Self Realization Through The Training of Horses at Liberty
How well I remember the first time I saw a YouTube video of Carolyn Resnick with a horse named Panadero. I was totally mesmerized by their interactions and the intense connection that they shared. I immediately said, “This is what I want to do!” I had a thirst for a deeper connection with my horses. Carolyn’s video provided living proof that I could quench that thirst. Panadero was so visibly drawn to Carolyn that it seemed almost magical. I bought the DVD and also began to study with Carolyn. As I started this wonderful journey, I had no idea where it might lead me. At the time, I had yet to learn that Carolyn’s method provides a vehicle for self-realization as well.
Currently, I teach Carolyn’s method in Canada, Europe, Costa Rica, and throughout the United States. My love for horses has grown beyond my wildest dreams and I have profoundly changed the way that I train. Carolyn’s method honors the horse by ensuring that he always has a choice and resistance is not addressed. Gradually, I began to eliminate resistance from my human relationships as well.
Participants in my clinics are frequently willing to share stories of their personal experiences. An accomplished horsewoman (Julie), who attended one of my clinics, proved to be no exception. During the first day of the clinic, Julie simply sat and looked rather stone-faced. I couldn’t tell if she liked the clinic or not. The second day was much the same. On the third day, I led a group meditation in which I asked the participants to visualize that they were looking into a mirror. I asked each woman to declare to her reflection that she loved herself exactly as she is. After the meditation, I asked each participant to share what the experience was like for them. Julie responded that she had been totally unable to look into the mirror. Later that evening, the clinic hostess led us all in a Shamanic Journey. It was my first, so I was very excited! As each person discussed their experiences, Julie shared that when she was quite young she had been abandoned by her mother. No wonder she had built up such a defensive shield!
As you may know, on the third day of my clinics, I spend some private time with each participant. As Julie approached for her turn, I hugged her and said I was glad she was attending the clinic. She pulled back from me and asked, “Why?” Again, I questioned my perceptions and wondered if Julie was getting what she needed from the clinic. Julie then surprised me by saying that she had signed up to bring one of her horses for a private lesson with me the next day. She had two horses and was unsure of which one to bring. One horse was thoroughly trained at liberty. The other horse (Wind Dancer) had been a PMU foal. The mothers of PMU foals are bred repeatedly to produce pregnant mare’s urine used by drug companies to manufacture female replacement hormones. The foals are considered to be an unwanted by-product of the process. As a result, thousands of these foals are orphaned each year.
Julie said that when she had first seen Wind Dancer she thought he was the most beautiful horse she had ever seen. However after she adopted Wind Dancer, Julie realized that for some indescribable reason she did not enjoy working with him and was unsure if she even liked him. Several top trainers had worked with Wind Dancer but Julie still did not trust him and experienced an uneasy feeling in his presence. I told Julie to bring both horses so that we could decide which one to work with the next day. I knew the answer to our question would present itself given the opportunity.
The next day, we put both horses in the arena. As we watched Wind Dancer, Julie said that she did not want to hear small talk and platitudes about her horse. She said that she wanted to hear the truth. At that point I took off my sunglasses so that I could look her straight in the eye and said, “Julie, I am going to tell you the truth and I am going to start right now. Any time that you can’t look at yourself in a mirror, your mirror will find you. Wind Dancer is your mirror. When you work with him, it pulls at your heartstrings. Wind Dancer knows how you feel because he was abandoned too.” As Julie gasped at the reality of my words, I walked into the arena to work with Wind Dancer. Within 20 minutes, he was companion walking (by-passing food) to be with me and in cooperation with every request I made of him. After a wonderful session with Wind Dancer, I told Julie that her horse was most certainly willing to make a connection. Julie realized that she had indeed found her mirror and instantly her protective shield began to melt away.
The people who attend my clinics are wonderful individuals who never cease to amaze me. As the journey of self-realization begins, some participants have life-changing experiences and epiphanies. We all inherently recognize the strength, energy, and power of connection. Is your horse YOUR mirror? If so, what is he reflecting back to you?
This year I will be giving clinics in Costa Rica, Canada, New York, North Carolina, England, & Denmark. Join me and learn to connect with your horse at liberty and allow your horse to take you on the amazing journey of self-realization.
Have a great rest of the week and remember...