Horses have taught me so much about humility, gratitude, acceptance and grace, I felt I’d like to share it with you. To celebrate life, love and our connectedness is what horses seem to do everyday.
‘Horse wisdom for the human heart’ is how I have come to conceptualize the lessons and wisdoms the horses seem to seek to share with us. I hope you will join me in allowing nature to teach us, being aware and self-reflective enough to take these lessons into our relationships with ourselves, each other and our environment. I hope to share a wisdom around a particular theme each month, and if there are any issues or themes you would like to see here, please let me know.
As humans we seem to view ourselves as more evolved – somehow higher up on the chain of command in the world. This lack of humility pains our world and causes untold misery to every other species confronted by this arrogance. In my life, cats, dogs, horses, sheep, geese, chickens and guinea fowl have brought life lessons worth learning and I guess sharing. They also seem to find a way of being in the world that is about ‘enough’ – no greed, no world domination, no taking for the sake of having. Never taking more than they need and also never demanding that any other species be destroyed by their want for power or domination. This attitude in our world has become exceptional and yet it is pervasive in the non-human animal kingdom. My friend and equine mentor, Chris, always says, “to err is human, to forgive is equine”. Certainly in the grand scheme of things, I am frequently humbled by the non-human animals in my life, who teach complex lessons with such direct honesty, simplicity and congruence. Horses, especially, only ever respond to what is truly there – no hidden agenda, no avoidance of reality, no lies and no preconceived judgments. Horses treat us as they treat each other in the herd, with consistent, patient honesty for the emotions they read.
As we enter a new year I am struck by the way my horses celebrate its coming. I can sometimes hear them say ‘there’s food, yay, there’s water, yay, there’s company, yay, happy days’. No regrets, no resolutions, no hangovers, no worries. The simple acceptance they show for what is, food, water, space, each other’s company and the simple abundance of living is indeed inspiring. I have taken a page from their book, and instead of new year’s resolutions settled for gratitude for what is. I give special thanks for the people (human and not) I have in my life who make each day more complete, and with whom I take the journey of every new and opportunistic day. We are what we think and feel, and horses give us opportunities in interacting with them to see our truth firsthand and receive feedback for change without judgment or rejection. There are those who argue that horses have been placed on this earth to show us what love looks like in its purest, most majestic form – absolute power, with no need to use it to harm anyone or anything. Horses only eat as much as they need, drink when they are thirsty, sleep when they feel tired, play when the mood takes them. What a lesson that serves to teach me about responsible, sustainable living! And what a lesson in living in the moment.