Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Horse as Equal

I never feel equal with people, really never. Less than, more than, better than, worse than - all of that is around people. We hardly recognize that we start from the same place. That recognition has long since been displaced by countless things in life that distance us from ourselves.

It's not like that around horses, though. I feel my horse and I are equal in the moment, whatever that moment may be, whichever horse it may be. I think the species difference is what creates that sense for me. For their powers, the mares are advantaged over me; for mine, I am advantaged over them. Face to face, it all levels out on a being-to-being plane. We are present, and, because we cannot communicate in the same language, we are equalized by our limitations and left able to be only what we are. It's like we're in the same boat for our differences. From there, we interact. I like the bluntness of it, the inescapable immediacy of it. I just don't think you can lie to a horse without lying to yourself. Sometimes it seems I get a better measure of myself from horses than I ever do from humans, even those I love most in the world.


juliette said...

Great thoughts.

I don't feel equal with my horse(s). They seem more in tune to me with the real world than I do. I strive to be in touch like they are. I don't really admire to many humans like I do my horses.

juliette said...

oops...I meant "too" many humans!

Calm, Forward, Straight said...

The horses are more equal I think :) Worthy of admiriation.

I strive to be as fair, forgiving, accepting of things as they are... in the moment.

smazourek said...

"Sometimes it seems I get a better measure of myself from horses than I ever do from humans, even those I love most in the world."

THIS, this exactly. It's often very hard for me when my horses give me feedback that I'm not yet the person I want to be, but I know that they're the only way I'm ever going to get there. Their honesty is very humbling, but they don't judge and they always forgive.

twohorses said...

I totally agree with Smazourek. I often feel that my horses know me better or on a deeper level than anyone else. With them, there is no need to play any of the roles that society places upon us. It is enough to just be.

Anna said...

Well said. I too value the equine honesty above all else. It is a glare of light to stand in and live up to. From humans I have learned lower skills by far.

Rising Rainbow said...

I'd have to think a bit to spell out my relationship with horses in terms like you've used here. I certainly admire the honesty of the horse but that's not what draws me to them but I'm sure it helps to keep me engaged with them.

It's hard to think in the terms of equality with such two very different creatures. I guess I see equality more as something I am striving for than something I have. The success of it wrapped up in the understanding between us.

At this point I think I "get" them much better than they "get" me. When that balances out I think equality will be one of the benefits.

Of course that understanding is different with each horse and each relationship. Probably Dandy and I get each other pretty well, as do Legs and I. Others I am still working at opening that door.

I so admire those horsemen that can get that understanding in a matter of a few short hours instead of the months or years it takes me.

June said...

I know exactly what you mean.

The only people I feel equal with are my kids.

allhorsestuff said...

wow, deep thoughts here.
I will never be equal with my mare...
We bring each other opposite perspectives that teach us both to grow. She teaches me about me so very much, and about life from a simple frame of mind.
Like yesterday..I am pondering it still. I brought her home from her other barn we go to...she feels at ease there and I know she does at the current one too...but as we walked into the stable, she saw a new horse..and flipped out! I knew he was to come, but never imagined her response to him...they are not close, and probably never will be s,oser than 3 fences away. But he stared at her and that unerves her -quickly. Now if he looked up and away, she';d be all overit, "lets go see that confident horse".

As it stood, I could barely groom her...at that moment I had to be stronger to acknowledge her fears and actually not request "she suck it up" and pay attention to me...she just could not. Her world was shaken..she is ultra senitive. I'll give it 24 to 48 hours and then she'll calm. That's about the time it does take me- for sudden changes(additions to or losses of) these days to assimylate them and to accept my place in them.

The people I admire and strive to be like are the longsuffering ones...the ones that give out mercy and loving. I have some in my life and they teach me to not be so judgmental and critical...they see the better parts of things and people.

Sorry for the long drawn out...your subjects and post bring out the thoughts/talk in me!