Last weekend, we were lucky enough to have classical riding master, Charles de Kunffy in for a clinic. We have been bringing him in twice a year for many years now and each time we count our blessings that as a man in his 80s, he continues to impart his wisdom on those willing to learn.
In his Saturday lecture he said something simple yet very profound. He said “the magic lies in taking a piece of nature and elevating it to art.” He probably said it much more eloquently than that but you get the idea. This was the first time in all these years that I heard him refer to training as magic and it really resonated with me.
In our pursuits to become the best rider we can be we must not lose sight of our main objective - amplification of the horses gaits through gymnastic exercises aimed to supple and strengthen the body and calm the mind. Only through patience and understanding of the horses character and physiology can we sculpt our horses into willing and eager partners.
If we can move from ego into a higher plane of existence we can create a beautiful piece of living art, that is the horse. As the sculptor uses his hands to mold clay into something to inspire, we can use our body and intention to create a harmonious experience where both horse and rider unite by the force of love and compassion into something truly magnificent. As the sculptor creates, so do we, as riders, and as with any artistic endeavor, we discover a more honest, authentic version of ourselves along the way.
If we allow love and kindness to be our guide, we cannot falter. It’s when we are rooted in ego and the need for external validation that we allow our path to be clouded with insecurity. This path can only lead to suffering- not just our own, but our equine partner as well.
Can you think of a time you lost your patience with a horse? Perhaps you were overcome with frustration, not necessarily with your horse but with yourself for not being a good enough rider. Or perhaps you doubted yourself or became angry for a mistake that you made in the past that is coming back up now.
In these moments, be kind to yourself. Be kind to your horse. Horses are so incredibly energetically sensitive- they can feel your emotional state immediately. Take a moment prior to each ride to center yourself with some deep breathing. Connect with your intention to provide your horse with a training session that will allow his body to feel more supple and his mind to be more relaxed.
By all means, set goals but be mindful of your mental and emotional state as you work towards those goals. Keep your horse a willing partner and don’t make him into a machine just to bend to your will. Let love always be your guide.
This is where the magic happens- connecting into the beauty of divine inspiration and allowing it to be creatively expressed through your communion with the horse.
I wish you the most beautiful, divinely guided rides for you in the coming weeks, that you may find connection to that magic- we all have access to it, if only you know to look within your own heart. And please, embrace the magic.
I invite you to Awaken to the Truth of your Divine nature. You are love, you are loved and you are always enough.