As I have been spending more time with Remington and his pasture mates….in their pasture……. I have been experiencing a shift in consciousness that I did not anticipate. During the first few weeks, it was all about establishing hierarchy amongst the four of us. Luke, the oldest is the Herd Boss. Next in line is Remington and the youngster William is last. Horses in herds develop these roles not just for safety and order, but for socialization, comfort and to create a sense of harmony. Unlike predators they are prey animals, so maintaining a system of organization is not only necessary for their survival, but for their peace of mind. Even though these boys are not living in the wild, they still carry the same ancient genes of their ancestors…it’s one of the most fascinating facts about domesticated horses. They remain “wild” in ways that captivate us, entrance us and ultimately cause us to want to be with them and their mysterious wisdom. We hope they might help us touch upon our own ancient ways, finding more harmony and peace like they do.
As I have helped the boys learn that when I am in their pasture with them, it is I that is the Herd Boss, our dynamic has changed. They don’t experience me as a predator or as another two-legged who’s just going to make them do stuff to suit my own needs. (as is true for so many horses who are ridden and/who perform in various equine sports). So, as an accepted member of their herd and the established leader, they feel secure, safe and content enough to show their true selves to me. They don’t have to be on the watch for me to come over and demand something of them. Instead they watch me sit in my chair while enjoying my lunch, or wandering the pasture, standing under the shade of the majestic oak trees, or simply just taking in the wonder and natural essence of the beautiful farm where they live. (It is a magical place; miles away from the city and surrounded by mountainous hills and valleys, plentiful wildlife and a genuine peace that is permeable).
The other day when I was relaxing in my chair, just watching the boys grazing together at the other end of their large pasture I found myself slipping into another dimension….an altered state of consciousness in which I became merged with all the sounds, smells, textures and energy of that moment. It was a pure and all-encompassing state of presence. Time became irrelevant as a sense of profound peace and oneness overcame me. I don’t know how long I remained in this state, but as I slowly came “back”, I looked up and all three horses were making their way over to me and came to stand around me.
“So, how did that feel?”, they all inquired. “You just entered OUR world. That’s where we live all the time. You can do it too, you know. Just let go and merge into it. It’s a field that surrounds you and is a part of you all the time.”
Not knowing what else to say, I was so deeply touched by this…..I just said “Thank you. I will take this with me and practice being in that state more often, especially when I am with you.”