No one gets what a horse can do for your soul more than I do. Granted, I'm sure there are plenty of folks who understand it as well as I but the passion I feel for horses couldn't be further rooted in the healing powers of the horse/human relationship. I've understood that connection all along so horses and healing have always been a huge part of my dream. What I didn't get was that not all people saw it the same way and how that discrepancy could affect everything.
Pat Parelli said in one of his demonstrations this weekend, we tend to believe that everyone around us is like minded. His connotation of the problems this phenomenon might cause made sense to me. I know that thinking has been a problem for me. While I hadn't really given it much thought until recently, it does turn out to be one of the bigger lessons I have learned along my life with Arabian horses.
The issues that resulted because of those blinders I had applied myself have not always been good for me or my horses. Some of the biggest mistakes I have made were in decisions I made based on this fallacy. Not seeing the error of my thing caused a weakness to be exploited and here I always thought it was about me and the horses, but it turns out to be about me, my horses and those around me regardless of their motivation. I believed as long as I stayed on target the rest would fall into place and it would all be good. It has only been in the past few years that I have begun to see the error of my thinking and how it has affected my dream.
I'm pretty sure this isn't what you expected to hear as the beginning of my narrative on the Horse and Soul Parelli USA Tour 2012 but it turned out to be the basis of the entire experience for me. Since early in my journey I have sought a better way to treat horses than what I learned early on through both reading and experience. Like anything else new, I discovered things slowly. It was another process, like all things connected with horses, so maybe what I "learned" at this weekend's event was what fit right in with my current situation. I believe that's probably what happened with all those other thousands of horse people there wanting to learn better ways to exist with the horses they love.
I think we humans tend to learn what we are ready to hear. It doesn't matter if we are exposed to information beyond our scope. If we don't get it, we can't learn it. Our vision is limited by our knowlege and experience at the time. All excess information falls to the wayside while we grasp what we are capable of.
That's probably a good thing for a clinic like this because it means that all levels of horsemanship can be addressed by one clinician with pertinent information and each person will learn something that works for him/her. As fellow companions in this journey, we must each be content to know the other is on his/her own journey and will get "there" when he/she is "ready" just like the horse each wants to enjoy.
This whole process thing is really at the route of the journey each of us takes through our lives. Whether it is based on a true therapeutic need like mine or some unknown connection that draws you, the important part is the process itself. How we are affected, what drives us to makes changes, it's all good if it gets us where we're going.
For me that's to that place of a better relationship between me and my horses. Despite everything that has happened I still believe if I work with my horses to build relationships based on trust, I will build confidence in them which will in turn build confidence in the community for the Arabian horse as an individual and eventually it will trickled down for me as a breeder.
Working with a breed as misunderstood as mine, that goal is imperative. How else can one overcome all the bad PR flying around the equine community as it is? For me, proving Arabian horses are the kind, gentle creatures I know them as is rooted in the experience of the horses with the humans around them.
The kindest, sweetest horse can be turned into a frightened, desperate creature living in defense mode at the mere scent of a human. I know that. I have seen it. I have had it happen to horses I have raised. I "get" that for horses to continue in relationships with humans the thinking that causes such reactions by horses must be changed too. The only way to protect the horse is to change the mindset of those doing the damage. The things I saw this weekend suggest the Parellis and I are like minded in that belief.
To be continued..........
Getting to the Horse and Soul Parellli USA Tour 2012