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TOPIC: Meditatio training - how to progress with the horse

Meditatio training - how to progress with the horse 4 years 11 months ago #88

  • Maksida Vogt
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When we stop traditionall riding, what we shall do then and how shall we progress further with our horses?

To many people this is a point in time, when they are unsure what to do with the horse instead of riding; and how to start a new kind of training. This introduction is meant for the people, who are in that transition, at the very beginning of the new way, at the beginning of the discovery about the horses nature. Experience shows that this step is important and for many people, it is needed as a foundation into the process it is for when we do not want to follow the traditional way of dealing with horses anymore but we feel there is more. When we want to discover the true nature of the horse beyond that which we usually see around us in sport and in riding stables, then this introduction gives us a way forward.

In the conventional sense we do not have training per se, we have being together with our horses, we have friendship, we have love and we have trust. Out of this our training is formed. There is no sense for you to begin the training on the base of free will if you do not conceive of these factors, the horse will simply not respond to you. You must be able to give without expectation of getting something, only when you can achieve this way will the horse fully open to you. The first queston you should ask yourself is:

- Why do I have a horse?

This is the beginning of everything and to understand aims and complete philosophy of this Academia, to understand how to be with the horse, how to work with the horse in another way. To be able to see the horse the way they are and to be able to communicate on their level, to be able to ask without expectation and to get and accept an conscious answer.

Everybody who starts to work with the Meditatio of Academia, will find themselves in the situation of experiencing the horse in completely different way, with awakening spirit and completely different reactions. One will notice how your relationship changes, how your horse opens to you.

This is only the beginning.
Following this path the opening and relationship develops more and more and you experience things you never would think are possible. Everything depends of course on the human and the relationship as to how fast this develops. The horses only mirror us. We develop, we act in another way to them, and they just mirror. The more you are able to progress in your own development (understanding, no demanding, realizing how energy and life flows, realizing the true spirit of horses, learning anatomy, working with horses in this way and many other different things) the more you progress in relationship with the horse, the more the horse opens to you, the more they are ready to communicate with you.
Stepping on this path you start to evolve in other parts of your life similarly, not only with the horses. Behind our work with horses is a complete way of life, if we open to discover it.

Do not expect to see change or to change all at once. It is a relaxed process, you just live it. Try to listen to your horse they will tell you what you are doing well and what you are doing wrong. The horse must have the feeling you expect NOTHING, and you love him just because (you can not lie to the horse). Not because they are doing something for you. And even if they will never do Haute Ecole movements or something else you desire from them in the moment, you will love them anyway.

It is we who must develop if we want horses to open to us. For many people this is something they simply can not even understand. Our human world is very goal oriented. Horses are not, they live by a different code.
Listening to the horse you will learn, they do not want to live in a box, they want to move freely, they need to live in a herd, they need to have their natural eating rhythm. You will understand how humiliating it is that we keep them conventionally. You will understand we first must satisfy their ESSENTIAL NEEDS and then we may ask something from them. Many things are not to change immediately, but in this developing process we are trying to do our best to change all these things for our horses, because we listen to them and we UNDERSTAND and we develop at our own natural pace through this process of becoming.

Before we start to teach the horse, we first have to build a relationship. That means spending time with horse doing "nothing" (we usually always have an agenda with our horses, we are doing too much, we are always doing too much), doing nothing means watching, developing feeling, exploring body language observing their rhythms.

Try to encourage your horse to show you if they do not like something you are doing. This is the first step. Your horse must know, they will NEVER be punished and can express themselves FREELY. Without fear to be punished your horse will understand this very soon and probably start to use every opportunity to test if you really mean this. Maybe they will bite you or kick at you if you do not listen to them and do not accept one NO as a answer. Only if you do not punish the horse will they open to you and you will learn very soon to listen to them – the first step of communication. If you listen to your horse and communicate in the right way, your horse will NEVER bite or kick you. As said, they only mirror. There is huge amount of communication that happens before the gross expression of a bite or a kick that people conventionally miss.

We do not teach any lesson before we "feel" this lesson. Very very important to think about.

When I have spent time with my horse (it may take even several months or years till I get to know my horse truly), then I will start to "ask" him playfully to follow me freely, to turn with me, to stop with me, to run with me. I will move on to being able to play different games as ball game, whip game, swishing whip, thinking games like to ask horse to give you halter in different colors for example... there are no boundaries for the imagination. When I have connection with my horse, when I feel unity, when I have built communication then I will start to teach lessons for the joy of interacting, NOT earlier.
The first steps then to lead horse with cordeo will happen in game, playfully. If I have built relationship with my horse, and done all this steps which I have described, there will be no problem to lead horse with cordeo, it will be most natural for him to react to my movements and comply.

It is not advisable to work with the horse longer then 10 minutes or to ask something more then 3 times. If something does not work today try again some other time. You should not let your horse feel you are disappointed because they have not done something you have asked. It is you who has not explained well or who will not accept they don't want to, it is you who cannot accept a NO.

The first principle of Academia is that horse should have a choice.

Do not make your horse do something to get reward. It is also not so good to make the horse do something with treat, especially not stretching, there is a greater danger then of the horse overstretching.

It is advisable to teach the horse to follow your finger. You may ask your horse to give you their leg and stretch it gently as far as your horse allows this. You should groom with your horse like horses do with each other. When your horse trusts you they will groom you back.

Try not to touch your horse to make him understand what you mean. There is no need for this. Try to explain without touching. If communication is built, your horse will understand you. It is a very good exercise for us, to learn to communicate just with our body language or voice, not touching the horse. It helps us to understand our horse better and also to school our abilities in communication. Try to develop the feeling of when your horse has not understood you or when they say NO. Do not try to MAKE your horse do something, try to ask. Without expectation. Just ask.
Soon another world will open to you and you will find yourself seeng horses completely differently, you will see them more and more for who they really are.

They are allowed to express themselves without fear of being punished for this. First this freedom has to be developed, allowed. And then follows communication. And then awaking spirit. And then preparing your horse's body for lessons. And then lessons if your horse and you choose to like them.

Welcome to the other way of thinking and perceiving of horses, the world of realizing that horse is not there for our own pleasure nor for achieving results of any kind, but this is the place where the horse is given complete freedom of choice and we may delight in them all that they are.
"...And the gods whispered to the animal, trust no man in whose eyes you do not see yourself reflected as an equal . "
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