The purpose of creating a bond with a horse from the intreactions of the Waterhole Rituals is so that your horse sees you as a family member and not a predator. You become part of the herd, using herd behaviors that your horse understands. What you are also doing is creating a working bond with your horse. A bond that brings about your horse's interest to want to know you more, want to be a part of your herd, and want to follow your lead. Horses are looking for a trusted, loving, caring, and strong leader who they feel will protect them and be a good leader to the herd.
A person who does not have a connection with their horse, who doesn't listen to what their horse is feeling or thinking in the moment, and doesn't care about "that side" of their horse will not be seen as a trusted leader and a part of the herd. They may even been viewed as a predator. However, we want to build trust, a heart felt bond, and a caring attitude with our horses so they won't be frightened of us. We want our horses to see us as part of the herd and as a caring, strong leader so they will feel secure and happy.
This instinct of wanting to follow a care-taking leader is still present in domesticated horses. The Waterhole Rituals bring out a horses' instincts even more by working with their natural herding behaviors and by being a leader that they can trust and feel safe with. We are creating a horse to be the best that he can be for himself and for the partnership that we are looking for.
In my current Waterhole Rituals online class I am showing my students how to build their leadership skills and bring them to a higer level using their own horses' guidance. It's a true partnership between them and their horse, where they both have a say and they both will learn from each other in a joyful, organic way.
You teach your horse how to conduct himself as if he was in a herd that was harmonious. He learns what you accept as polite behavior in regards to your personal space and because this is all done at Liberty, your horse gets to let you know what he feels is acceptable to him in regards to his personal space. It becomes a pleasant conversation between you and your horse instead of a dictatorship. Your horse is given the freedom to say what he wants and so are you. It's amazing what happens when you actually listen to your horse with your heart. When you connect that "feeling" is palpable.
Before you can get deeper into the Waterhole Rituals there needs to be a true heart-felt connection made with your horse through Sharing Territory. Once you feel it there will be a natural shift in you and you will know exactly when it happens. The light bulb will go off and this will create a knowing in you as to how to approach your horse like you have never known before. Your horse goes through the same thing and there will be a shift in his consciousness. A cross species bond will occur that is life changing for both you and your horse.
From this experience it will create in you an ability to influence your horse effortlessly and naturally and increase your horse's respect, trust, and bond with you all at the same time.
This shift is so noticeable that it is a life changing experience that is truly humbling. You will experience a gratefulness that warms your heart. When this happens you have become a part of your horse's herd and him yours.
Here are a few examples of when this happened for some of my current students:
Classroom Comment from Sophie Hunter:
Spring is heightening everybody’s energy. I am sharing territory with Pamuk, the others are grazing a little further away. Pamuk is facing me as I sit on a rock. She sleeps. I just realized how different everything feels compared to my last class with you. During these 6 months a lot of things seem to have come to light and now that I took to my journal again it pops up to my consciousness. How more relaxed I am, how my confidence has grown, how the whole interaction with the horses happen more fluidly.
I am really looking forward to this new course. I have chosen Pamuk instead of Bozo because I feel, now that Pamuk has begun to like me, she will be easier to work with and my skills will be better when I come back to Bozo later on. A few months ago she has started shinning, through her eyes, through her thick muddy fur, expanding in beauty and happiness. She used to be quite sour with the other horses and bite or charge at them when she was frustrated. I think this is not as frequent any more. She was also very bossy and would not allow Bozo to come close to ceylan. Now she is not so much of a control freak either. She is slowly letting go of her nasty past and we are all very happy with the change. She was working in front of a carriage/taxi for a few years. When the previous owner got her she was pregnant with bozo. He didn’t know until the last weeks. Then her granddaughter did the same trick to me. Haha.
Life is full of surprises. Looking forward to more.
You are in the zone and you got there facing big Challenges.. No fences and horses in a herd that had many issues of not trusting people. But they had their freedom and they had you. I do believe that what makes a difference is this peace that I ask the class to find in the moment and being comfortable with things as they are and just to take each step as it is offered. From there we find the magic of how to talk to horses and train horses in fruitful ways.
Life is like that, Carolyn
Classroom Comment from Jayne Forster:
Some notes from my journal: After the last 4 months Sharing Territory in the cold and wet, with nothing much happening, it's as if finally Maya is ready! Its been her decision, something in her has opened up and softened, she is showing me I need to remain patient and not want it too much. Maya has taught me today how important sharing territory is. I already knew this lesson from Noons but Maya has just made it seem more so. I have been lucky to get a passing Hi. Today she was so different really meaningful, interested hello’s. I am feeling so connected to her without trying to be. When I Share Territory I can ‘feel’ her now. I can feel her presence and emotions more. Even when I am engrossed in my book. Its like something subconcious. Its wonderful. It makes me feel more connected to everything around now, as if we are sharing that connection with the world instead of experiencing it apart. I am so happy this has happened at this moment. I am not sure I am expressing how this feels very well in words, but i know I will look back at my notes and remember the feeling. Its fragile i must not want it too much.
Feeling rather in love now. Now I can start to see who she is. I feel like she has decided to choose me now.
I just wrote what I was feeling today and wanted to share it.
What good news. This is what I want my class to experience. When you get to the place when your horse makes a true choice to seek you out and then the bond takes off this is were you learn something important about how to connect with a horse. Knowledge comes to you in how to communicate with your horse and understand who your horse truly is. The Rituals start to have more meaning and purpose.
It is important as you go forward that you stay in this zone. Keep with the program like a child with each Ritual and every moment. Remember when I said to you that doing the second horse we can go too fast. I think you now know what I was talking about.
Thank you for sharing your experience.
Here is another wonderful example of connecting to horses through a heart felt bond, written by Linda Salinas, Certified Instructor.
Have a great weekend! Be on the lookout for new horse and human sightings and may the horse be with you.
Carolyn Resnick Method Certified Trainer's Next Clinics: