Subtleties mean everything to the horse. And the horse is Life. When we learn from them, we learn about life.
The human is quick to act. We are compulsive reactors. We error on the side of do this to get that. I feel the primary reason for this is a subtlety called “Projection”.
Rather than seeing our world from an internal objective space we see through subjective eyes. In simple terms we take our world personally.
The other morning I was watching some birds feeding on the ground. I watched how they interacted and realized if there was an aggressive bird, the other birds gave him space. They simply moved over or waited. It was plain to see that everyone got fed.
“It’s hard to be aggressive if the object of our aggression is not in range”
Because the birds didn’t take the aggression personally, there was no wasted energy. They were there with the purpose to feed—to refuel, if you will. It would be futile to spend energy to gain energy.
Humans waste enormous energy. I feel one reason this happens is because we internalize things from a perspective of defense.
We tend to see life aggressively. We act controlling, therefore we see others from the perspective of control. Little do we understand that, this perceptive lives inside us. And, it is actually feeding our energy to the very element we are resisting.
One primary premise of my book Perfect Practice is that “ When we shift our perspective, we can change our world.”
Aggression and Horses
Horses sense an aggressive approach. They can smell it like a wildfire. It is in their nature to be very keen when sensing aggression. As herd animals, they don’t think aggressively. Their means for survival is to detect aggression and escape from it. This subtlety is a very important element, to be deeply understood in the relationship between horse and human.
Actually, it’s important to state that it’s not just horses that have this heightened intuitive realization of our aggressive perspective. I feel the whole natural world can smell human aggression from a mile away.
I sense that our unawareness of this personal projection, in seeing the world from a subjective state, is at the root of our fall from Grace.
This is the perspective that separates us from all others. This perspective is what blocks us from the truth that the rest of the natural world is well aware of. Subjective perception blocks us from actualizing unconditioned Love—which is Life.
We are Our Own Worst Enemy
It’s truly remarkable to me that horses, as some of the most sensitive, intuitive creatures, allow us to repeatedly put them in an environment that incarcerates them. And in doing so initiates their deepest fear responses.
Many people see horses as accepting and trusting them. But I propose some difficult questions to ponder. Is it trust or surrender? Is it willingness or subjugation? This we need to find out for ourselves in each and every relationship we have.
Horses are our master teachers because they offer the forgiveness of Saints. Many horses welcome the opportunity to present us with the very curriculum that can save our world! At the very least it can save us from ourselves!
The simple subtlety of recognizing subjective verses objective perception is what I consider to be the holy grail of horsemanship. And within this realization our natural essence can break through millions of years of conditioning.
This is not light work. But it is the most simple and effective shift one can make. We don’t need 10 more helpful hints to give us what we desire. Quite the opposite. One simple shift to ultimate freedom.
How can this be? Could it be as simple as this? Don’t take my word for it. Try it and see. How does life feel if you don’t take anything personally? One moment of this recognition is Perfect Practice.