Mary Corning Natural progression

Natural Progression — Being aware of the line in the sand

The third installment in a series for the deep seeker.
You can read the first installment “Conscious Awareness” here, and the second installment, “Being Early” here.

Natural Progression — Being Aware of the Line in the Sand

Working from a success to a success is a cornerstone of my work with both people and horses.
In order to work from a success it is vital that we know the source of our actions.
In my personal experience, as well as my experience with others, I can see that left unattended, many of our actions are often RE-actions. They are repetitive.
We do what we learned, typically from outside sources. And then, subsequently we do what we’ve always done.
This habitual tendency is how our life is driven by conditioning. My teacher would say of horses “They live what they learn and they learn it as they live it.“
What we practice is what we become. It is very important to me to be extremely conscious about what it is that I am practicing.
When our actions come from conditioning (doing what we’ve always done) our relationships are unconsciously not our own. This definitely includes our relationships with horses.
The last few times I was saddling my horse I noticed that she was feeling flinchy. One of the riddles of horsemanship is being able to determine the cause of behavior.
This is one reason horses give us such a rich opportunity to live a deeper life. Because they obviously don’t use words to tell us what is happening. Working with horses enhances our gift of observation.
I continued to do what I had been doing until it incrementally became a problem. Yesterday my horse Grace got very troubled as she moved off from saddling.
This was finally my indicator to go back and do things differently.
I unsaddled her and saddled her again so as to observe if there was a difference. The second saddling was much improved but still not neutral.
What was actually fabulous in doing this was the opportunity to see something I’ve never seen! Grace surprised me.
I decided to move the saddle rack from the corner to the middle of the panel. When I took the saddle off and put it on the rack, Grace had a chance to go over and investigate it. She rubbed her lips all over it. It truly was as if she was seeing it for the first time.
I was really scratching my head. Because she had worn this saddle for nearly 2 years. I realized through this observation that I store the saddle behind me. Grace doesn’t have access to it. The change I made to location offered something I had never seen before.
After observing her do this I saddled her for a third time. And with this she visibly let down. Licking her lips, stretching her neck and blowing deep breaths out.
Now I can’t say exactly what is going on. But I can say that I witnessed a great change. I witnessed a change from resistance to peace. And this is what makes this such a great example of the line in the sand.
Rather than riding that day, I left her with that success. Where you leave it is often where you find it.
This story is not just for horse people. It is for everyone to understand that in every day of our lives are signals that tell us if we have crossed the line in the sand.
Remember, the line in the sand is where life goes from non-resistance to resistance.
In my previous installment, I talked about being early. I feel this story about Grace is a good example that I could’ve been earlier. I could have done things differently the first time I saw her flinch. But at that point, I wrote it off to Spring fever or female hormones, etc. That said, I did have a chiropractor out to be sure it wasn’t pain related. So I suppose I was taking incremental steps.
The important part is that we don’t do what we’ve always done—that we are willing to change things up.
Being early is recognizing the line in the sand. Being conscious as we cross this line is how we support natural progression and work from a success to a success.
I feel the horse world (and the world at large) is deeply primed for a change. And I know the importance of shifting the perpetual cycle of unconscious conditioning.
Knowing the source of our actions
Humans are the only species on the earth that can self-realize. And, it would seem, we are also the only ones that need to. Because through conditioning, we have forgotten our true nature.
It is becoming more and more clear that error is terror.
We must see the error of our ways. It is plain to see the serious dysfunction in frightening proportions growing in every corner of human existence. But we have an infinite gift within us. We can self-realize and with this, see things differently. We can create a change!
Getting on board
Once we realize which source we are responding from… conditioning or conscious awareness, we can then direct our attention and our actions much more effectively.
We can get on board with this fabulous endless creation we call life. We can stop working against it and feel the infinite progression of it.
It is a miraculous experience to get out of our own way and let life take care of life.
To live in this abundant flow of nature is to realize the fundamental truth that nothing leaves its source.
Good news
To be effective in this changeful world requires a source that is constant. This source (conscious awareness) is always accessible to us. Though sadly, it is often hidden by our habitual ways. But knowing this is actually great news! Because habits can be changed. We can return home to our true nature.
The constant source that is the life force is neutral. And, it is our own true nature.
At the very core of our being is consciousness. This source does not come and go. It is the space in which all thought is delivered. And it is always effective.
To truly live in this world, but not of it, is to revere the source of all life and above all else allow this source to guide our thoughts, actions, relationships, and our evolution.
This neutral source of awareness is beyond right and wrong, and us and them. It is unity. It sees duality— and with this, is testimony that it is free of it.
It was a very challenging experience for me to let go of what I’ve always done with horses. I spent decades learning my craft. And I want to say clearly that what I learned was not wrong, good or bad what became dysfunctional was that I unconsciously applied it.
Now with this open heart I’ve also created an opened mind. With this open mind, I listen and learn in order to advance.
The subtle difference in this and what I used to do was that in the past I believed what I DID CAUSED the advancement.
Advancement is life. It is not my control of it.
I had a rich opportunity to let go of my opinions and my opinions of other peoples opinions when I broke free from my conditioning.
I won’t say it was easy. I had to battle my ego. But seeing true nature through my own eyes and having it reflect back from the eyes of my horse was all the encouragement I ever needed.
I am a fortunate one for my life has led me here. Now I want to share, so that others may experience the vast endless opportunities and the release of the burdens.
This life is worth living from the source that created it. And in doing so it would seem, that we return to Eden.
Having eaten from the tree of knowledge, we now can understand the liability of thinking we know. The contrast offers such gratitude for the freedom of pure awareness.
Our horses immediately recognize this change in us. They are completely tuned into the source of our actions. They know the difference between control and natural progression.
This shift back into neutral awareness is a gift we give ourselves and to others. No one can do it for us, but once we realize it, the doors open and the potential is infinite.

If this blog resonates with you, please consider reading my book Perfect Practice. You can read an excerpt from the book HERE.

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