The greater the fearlessness, the greater the spirit's ability to grow and connect with that around it.
Fearlessness of course is the lack of fear. So what is fear? The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines fear as "a strong unpleasant feeling caused by being aware of danger or expecting something bad to happen." Just reading that makes my stomach roll with a strong unpleasant feeling. So instead, let's be fearless in this world.
Horses, for example, can teach you how to be fearless. Horses don't just feel fear, not just sense it, they can smell fear. And although you can fear horses they can still teach you how not to fear. You see, the more you fear, the more they will fear you. They look at you when you fear and the unpleasant feeling wells up inside of them and they expect danger to come and when they don't see what the danger is, they think that they need to fear you.
So how do you become fearless? You trust. And how do you trust? You relax on the inside and let the fear fall away. And how do you relax in front of a 2000 pound horse? You look into his eyes and realize at that moment, he is looking back at you trusting that you will trust that he will not hurt you. It is a humble moment when a horse leans in fearlessly and snuggles you. Once you look into those big brown eyes, the world melts away. Nothing else matters in those moments, nothing, absolutely nothing.
Teachers Of Fearlessness
Some of my greatest teachers are horses. Mabel and I would just stand together and look out into the pasture after grooming and massage where she taught me much about life and how a horse lives to be 36 years old by doing her own horse yoga to stay limber and relaxed. Although she was wild she would let me lean in and hug her. She would talk to me in her deep Acadian voice and teach me her tender hearted wisdom while I basked in reverence of her unending beauty. Sensing, feeling, smelling, seeing, hearing nature all around us. Nothing was more important in those moments than that. Bud and I stand forehead to forehead, snuggling into each other, gazing into each others eyes. And when he knows the world has been harsh, he uses his charm to rally me on and nothing is more important in those moments than that. Little baby Spirit and I snuggle and when he sleeps I massage his body into a deep relaxing sleep where he dreams so deeply, his lips quiver as if he is whispering sweet nothings into the ethers. And nothing is more important than those moments that touch your heart so tenderly that love overflows.
Moments of Love
Those are the moments when time stands still in your heart. It can last for moments or hours as the day passes by and it's ok because nothing is more important in those moments than sharing those moments. The moments when love enters your soul and reaches out all around you to fill the spaces, the tiny cracks and crevices you didn't know you had left open. The kind of love that makes you feel whole and completely safe and loved in the world. The kind of love that grows inside of you. Those moments when you just want to stay there forever because you realize nothing else matters in those tender moments.
Horses can make you feel so completely peaceful and content inside. They are so magnetic and pure of heart. And if you're lucky you can find a special person in this world that makes you feel that way too. It’s hard to explain exactly, but you'll know when you feel it.
But alas when you must carry on in the world, you leave with that feeling still inside you. And although you enter back into the harsh reality of the world, you have shared a part of yourself that only you and they can understand. And although the world is harsh, it doesn't really matter anymore because the love in those moments that matter has replaced any fear as you enter the world fearlessly.
Walk With Love
The opposite of fear is love. What we call life is not a competition, it's about sharing love, feeling love, being love. It's about finding those moments where nothing else matters in those special moments, but love. While fear may tempt us to return to it, know that the greatest of all emotions in this world is love. Walk instead with love in your heart to experience moments that matter.
Maria Lisa Polegatto
July 3, 2016
(Mabel was a wild Sable Island Horse that I dearly miss and will be in my heart forever, Bud is a 14 year old 2000 pound Black Percheron and Spirit is a 5 week old miniature foal, all who live and love everyone that come to visit them at Two Rivers Wildlife Park in Mira, Nova Scotia, Canada.)