NATURAL BORN SENSEI
The priest’s suggestion is to sit still, let your thoughts come to you, but don’t invite them to stay for tea. I smile. I am sitting with my eyes closed trying not to engage my thoughts, not an easy task for a daydreamer like me. I instantly liked the Buddhist priest leading the ‘come as you are’ retreat and the more I learn about him and his unconventional approach to meditation the more I trust my instinct. He named his retreat after a Curt Cobain song after all. On the third day we go to the hot springs, while the water splashes from a little waterfall in the background we talk about sitting and meditation and I joke. I prefer to hang out with horses for meditational purposes. His answer surprises me. ‘What are the important things to remember when you are working with a horse? Awareness, being in the moment, patience, posture, knowing what your body is doing and observing what reaction it causes… That is a perfectly sensible way of meditating…’
So next time I go to The Horse Shelter I look at the horses in a different way. The Horse Shelter is a non-profit that rescues horses, rehabilitates and trains them before they get adopted into new homes. It may be a non-profit but I knew before going to my volunteer orientation that I was going to profit form this experience. After having this insightful conversation with the Buddhist priest I can’t help but see each one of these creatures as a teacher… a sensei. They never forgot to trust their instinct, their mind does not get clouded by judgment. There is no judging ego. Horses teach by giving you all the tools you need to figure it out yourself.
I wish it was a better known fact that there are incredible horses out there for any type of rider!