"When I bestride him, I soar, I am a hawk;
He trots the air;
The Earth sings as he touches it;
The basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the Pipe of Hermes;
He is pure air and fire."

William Shakespeare

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Horse as Healer

Is it coincidence that the physician's Hippocratic oath, named after the "father of medicine" carries in it the Greek word for horse -- hippo? A horse's capacity for acting as a catalyst for the healing of the human soul is rapidly being demonstrated in relatively new modalities of equine assisted physical and mental health therapies.

The horse's role as the intuitive observer and mirror of the human lies in its prey animal status, for, in order to survive, the horse must be vigilant in all matters to a degree that we, as predators, do not utilize in our daily relationship to our world. The horse lives in the here and now, not ruminating about the past nor fretting for the future. He reacts immediately to the subtle feedback he is getting in the moment and this provides a powerful tool for the human.

After eons of the human using the horse as a mode of transportation, beast of burden, and "recreational vehicle" we are finally opening ourselves to the possibilities of the horse as teacher and physician. And he has much to say.

Welcome to Epona's Muse.

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