal of three elephants in African folklore and art.

Three elephants as a symbol of strength and unity

The number three is often used in symbolism to represent completeness, harmony, and balance. Three elephants together, therefore, symbolize strength and unity. The power of three elephants working together is formidable – not only are they physically strong but their bond and unity make them even more powerful.

  • Strength
  • Elephants are one of the largest land mammals, with males weighing up to 6,000 kg and females weighing up to 4,000 kg. Their sheer size and impressive physical strength make them an ideal symbol of power and might. As the saying goes, “strong like an elephant.”

  • Unity
  • Elephants are known for their strong family bonds and their ability to work together to achieve a common goal. They are social animals who live in herds led by a matriarch. Each member of the herd has a role to play and contributes to the well-being of the group. Elephants are also known to be empathetic creatures, showing concern for their herd mates when they are sick or injured.

  • Symbolism
  • Three elephants have appeared in many cultures and have been used as a symbol of strength and unity. In Hindu mythology, the three elephants holding up the world represent stability and support. In Buddhism, the Buddha is said to have been visited three times by a white elephant, which symbolizes wisdom, power, and purity. In Feng Shui, three elephants are often displayed in the home to bring good luck and prosperity.

Overall, three elephants as a symbol of strength and unity represent the powerful combination of physical strength and emotional bonding. They remind us that we are stronger together than we are alone, and that working towards a common goal can lead to great achievements.

So next time you come across an image or statue of three majestic elephants, take a moment to appreciate their symbolism and the message they convey.

The Representation of Three Elephants in Tarot Cards and Divination

In tarot cards and divination, the number three represents creativity, achievement, and growth. It is a powerful number that can bring about positive changes and success. The symbolism of three elephants is no exception – it holds significant meaning that can affect one’s personal development.

In tarot cards, the three of pentacles features three elephants carrying the weight of a building on their backs. This card signifies teamwork, collaboration, and the achievement of a common goal. It suggests that by working with others, one can achieve much more than by working alone. Additionally, the three pentacles represent planning, executing, and completing a project successfully. Therefore, if you pull this card, it is a sign to work together with others and expect excellent results.

  • The number three also represents longevity, power, and wisdom, making it a positive omen for your finances, personal relationships, and career.
  • The three elephants also represent mind, body, and spirit, symbolizing balance and harmony within oneself.
  • In Hindu culture, the three elephants are seen as sacred creatures that bring good fortune and prosperity wherever they go.

In divination, three elephants signify the need to seek wisdom and guidance from higher sources. It might be a sign that you need to take a step back and reflect on your life, find balance, and seek inner peace. The three elephants remind you to be patient, work hard, and never give up on your goals, even when faced with challenges.

The table below summarizes the key symbolism of three elephants:

Teamwork and collaborationAchieving a common goal through cooperation
Planning, execution, completionSuccess in projects and endeavors
Longevity, power, and wisdomPositive omen for finances, relationships, and career
Mind, body, and spiritBalance and harmony within oneself
Higher guidanceSeeking wisdom and enlightenment
Good fortune and prosperityBringing positive energy and success wherever they go

In conclusion, the representation of three elephants in tarot cards and divination holds significant meaning that can bring about positive changes in one’s life. It symbolizes teamwork, success, balance, and guidance, reminding us to work together, stay focused, and seek wisdom from higher sources to achieve our goals and find inner peace.

The use of three elephants in logo design and branding

When it comes to logo design and branding, the use of three elephants is a popular choice amongst companies. The number three is a powerful symbol, and it gives a sense of completeness and harmony. In numerology, three is seen as a magical number as it represents the past, present, and future. Here, we will take a closer look at what three elephants symbolize, particularly in logo design and branding.

The meaning behind three elephants in logo design and branding

  • Strength: Elephants are known for their strength, and three of them together signify ultimate strength and power that can overcome any obstacle.
  • Stability: Elephants are also a symbol of stability, and three elephants in a logo or branding signify a stable and reliable foundation that any business strives for.
  • Family: Elephants are known for their strong family bonds, and three elephants can signify a family unit. This makes them an ideal choice for family-oriented businesses or businesses that prioritize family values.

Examples of three elephants in logo design and branding

Many companies have used three elephants in their logo design or branding to represent the above meanings. Here are some examples:

Elephant CooperationElephant Cooperation LogoStrength and unity
Elephant GinElephant Gin LogoFamily, harmony, and balance
Elephant ParadeElephant Parade LogoCommunity and conservation

As we can see from the examples above, the use of three elephants in logo design and branding is versatile, and it can be tailored to suit the values and goals of a business.

Three elephants as a decorative element in interior design:

Elephants have long been revered in many cultures around the world. From their gentle nature to their stunning beauty, elephants have become a popular symbol in interior design. Here, we’ll take a closer look at what 3 elephants symbolize in interior decor and how you can incorporate them into your home:

The number 3 in interior design:

  • The number 3 is often considered a powerful symbol in many cultures, representing harmony, balance and stability.
  • In interior design, the rule of three is a well-known concept that refers to grouping things in threes to create an aesthetically pleasing composition.
  • When it comes to using three elephants in interior decor, it’s thought to bring good luck, strength, and protection to the home.

Ways to incorporate three elephants into your home:

Now that we know the symbolism behind three elephants, let’s take a look at a few ways to incorporate them into your home:

  • Statues: Elephant statues are a popular way to add a touch of elegance and serenity to your home. You can place them on bookshelves, tables, or even in gardens.
  • Wall art: An elephant canvas or print can make a bold statement in any room. Use it as a centerpiece in your living area or bedroom to create a focal point.
  • Rugs: An elephant patterned rug can add a unique touch to any room. It can give your room a cozy, laid-back vibe and make it look more inviting.

The significance of elephant trunks:

Not only is the number 3 significant, but within the three elephants, the trunk’s position plays a pivotal role in its symbolism.

The 3 elephants typically stand in a row, with the trunk of the middle elephant raised above the other two. This represents the elder elephant who takes care of the younger ones, symbolizing the importance of family and unity.

Elephant Trunk PositionSymbolism
Trunk RaisedGood luck, victory, and protection.
Trunk DownProperty protection, good fortune, and fertility.
Trunk CurledLongevity, wisdom, and luck.

Remember, incorporating three elephants into your home is more than just a trendy decor statement. The symbolism behind it carries meaning and significance. By understanding this meaning, you’ll be able to choose the right decor item that complements your home’s style and brings a touch of positive energy to your living space.

Folk beliefs and superstitions surrounding three elephants

Elephants have been revered in many cultures for centuries and they symbolize many things. One of the most widespread beliefs surrounding elephants is that three elephants symbolize good luck and prosperity. This belief is particularly popular in Asian cultures where elephants are a common sight. Here, we explore the significance of three elephants and their importance in folk beliefs and superstitions.

The Number 9

In many Asian cultures, the number nine is considered to be a mystic number that has special significance. This is because, in Chinese, the word for “nine” sounds like the word for “long-lasting” or “eternal.” Therefore, the number nine is associated with harmony, longevity, and good fortune.

In Chinese mythology, the dragon, which is one of the most revered creatures, has nine forms. It is said that the dragon rises from the water every nine years and brings good luck and abundance to the land. Similarly, Buddhist legends say that the Buddha was born with nine dragons encircling his head in a halo of fire, signifying his spiritual authority over the elements.

The number nine also plays an important role in feng shui, the ancient Chinese practice of creating a harmonious environment that is believed to attract positive energy. Nine is considered the most auspicious number in feng shui, and it is often used to enhance the energy of different parts of a room or a building. For example, placing nine coins in the wealth corner of a room is believed to attract abundance and prosperity.

Symbolism of Three Elephants

  • Strength, power and stability: Elephants are known for their strength and power. Three elephants together symbolize stability and a solid foundation, making them a popular motif in many cultures.
  • Good luck and prosperity: As mentioned earlier, three elephants are associated with good luck and prosperity. In feng shui, it is believed that placing three elephants at the entrance of a home or a business can bring good luck and fortune to the occupants.
  • Family and unity: Elephants are known for their strong social bonds and family ties. Three elephants together symbolize family unity and cooperation.

Meaning of Elephant Trunks

The position of an elephant’s trunk is also believed to carry different meanings. In general, an upward-facing trunk is considered to signify good luck and prosperity, while a downward-facing trunk is said to represent humility and the grounding of positive energy. Three elephants together with their trunks raised up in unison symbolize a continuous flow of good luck and fortune.

Number of ElephantsMeaning
One ElephantStrength, power, and stability
Two ElephantsLove, partnership, and harmony
Three ElephantsGood luck, prosperity, family, and unity
Four ElephantsStability, balance, and strength
Five ElephantsBalance, harmony, and abundance

The symbolism of elephants varies across different cultures and beliefs. However, there is no denying that these magnificent creatures are considered to be symbols of strength, power, and stability, making them a popular motif in art, architecture, and design.

The role of three elephants in children’s literature and media

The number three is often used in storytelling as it creates a more complete and satisfying narrative. When it comes to children’s literature and media, three elephants have become a popular theme for authors and creators. Here we explore the role of three elephants in children’s literature and media.

The significance of three elephants

  • The number three has a strong association with balance and stability, making it a popular choice for children’s stories and media.
  • The use of three elephants can represent different things, from friendship to family bonding and overcoming challenges together.
  • Three elephants also add a fun and visually appealing element to children’s media, making it more engaging and entertaining

Examples of three elephants in children’s literature and media

Here are some popular examples of books and shows that use three elephants in their storytelling:

  • Elephant and Piggie by Mo Willems features two best friends, a pig and an elephant who overcome everyday challenges together. In some of their stories, they are joined by a third elephant who adds a new dynamic to their friendship.
  • Three Elephants by Ken Heyman is a picture book that uses three elephants to teach young children about numbers and counting in a fun and memorable way.

The importance of three elephants in children’s media

Three elephants have become a popular theme in children’s literature and media because of its powerful storytelling implications and visual appeal. Not only do elephants represent strength, wisdom and stability, but their association with a number that signifies balance makes them a compelling choice for children’s stories. Adding a third elephant to a narrative can introduce a new element to an established storyline, increasing the complexity and intrigue for young readers and viewers.


Key Takeaways:
The use of three elephants is a popular theme in children’s literature and media as it signifies balance and stability.
Three elephants can represent different things, from friendship to family bonding and overcoming challenges together.
Examples of books and shows that use three elephants include Elephant and Piggie by Mo Willems and Three Elephants by Ken Heyman.

The role of three elephants in children’s literature and media is significant, both in terms of storytelling and visual appeal. As the number three continues to be a popular choice for writers and creators, we can expect to see more three elephant stories in children’s media in the future.

FAQs: What Do 3 Elephants Symbolize?

Elephants are revered creatures in many cultures around the world, and often symbolize important virtues and values. Here are some frequently asked questions about what three elephants together symbolize:

1. What does the number three signify?

In many societies, the number three represents balance and harmony. The number three is also seen as a symbol of past, present, and future.

2. What do elephants represent in Hinduism?

Elephants are considered sacred animals in Hinduism and are associated with the god Ganesha, who is the remover of obstacles. Ganesha is often depicted with an elephant head.

3. What do elephants represent in Thai culture?

Elephants are a national symbol of Thailand and are seen as symbols of good fortune, power, and strength. In Thai culture, white elephants are considered especially auspicious.

4. What do three elephants symbolize in Feng Shui?

In feng shui, three elephants often represent prosperity, good luck, and harmony. They are believed to bring good fortune to the home or workplace when placed in certain areas.

5. What does a family of three elephants symbolize?

A family of three elephants can represent family unity and strong familial bonds. They can also symbolize wisdom, memory, and loyalty.

6. What do three elephants tattoo signify?

A tattoo of three elephants often signifies family, loyalty, and good fortune. It can also be a reminder of one’s own strength and power.

7. What do three elephants in a dream mean?

Dreaming of three elephants can represent the dreamer’s own power, strength, and emotional balance. It can also be a sign of good luck and prosperity to come.

Closing Thoughts: Thanks for Reading!

Thank you for reading about what three elephants symbolize. Elephants have played important roles in cultures around the world for centuries, and continue to capture our imagination and inspire us today. If you want to learn more about animal symbolism, check out our other articles on the topic. We hope to see you again soon!