I have been traveling the world for the last ten years sharing the wisdom of horses in the EFLC work. My work has taken me to several continents. People from more countries than I can count have been touched by the wisdom of horses and have brought the philosophies, lodged deeply in their hearts, back to their communities.
During each trip there are several noteworthy moments. Many of those are at the round pen with the participants as they are learning from Horse. At each location I also experience my own significant moment with one or more of the horses I meet. These powerful moments confirm my life purpose and journey as a spokesperson for the earth and her creatures.
At Mel Fleming’s ranch in Moonbi, Australia my personal and special moment actually happened during an early morning photo shoot. I was not that excited for the shoot or to be in front of the camera. However, I had made the commitment so I wanted to proceed forward.
Mel, Louise (the photographer) and I walked down the hill to the pastures. Four of Mel’s Equine Masters were resting under a tree enjoying the cool shady morning temps before the heat of the day began to creep onto the land. Matriarch, Alchemist, Spirit and Helium, standing very still, appeared to be part of the tree itself.
Mel suggested I get under the tree with the horses. I walked slowly toward the solid squat tree in the field of golden grass. Under the branches the shadows enveloped me and I felt the energy of the herd. My resistances around the camera completely disappeared as I forgot about the task we had set forth to achieve.
As I enter, all four horses, one by one, slowly turned their long bodies around so that their massive chests, warmblood bodies and heads were close to mine. The shadow of the tree created a private, intimate circle of exchange. My heart softened and expanded with the pure delight and joy. Their beauty was all I could see, smell and touch. It was just me and the herd.
Matriarch was the first to offer herself to me as she moved her large bright eye next to my face, her warm body barely pressing ever so gently toward me. Just enough pressure to let me know she was right there. Then followed Spirit and Alchemy to join her and I felt held ever so softly.
It was Helium, the big red chestnut, that humbled me. Slowly and very intentionally he moved in next to me. Helium, originally from Germany, lived in the US at the Parelli campus, and now lives here with Mel. Helium is well known in the Parelli circles as being a very difficult horse to train and ride, sensitive and complicated, with an amazing ability to buck high for a very long time. He is not a horse for just any human. It seemed that Mel, with her deep kindness, steady energy and calm nature, was truly the only person for Helium. Helium carries his power like no other horse I have met.
As he stood next to me his head dropped down and he began to lick and chew. Then came the deep yawns as he stretched his neck and jaw upward. And finally his eyes rolled back showing the white, big blink of his lids and his body completely soft. On and on he expressed himself this way. My breath deepened in my heart space and time slowed. And I knew his gesture was for me.
After leaving my own herd behind in Colorado and traveling 3 flights and 28 hours to get to my destination in Australia, Helium was giving me something that no human could. Under the shade tree Helium, a master healing horse of deep wisdom, gave me his gratitude. It was his gratitude for my presence at Mel’s ranch. And it was even more than that. He gave me gratitude from all of the horses. Not just the horses at Mel’s, but ALL horses.
It is these moments, and often just seconds that keep me going. When my body is weary from travel, the work in the office never is done, and my emotional body feels the burdens of human suffering, it is these moments that lift me to more possibilities, to levels of renewed hope, of knowing that my work is important. No matter how small I am in the bigger world, each person that I can help to see HORSE in their true nature brings more light to this earth. A moment like this, with a master horse like Helium, humbles me.
Helium, Matriarch, Spirit and Alchemy are speaking through me to all of you. You must always remember the Way of the Horse. Each moment that you become more present, wide open in your being and heart, conscious of the power of your thoughts, and willing to do what it takes to contribute to others, you will know you have served. Each time you take a moment from your busy life to go Under the Shade Tree, to smell the horses, to feel the pulsing of the earth coming through you, to expand your spirit in your human form, you will receive from them their gratitude and blessings.
They want you to remember everyday to go “Under the Shade Tree” . . .
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