Time has been identified throughout the ages as perhaps the most precious commodity we have. For many people, particularly in our fast-paced society and culture, time is the dictator of everything. The day is started at the sound of an alarm, and often every moment of the day is accounted for by what must happen at what particular hour. We create meaning in our lives by marking days on calendars to remind us of either its passing or what it is bringing, and time can be either a pleasant or cruel reminder of what we hold significant.
Time is, inevitably, a central concept in our lives.
As with other inevitabilities in our lives, such as emotions, relationships, or our experience of the world around us, how we choose to think about time can, and will affect how we feel about and experience it. It is in this context that we can look to our equine companions for wisdom and insight about how to think about, and therefore feel about, time.
One of the most beautiful things we can learn from horses is the ability to simply be in the moment. While they may become distracted in their time with us humans when they know that a nice flake of hay is awaiting them somewhere else, horses don’t think about what time it is or fret about how long something will take. They are excellent practitioners of the art of mindfulness and existing in the moment.
In spending time with horses, we can be intentional about joining with them in their experience and becoming part of their world for a while. This is where the “work part” may come in for us, meaning a conscious effort to leave our phones and watches elsewhere, to let go of the past, discard any worry for the future, and simply celebrate the moment before us.
Aside from considering a horse’s perspective on time and working to emulate and internalize something similar in our own experience, there is something to be said about “being on horse time”.
Put simply, when you’re on “horse time”, things just take as long as they take. Have you ever tried to rush a horse through eating? Have you ever tried to speed up the flow of water in to a horse’s bucket with your mind? There are opportunities, golden ones if you’re a recovering time-compulsive individual such as myself, when you share time with horses to abandon all care for what the hour is, how long it will take, or what needs to happen next. There is simply nothing you can do about it should you allow yourself that freedom for even a brief period of your life.
What a gift to be able to unburden the yoke of the clock for a while. For some who are gifted with living a fluid lifestyle with less concern or need for deadlines and dates, this practice may come easily. Many others, however, have been swept away by the speedy current in which our society flows from a very early age.
As with so many other lessons we can learn from our equine companions, it is a conscious choice on our part to be willing to acknowledge what causes stress in our lives and consider another way of experiencing things. We here at Red Moon Ranch invite you to honor yourself with the gift of letting time slip away for a while with the confidence that there is no wasted moment when sharing time and space with a horse.