Ever had those moments that you wish would never end? I have and now, when they happen, I "hang -on" to them as much as I can. The warm feelings and decreased anxiety that comes with being "in the moment" is a gift that stays with us for some time after. I have recently had the distinct priviledge of studying Equine Facilitated Learning from the HERD Institute. The concepts of "I-Thou" and "I-It" (philosophy of Martin Buber) and work of Eckart Tolle, about living "Now" are thoughly covered. I am feeling rich in, and grateful for, the knowledge.
So WHAT does this have to do with those moments that one wishes would never end? Quoted from "The Self in Relationship" "In an "I-Thou" relationship we do not experience one another, rather we stand in relation to one another. An "I-It" relationship represents the world of experience. When we experience the world, the experience does not take place between the world and ourselves : rather the experience happens within us." Those fleeting moments that we can gain time after time. The "I-Thou" moments happen when we step outside ourselves and into a moment with another. Last evening I had to check in on a horse who has had a mild injury on her right front. I stepped into a Now moment...a heart warming "I-Thou" moment that follows. Cara is an expresive, social mare and shows appreation for a social groom, horse or human, by responding in kind. As I stepped into the barn, the light from wide open windows laid a bright pattern on the stall floors. Bedded with shavings, recently cleaned, her stall was dry and the scent of "horse" was clear in the warm air. I opened the wide wooden door and stepped into the stall. Cara turned from the window to look at me with big, liquid eyes. I stepped in, and closed the door behind me. I studied her eyes and smiled. She quietly and leisurely turned to me, swinging around her haunches. As she came close she put her head on my chest and took a deep breath. We stood like this for about 30 seconds. I closed my eyes and breathed in her scent and relaxed against the pressure of her forehead on my chest. Then, I slowly reached to her wither with my right hand and gave her a scratch. Her upper lip started to move. I smiled, took a deep breath, drifted a foot back, stepped to my left and squated down by her right leg. I ran my left hand gently down the tendon and canon bone area, checking the mildly injured area. Cara turned her head to the left, put her nose on my neck and began to rub me with her upper lip. I continued to examine the leg, with both my hands and she continued to rub my neck with her upper lip. I rose after a minute and put my right hand on her withers and turned my back to her. As I began to rub her withers, she bent her neck left and began to rub my back with her upper lip. After several minutes of social grooming, I stopped rubbing and petted her glistening black neck, then told her, (in English) that I had to leave. She immediatlely put her chin on my left shoulder, and pulled me to her neck and shoulder. She hugged me like this for around 10 seconds, I stood still, feeling warm inside. Then she took a deep sigh and let me go. I smiled again and stepped slowly away from her, out of the stall, closing the door quietly as I left. I walked away with my heart warm and lingering feelings of connection. See? I "hang on" as much as I can. And I am so grateful for the ability to live Now and experience "I-Thou". Hang on to those moments as they come. All the best, Christina and Cara