By: Deb Kitchenmaster Have you ever had a conversation with someone and wondered what zone they live in? You know, it’s like what are we talking about here? They tend to speak a language that creates confusing pictures in your mind as you listen. There are also people whose language is more like an artist with a paintbrush in their hand as they stoke each sentence with heartfelt conversation. You sense something INSIDE -- a ‘new,’ ‘fresh’ kind of language. I’m laughing as I remember a conversation I had with my daughter back in the day. She looks at me and asks, “Mom, do we always have to have intense (deep) conversations? I mean, do you think maybe we could just talk about the weather sometime?” Seriously, that NEVER occurred to me. I did GET the message and I heard her loud and clear. The rest of the story is, I took her advice to heart. The next time we had a mother/daughter connection, I made a sincere effort and talked about the weather. Basically, she started laughing halfway through my sincere weather reporting, and told me how lousy I was on this level of communication. You know what? She’s absolutely right! We had a great laugh! As you interact with your horse, you will engage with leadership, language, and love; hopefully in equal doses. Language is important on so many levels. Let’s talk about our souls. Our soul is located midpoint between spirit and matter, somewhat like a rainbow bridging earth and sky. Soul is a different reality than body. It is eternal. It hears with eternal ears, sees with eternal eyes, and smells with eternal nose. Its presence resonates with that “other dimension.” It has NO language. Therefore, it speaks in imagery – the only way it can communicate eternal truths to beings that are both eternal and temporal. “Matter” is not seen merely with the natural eye, but is perceived with the inner eye. Voilà! When matter is perceived, the soul has created an image. Perception requires imagination, creativity, and reflection. Now, let’s saddle up and go on a little trail ride with Aristotle. “And of course the brain is not responsible for any of the sensations at all. The correct view is that the seat and the source of sensation is the region of the heart.” The words “heart” and “soul” are interchangeable. There is a danger in becoming too brain-focused when looking at horse/human relationships. We need to be more aware of the heart’s intelligence. We more-than-likely will find ourselves “stuck” in going forward with our horse if we are singly analytical. We need to invite our soul to meet their spirit. HORSE AND SOUL #1 – A twelve-year-old girl sends a card expressing her experience with the horses … “Keep listening with your heart/soul, not just your ears, because horses gave me that advice to pass on to others.” HORSE AND SOUL #2 – A teenager who is in weekly professional counseling tells her friend (Lucy) who asked, “How’s it going?” that all is going well. “I just tell them what they want to hear, get up, and walk out the door after I have had the required time with my counselor.” Lucy, who has been spending time with horses, responds by saying, “Oh, my horse would never let me get by with that! My horse knows exactly where I am and she holds me accountable. My horse knows when I’m real and when I’m not. She doesn’t let me get away with anything!” Note to teens: You may be able to fool a human, but you will not fool a horse. HORSE AND SOUL #3 – I asked, “Does this horse speak to you?” “Yes,” she responded. “How do you know this horse is speaking to you?” I asked. “HERE,” she answered, thumping her stomach area gently. “I feel it here.” Curious, I asked, “What is that place where you hear the horse speaking to you?” She tenderly said, “It’s my soul; my heart.” And the HORSE AND SOUL stories continue. Note to self: “The best way to relate to a horse is to have the courage to follow your heart.” MERRY CHRISTMAS ya’ll! Your “NEIGH”bor By: Deb Kitchenmaster

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