Emotional Message Chart

Here is the typeset version of the Emotional Message Chart from Guiding Principle 1:
Power Of The Herd Emotional Message Chart

Print this out and carry it with you in your wallet or purse so that you always have it to hand when you need it.


  1. Ianrowcliffe on May 20, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    Right about the absence of horses:1966: This was the last year that recruits were taught to ride and care for horses. Since then, horses have only been used for the Musical Ride, ceremonial events or public relations.

    (Reference: http://www.mountieshop.com/new/history.asp)

    Hence, you do get left with ‘just’ a list of values – a decontextualized one. Nevertheless, it easy for ‘us’ to imagine how they may have been horse powered into existence.

    Rain here, too, but lots of grazing so I am not complaining.

  2. Ianrowcliffe on May 20, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    I was wondering whether history may have some lessons for us, so I looked up the Canadian Mounted Police and found their Mission, Vision and Values. Amazingly, these coincide very closely to core ideas Linda is promoting.

    See: http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/about-ausujet/mission-eng.htm

    It occurred to me as well, though, that, with the loss of close connection with horses, the implementation of the mission statement may have been eroded somewhat…

    Would anyone like to comment on this???

    • Susan Garvin on May 20, 2012 at 4:33 pm

      Hi Ian, Hi everyone. thanks for posting Ian, I was actually planning to look in at the symposium site while on my way home from a dripping afternoon with my horses….and there you were to greet me! Interesting the points in the mission etc statement, some fantastic values there, although having been through so many of them with Linda and seeing how complex they are one does find the list a tad glib almost!!! I missed the ‘how’ of it all, somehow the values sound a bit hollow because the ideas are so easy to list but, as we are exploring with Linda, so hard to re-find within ourselves in the world as it is today. I was also most distressed and disappointed to find that there was nothing, I mean NOTHING about the horses themselves, nothing! even the dogs get a little bit of attention, not much but at least their existence is acknowledged….or did I miss the page on the horses themselves somewhere? For me that answers your musings on the connection ‘may have been eroded somewhat’…..!

  3. Ian Rowcliffe on February 16, 2012 at 9:43 pm

    Re:Develop “High Tolerance for Vulnerability”

    Yes, this principle is coming through stronger than most. With the break-down in communications (for technical reasons this time), you very soon realize that ‘if it is to be, it is up to me’, which means you have to come to terms with all this alone…

    And so I find myself battling with the notion of ‘authentic self’ haunted and challenged by the following:

    All is Truth. by Walt Whitman
    O ME, man of slack faith so long!
    Standing aloof—denying portions so long;
    Only aware to-day of compact, all-diffused truth;
    Discovering to-day there is no lie, or form of lie, and can be none, but grows as
    itself as the truth does upon itself,
    Or as any law of the earth, or any natural production of the earth does.

    (This is curious, and may not be realized immediately—But it must be realized;
    I feel in myself that I represent falsehoods equally with the rest,
    And that the universe does.)

    Where has fail’d a perfect return, indifferent of lies or the truth?
    Is it upon the ground, or in water or fire? or in the spirit of man? or in the meat and

    Meditating among liars, and retreating sternly into myself, I see that there are really no
    liars or
    lies after all,
    And that nothing fails its perfect return—And that what are called lies are perfect
    And that each thing exactly represents itself, and what has preceded it,
    And that the truth includes all, and is compact, just as much as space is compact,
    And that there is no flaw or vacuum in the amount of the truth—but that all is truth
    And henceforth I will go celebrate anything I see or am,
    And sing and laugh, and deny nothing.

    And so, rightly, in the end, ‘False Self’ does, eventually, find recognition and relevance as Linda foresees, but in a back seat stabilizing position – ‘clear reason rooted in the feelings of the body and open to transcendental shafts of wisdom’.

    I am glad that I have worked that through. I feel better now, more at one with myself again.

    • LindaKohanov on February 17, 2012 at 6:55 pm

      Yes, Ian, I do think that the “false self,” which is simply a collection of all of our habits, methods, limited beliefs, etc., is useful when it takes a back seat, as you say. Sometimes our old habits, methods, degrees, are useful, if they remain subserviant to a more imaginative, fluid intelligence that is characteristic of what we are calling the “authentic self.” Developing a high tolerance for vulnerability is, in part, what allows us to step out of those old habits and experiment, make mistakes, and learn from them. And we can’t collaborate with others if we aren’t willing to feel vulnerable, to step out of our old ways of perceiving and relating to the world. All innovators need to feel vulnerability and act in spite of it, not rush back into the cage of the old habits.

      Love the poem!

      • Ian Rowcliffe on February 20, 2012 at 8:41 am

        Thanks for expanding on this Linda. I was particularly struck by the turn of phrase, ‘cage of old habits’ – it reminds me of Blake’s ‘coffin’ in the Chimney Sweeper poem:

        When my mother died I was very young,
        And my father sold me while yet my tongue
        Could scarcely cry ‘weep! ‘weep! ‘weep! ‘weep!
        So your chimneys I sweep, and in soot I sleep.

        There’s little Tom Dacre, who cried when his head,
        That curled like a lamb’s back, was shaved: so I said,
        “Hush, Tom! never mind it, for when your head’s bare,
        You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair.”

        And so he was quiet; and that very night,
        As Tom was a-sleeping, he had such a sight, –
        That thousands of sweepers, Dick, Joe, Ned, and Jack,
        Were all of them locked up in coffins of black.

        And by came an angel who had a bright key,
        And he opened the coffins and set them all free;
        Then down a green plain leaping, laughing, they run,
        And wash in a river, and shine in the sun.

        Then naked and white, all their bags left behind,
        They rise upon clouds and sport in the wind;
        And the angel told Tom, if he’d be a good boy,
        He’d have God for his father, and never want joy.

        And so Tom awoke; and we rose in the dark,
        And got with our bags and our brushes to work.
        Though the morning was cold, Tom was happy and warm;
        So if all do their duty they need not fear harm.

        I rather think that the ‘angel’ in the poem has reappeared as a series of horses in our lives, challenging again and again the status quo…

  4. Ian Rowcliffe on January 19, 2012 at 10:58 am

    As Jememy Rifkin has come up in the conversation, others might be interested in this review of his recent book, The Empathic Civilization contrasted with another also including elements such as empathy … surprisingly and manipulatively.


    Linda also mentions Frans de Waal’s – his book, The Age of Empathy. So this youtube concerns and raises a point we have started to discuss with Linda:

    The dark side of empathy – where another book, Snakes in Suits is mentioned


    All this will be of concern to us, as, like virtually everything else, Empathy can be a two edged sword – hence, enabling people to use it implies a framework of accountability – the founding stones in Linda’s cathedral thinking, based on authenticity and integrity.

    • Ian Rowcliffe on January 26, 2012 at 1:39 pm

      As we wait for Linda’s reaction to Comet’s passing, I have been re-reading Riding between the Worlds. And there she mentions Harriet Lerner, too, (Susan) and the notion of “Change Back” when people start to move on with their lives. Here, we can see that the ‘power of the Herd’ can also be counter- productive. For we do need creative solutions that address the present… which brings me to one of Linda’s founding idea:

      The universe is artistic not opportunistic.

      I have been thinking about that and comments made by Susan about how often those at the leading edge are scooped by those coming later who reap enormous benefits. And so you get to think about the way of horses and how Comet was there for Rasa almost an invisible presence in comparison but one no less important.

      And so returning to Linda’s idea, what we witness is two hands, the giving and the taking one. From a human perspective we know that we can’t have one without the other. Or if we were to, there would be an imbalance.

      Yet, what we also notice is that roles are not static – witness the Kennedy family – and so giver and taker may exchange positions from time to time.

      Oh, yes, I have also re-read Rasa’s passing…

      Just chewing all this over trying to make sense of the message behind the emotion.

      • susan garvin on January 27, 2012 at 8:25 am

        Hi Ian, interesting your trains of thought, one or two immediate questions for you – re the POTH being counter-productive, not sure you meant exactly counter-productive? i see what you mean about needing creative solutions for the present but I also see that what POTH is offering is BOTH a starting point for now AND a future cathedral, it is the foundations and the first blocks of that cathedral and we don’t have to wait for the whole building to be finished before we can move into its airy spaciousness and get started! I am sure it is the same for us all, but just to speak of my limited world and experience here in a corner of tuscany, there are many many things happening here which are truly in harmony with what Linda is wrirting about, plus what all the others we discuss are saying too. the move to a different way of living our own lives, regaining our own spirituality, becoming less competitive and more collaborative, less materialistic and more valuing other aspects of life and living and so on. Examples – there are a few monthly publications dedicated to this new outlook on life, dedicated to trying to change people’s orientations with regard to saving the planet etc. There are co-housing schemes, community schemes. There is a huge awareness now, a budding and building consciousness, about the abuse of power both of politicians and the church, the mega-rich and the mega-powerful. These things don’t hit the news of course, but as one listens to the radio and to people chatting in cafes or at the bus stop, it is happening.
        Re the cutting edge being ‘scooped’ by those who come after (what a great way to descibe it!) yes, I guess it is inevitable that those who blaze the trail first go unnoticed or unsung a lot of the time, knowing how long it takes for attitudes to change, for the unspeakable, the unthinkable, the unmentionable to become common ‘normality’ (think, e.g., gay marriages in many countries/social untis now….) – it can be frustrating and saddening for the trail blazers themselves, I know.
        Must re-read Riding between the Worlds again, thanks for that prod, Ian. I will be interested to see what new insights I get out of it a few years on and having started on this ‘work’ we are doing here. Great to be discussing it! cheers, susan

        • susan garvin on January 27, 2012 at 8:27 am

          social units not untis (or aunties!!!)

        • Ian Rowcliffe on January 28, 2012 at 11:00 am

          Re:counter-productive – Well, as Linda described in the first chapter – size can become unmanageable and thus, result in smaller more effective groups being formed. Strangely this reminds me of Larry trying to bring two small groups of horses together. From a horse perspective, this will depend on available resources and space and, of course, this ‘fluctuates’ with the seasons.

          Re: re-read Riding between the Worlds again – clearly, much of what Linda has been introducing here has its origins there. Hence, Managing Contagious Emotions – is likely to talk about ‘holding the sacred space of possibility’ and maybe is depicted by the round pen representation with Authentic Self inside and Tornado Head outside. The notion of Authentic Self is what I think of as the inner child, which is unchecked by fear and loves play and innovation AND needs to grow – this is also James Hillman thinking and is cited by Linda, as well. Hence, I am guessing that it is the part of us that produces the energizing contagious emotion we may need to strike a chord in others so that their own inner child entrains with it.

          One of Linda’s points is that much of what she has discovered is very similar to archetypes in various guises around the globe. Hence, the round pen may not be really round in the static sense and clearly Linda sees A.Self as growing beyond ‘this useful yet artificial boundary’ p126

          I recognize the sacred space as what is known in Runes as Othila – the home of the heart. This, in fact, is a loop and has been adopted as a symbol of support for those with AIDS. Clearly, nobody knows how it came into existence, but it probably is a form of an embrace that stems from how a mother holds her child. Note, this embrace tightens when there is a threat and releases as the threat diminishes, protecting what is held within it. Nevertheless, it tightens softly transmitting well-being and a powerful feeling that will transcend the situation. Strangely, I discovered this as I needed to restrain a friend’s child in front of a highly nervous and dangerous horse being shod for the first time. I needed to hold her in such a say that she wouldn’t panic and get trampled and that we both could send calming energy to the horse. And it worked. The little frightened girl who had arrived left really full of herself, bubbling over with joy – but – I also received a message: never to have another horse shod.

          Anyway, it will be interesting to see Linda’s take on all this in the next chapter and lesson.

          • susan garvin on January 30, 2012 at 7:44 am

            thanks for these reflections Ian, I have nothing to add since most of what you say is new to me, it is food for thought and further study for me!
            Glad you won’t be having that, or any other, horse shod again! what a ghastly experience for the horse, and well done you for using the event to help that little girl rather than letting her get traumatised by it!

          • Ian Rowcliffe on January 30, 2012 at 8:35 am

            The paradoxical part of the situation, Susan, was, had it not been for the little girl, I might have ended up traumatized, not to mention the horse. It seems we all grew from that point on… and also picked up on the communications between the horses – the alpha mare had been trying to warn us about the farrier right from the time he arrived. I don’t know whether she had chanced on him before but she certainly knew what he was about – that he would resort to force and violence to subdue a horse. Yes, at times, you learn the hard way but learn you do!

          • LarryPucci on February 21, 2012 at 3:07 am

            Thanks Ian. Yes the blending depends on enviromental resources and it does fluctuated with the seasons. I am currently snowed in here in Denver and the blending of the two groups has come to a halt. No good area for turnout. It has been educational and stressful watching these horses being confined for so long. I can see where they know there will be an end to it and how they are dealing with each other through these tough times. I know that one of the guiding priciples fits here, i just dont know which one .

          • Ianrowcliffe on February 21, 2012 at 10:20 am

            Well, why not the first one – Use Emotion as Information? If the horses have been separated, they will need to re-establish a new sense of connection, or re-establish the herd dynamic, and when Spring comes emotions and hormones will be on the rampage. Quite often ‘suddenly’, a ‘quiet’ mare can be so full of herself that she starts kicking out at other mares and younger fillies when the herd comes together again even, or especially, when the stallion is not present. (Nevertheless, it sounds as though you are much further away from spring time than we are…)

  5. Ianrowcliffe on January 18, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Manage Contagious Emotions is what I am really looking forward to learning more about. (And we seemed to be passed the middle of the month – hint, hint!). Yesterday, I was in a situation when I walked into a school and was almost overcome by ‘negative energy’. I didn’t let myself get sucked into it and just sat down calmly and waited to be attended to. I did manage a short conversation about wanting to set up a situation to promote Emphatic thinking stimulated by horses – horse powered English by means of games and prices. Yet, I wasn’t able to get any positive energy back and the conversation was rather flat to say the least. Clearly, this is something new and new to me too, so there is lot of room for improvement.

    What is very clear is that there is an enormous disempowering sense of despair around and one’s person level of energy needs to be very high to counter it…

    And so managing contagious emotion is my top priority and the key to success, I think. So I am all ears in terms of the next lesson:-)

    • Anonymous on January 18, 2012 at 1:38 pm

      Yes! me too looking forward to the next lesson, the next conversation about the different emotions (we’ve had anger and frustration so far). did I miss something or was there no lesson prior to the third call? I don’t find it so if there was one could you let me know?
      Anyway, re contagious emotion, i think maybe your school experience was, from the point of view of the school representatives, possibly akin to the one mark describes in one of the conversations about the receptionist who resists change, or Linda’s example of the secretary who resists change. i suspect that the people you were talking to were also covering up for the fact that they didn’t really know what you were talking about and didn’t want to appear ignorant or lacking in any way so covered it up by acting disinterested, could that be the case do you think?
      I too have been in a position in the past at least twice in which I have been trying to introduce new approaches and new ideas and have failed miserably each time, on the whole. While I can recognise and accept where I went wrong in the way I presented myself and the new ideas i do also think that maybe the frustrating thing for Pioneers of all matters is that they start the trail blazing, get ridiculed/ignored/burned at the stake/exiled/fired etc etc only to see someone else but a few years later getting glory and honour for…..exactly the same ideas!!! Or at the very least getting credit for new ideas (etc) instead of being burned shot or ostracised (etc)….What’s your take on this, Ian? And maybe Linda could talk about this for us? I can see many reasons why it should go like this but I would love to hear her take on it…..Linda, are you reading me???!?!?!?!?!? 🙂

      • Anonymous on January 18, 2012 at 1:40 pm

        Oh darn it there is the anonymous again, I think this happens when I write from my work computer, which is perhaps just a way of protecting me…… 🙂 anyway it was me, Susan!

      • Ianrowcliffe on January 18, 2012 at 2:32 pm

        Hi Susan

        The next lesson for chapter three is still to come.

        Re: your analysis of the situation – you may be partly right, but I think the main problem was overload – just too much happening – things going wrong, bills to pay, complaints etc – to able to think and react. The person I talked is rather exceptional, otherwise – her grandmother died recently, which may also have contributed. So what I was saying seemed ‘water off a duck’s back’. However, ‘seemed’ is also a false friend at times. I remained aligned with my message and behaved consistently; I didn’t push; I worked at letting it happen. Often things need time to sink through, to permeate and come bubbling back. Yes, like working with a young horse who still is trying to understand what is going on around him/her.

        Your third point is so often the case, but there must be exceptions to make the rule, right:-)

        And, yes, this could be a useful case study for Linda. The interesting thing was that I only felt the negative energy coming from this one person, admittedly the one shouldered with most of the responsibility – and someone who is usually positive and forward looking – otherwise, I felt good vibrations from nearly everyone else. I also confess that I don’t quite know how to enact the next step of the process and was feeling the way myself so that it wasn’t surprising that we didn’t finalize a strategy. Anyway, who knows if something hasn’t unfolded in the meantime. At the time, though, I felt my energy wasn’t enough to tip the balance.

        Thanks for helping me work at this, Susan

        P.S. If I ever have any grand-children, I want to affect some change on education so that they don’t suffer the way the last couple of generations have! Children have been dis-empowered long enough and I believe Montessori got it right: they are the polar force of humanity. And what we are seeing today is very much a result of ‘enslaving’ them – it is time to abolish ‘people parking’ once and for all!

        • susan garvin on January 18, 2012 at 2:44 pm

          (Susan) Ah Ok well the added info does of course shed new light on possible reasons for the (non)reaction, I can see that. And indeed, what you are saying about things sinking in then bubbling back would fit in with my idea that pioneers often don’t see the results of their efforts, because they come bubbling back much later, having ‘sunk in’ through other people. Yours will hopefully happen sooner than that!
          Overload, interesting to examine how much that blocks the path for change or development….
          Education, yes I do agree re children of course but I also think that – ourselves in this symposium for example – there are many mature adults who are significant contributors also in this process, through evolving themselves I mean, not necessarily involved in educating children. I don’t atually believe that ‘the future is in our children’ alone, in other words, I see adults right now making a difference, the movement towards a way of being more like that which Linda is detailing, is increasing . I am not convinced it will make enough of a difference in time to avert implosion, but I am still able to hope!!!

          • LindaKohanov on January 18, 2012 at 3:44 pm

            Many inspiring thoughts and experiences Susan and Ian! Yes, the next lesson is managing contagious emotions. It sounds like you are already putting this to work Ian, experimenting, feeling, and thinking all at once, which is a big factor in this skill.

            I had to put one of my treasured horses down on Monday, the last member of my original herd, Comet. Can’t talk much about it at this moment. I will be writing a memorial to her later, but the Power of the Herd was active in that six members of my staff and faculty stood with us as we let Comet go in the best possible way. It was an act of emotional heroism on everyone’s part to be there. That power took the form of unflinching support in the midst of sadness—and at the same time there was great appreciation for her life and lessons and the magnficent 3 year old son she leaves behind (Melrin’s third son Orion). So I am a bit late on this third lesson. However, I have finished the complete version of GP2: Listen to your horse for the book: a much more extensive, rather long chapter on using the body as tuner, receiver and amplifier, the history of it, and some more research tied to this. I will ask Mark to post this asap.

            I’m so grateful for this amazing group of adventurous, courageous spirits convening through this symposium. Thank you for all your ideas and questions and wisdom!

          • susan garvin on January 18, 2012 at 3:53 pm

            Oh Linda, there are no words, I have been there a few times myself, and am shedding tears of empathy and condolence as I write, remembering that particular sadness. A very big supportive hug, susan

          • Ianrowcliffe on January 18, 2012 at 4:40 pm


          • LarryPucci on February 7, 2012 at 7:23 pm

            Linda, I know its a bit late in coming, but Id like to express my deepest heartfelt sympathy to you and your herd for Comets Passing.

          • Ianrowcliffe on January 18, 2012 at 4:42 pm

            Green grass affects all members of the herd – as Linda’s message for humanity it doing.

          • Ianrowcliffe on January 18, 2012 at 4:44 pm

            ‘It’ : ‘is’!

  6. Ianrowcliffe on January 3, 2012 at 11:03 am

    What a great way to begin the New Year by supplying us with more beautifully formulated principles. (there is a ‘be’ missing in number six – ‘Power does not have to harsh’ should read: Power does not have to ‘BE’ harsh…)

    I have just had time to scan through them and will be ‘chewing them over’ as I go out and tend to the horses. Yes, what an up-lifting start to the year! YES!

  7. Ianrowcliffe on December 18, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Chapter 3, page 1: Much of human brilliance is driven less by the brain in your
    head than by newly discovered intelligence centers—now called ‘brain two and brain three’—in
    the gut and the heart. And so a further principle might be:

    “Horse sense is having the guts to let your heart speak out, up and beyond the status quo … embracing the compelling future that we know must be there.”

  8. Ian Rowcliffe on December 7, 2011 at 11:14 am

    Another ‘worry’ when reading the chapter is how to distinguish the leader that brings about overall good from one with quite frankly ‘evil’ intentions. This also relates to the work on emotions and how they can mess things up big time or, if recognized as information, bring much needed benefit to others.

    ‘Authentic visionary leaders meet the needs of followers first and only then theirs.’

    This is depicted in The Horse Boy by Rupert Isaacson, page 267 amongst others. Before a healing, the most powerful reindeer shaman in Mongolia instructs payment to be made first to two other families to prevent any jealousy and to make sure everyone benefits… Hence, his actions anticipate benevolence… for he serves those around him before receiving any returns himself. It reminds me of the way an alpha mare leads the other horses to pastures new. When she stops, they all start to eat.

    • Ian Rowcliffe on December 14, 2011 at 1:25 pm

      ‘Relationships with horses require working at everyday’ – a point Carolyn Resnick makes and for me a basic principle. We, as people, may think we are above this, but the basic logic persists.

      So what is happening here?

      Am I still in time to ask for my money back? I am not rich: my horses and I need to come up with answers. Otherwise, we will starve. Where is the dialogue? What is happening? Why is nothing happening? The 90% non-verbal part of communication is all very well, but we humans require the other 10% as well.

      Horse facilities are in crisis around the globe… and nobody is saying anything … Here, in Portugal, it is as much as I can do to get the grass to grow. And, in fact, at the moment, need to buy in hay. I was hoping we would put our heads together and come up with some creative solutions. We need to project far reaching ideas that make a significant difference – the horses are willing, come on people it is time to stand up and be counted!

      • Mark on December 14, 2011 at 7:00 pm

        Hi Ian

        Thanks as ever for your input. To summarise for everyone, perhaps you can state your question or quest for which you are seeking solutions.



        • Ian Rowcliffe on December 15, 2011 at 12:49 am

          Well, how to put that in a nutshell, Mark. I imagine Linda’s Cathedral thinking to be something like Whitman’s City:

          I DREAM’D in a dream, I saw a city invincible to the attacks of the whole of the rest of

          I dream’d that was the new City of Friends;
          Nothing was greater there than the quality of robust love—it led the rest;
          It was seen every hour in the actions of the men of that city,
          And in all their looks and words.

          What strikes me at present is that Linda’s approach has been out at least since Riding Between the Worlds so that others must have gathered their own experience and be able to enlarge on it. I know this is my experience. At first, I read Linda’s books in a fairly passive way, but then later I had a fake horse trainer show up with big mental problems such that she got bitten and spooked all the horses, who took over three months to settle down again. At that point, I understood. I had first hand experience of just what incongruent behavior really meant! However, we weren’t able to make any progress with this person who was a pathological liar and left after a month. And that was a blessing as I was really concerned about the health and well-being of the horses who she was supposed to be taking care of.

          One of the outcomes of this was that we also started picking up on this women’s extreme negative energy just like the horses. However, I had messed up big time since I had entrusted the horses to her and they had lost their trust in me, especially the alpha mare. What a setback!

          However, there is no doubt in my mind about the tremendous scanning powers that horses possess. Their capacity to search out the truth appears to be an antidote to our present circumstance if only it could be brought to bear. However, despite Linda’s remarkable insights, this needs to be expressed in much more detail. At present, as you may have observed, I have been noticing that many of Walt Whitman’s poems seem close approximations. Look:

          “WHOEVER you are, I fear you are walking the walks of dreams,
          I fear these supposed realities are to melt from under your feet and hands;
          Even now, your features, joys, speech, house, trade, manners, troubles, follies, costume,
          crimes, dissipate away from you,
          Your true Soul and Body appear before me,
          They stand forth out of affairs—out of commerce, shops, law, science, work, forms,
          clothes, the house, medicine, print, buying, selling, eating, drinking, suffering, dying….”

          That fits very closely to how a horse ‘sees’ us. And so imagine the repercussions of making that a factor in people’s life. How to get that message across, that is the question! Quite a tall order I know, but isn’t that what we are here for? Isn’t this what we are trying to come up with?

          Through ’embodied’ leadership, Linda is suggesting that we can draw out or upon that quality in others, isn’t she? That we can see beyond the immediate to the essential or even the existential.

          P.S. I apologize for my impatience: a nephew of mine died of an overdose yesterday – he had so much money but never knew the joy for life a horse can impart and never will.

          • SharonAlley on December 15, 2011 at 4:49 am

            Dear Ian,

            My condolences on the loss of your nephew! It is always hard to lose a loved one, and a wise friend who’d lost her brother to suicide once said that when someone takes their own life, their
            pain is transfered to those who love them.

            Your acknowledgement that your grief over this tragic death contribute to your feeling of “impatience” helps the rest of us to see your questions above in context–as I read your questions about our process and discussion, and your urgency regarding the fate of our beloved
            horses, I found myself wondering what sparked these questions for you–like a horse sensing the incongruence of someone who is presenting only part of what they feel, I felt uneasy about how you came to feel so frustrated–and when you mention at the end of your message that you’ve just lost your nephew, this information restored the balance from my perspective. Your questions about the essential and the existential nature of being are valid and do belong in our discussion of our exploration of our connection to horses–and the picture is more complete when we can picture you mourning your nephew and asking yourself fundamental questions of life and death, the impermanent and the etermal, and about the nature of joy.

            Your Whitman quotes are wonderful–and I do believe we are participating in one facet of an important shift in consciousness that is already in motion–bringing greater clarity and love.

            I have been contemplating the Emotional Message Chart as part of my Epona apprenticeship, and the idea that sadness is connected to the necessity of letting go of something or someone, when we do not want to let go. One of my favorite poems comes to mind:

            In Blackwater Woods
            by Mary Oliver

            Look, the trees
            are turning
            their own bodies
            into pillars

            of light,
            are giving off the rich
            fragrance of cinnamon
            and fulfillment,

            the long tapers
            of cattails
            are bursting and floating away over
            the blue shoulders

            of the ponds,
            and every pond,
            no matter what its
            name is, is

            nameless now.
            Every year
            I have ever learned

            in my lifetime
            leads back to this: the fires
            and the black river of loss
            whose other side

            is salvation,
            whose meaning
            none of us will ever know.
            To live in this world

            you must be able
            to do three things:
            to love what is mortal;
            to hold it

            against your bones knowing
            your own life depends on it;
            and, when the time comes to let it go,
            to let it go.

          • Ian Rowcliffe on December 15, 2011 at 10:50 am

            Hi Sharon

            What a wonderful response – like waking up to a beautiful dream:-)

            Going back to my horse episode, our horses actually staged a rebellion. The alpha mare tried to run down the person involved. I realized that I was going to have to be extremely careful in the future about letting just anyone approach the horses. These horse don’t ‘take things sitting down’. They are an active, very dynamic, force in themselves … much more than I ever imagined. Since then, I have felt the need to understand them much, much, much more before I can risk anyone else’s life around them. Admittedly, what we witnessed was an extreme case, but in our people world, the horses would typically be judged as wrong and the ones to be ‘removed’ from the equation.

            Nevertheless, the teachings of the horses have meant a lot to me and my family alone such that we have become more balanced and forthright in our ‘dealings’ with the world. Only in the future will we know whether this is enough…

            But, yes, we ‘hold on knowing what our life depends on’.

            Thanks for sharing, your intuitive assessment and understanding


          • SharonAlley on December 15, 2011 at 4:58 pm

            Dear Ian,

            I’m so glad you appreciated my response–longer than I intended with the poem, but Mary Oliver’s vision is too beautiful to excerpt just a few lines!

            I’m smiling at your story of your horses rejecting the inappropriate trainer–and glad you listen with your heart to their message.

            As to your question of whether what we do is “enough”, I think of another poet, Maya Angelou, who I’ve been lucky enough to hear address two local college audiences. Speaking to these young people, she stresses that they are in a position of power and responsibility, because they walk a path that others have helped to clear and define for them, and they have a responsibility to honor the contributions of those who have gone before them, by taking advantage of their opportunities and sharing their gifts to make their own contributions to the common good. She emphasizes all the while that whatever we contribute is enough, because there will always be more to do, and we are part of a webwork of connections.

            One of the most vivid images from Angelou’s talks remains in my mind and heart–especially on an overcast December day: she says there will always be cloudy days, and we must remember that by bringing our light to dark situation, we can be the rainbow in the clouds.

            Knowing that this work with horses is glowing in the hearts of people all over the world, I see lots of rainbows–intangible, transient, inspiring and radiantly beautiful.

          • Ianrowcliffe on December 15, 2011 at 8:17 pm

            No reply box below to tell you how much I appreciated your final reply, Sharon – Mark has defined ‘enough’ with six responses, I think, and so we have six colored rainbows:-)

  9. Ian Rowcliffe on December 7, 2011 at 10:46 am

    I must say that Chapter Two gave me a LOT to think about, but how to isolate the principles therein?

    Clearly, the part below is a key idea:

    “Experienced riders learn, sometimes quite unconsciously, how to avert a spook by meeting the
    affect contagion of fear with the affect contagion of relaxation, focus, elation, and/or
    amusement. Physiologically, this means that when you feel that initial shock wave coursing
    through your body, you breathe into the tension, loosening your spine, unclenching your gut,
    releasing your jaw. p 11

    This also relates to Linda’s first lesson on using emotions as information. When she was going through the body scan technique with Mark, he mentioned, recognizing Fear as a Friend…

    I had to really grapple with this, for surely giving into fear could create even more affect contagion, but Linda points out that the honest response is the right one and will calm the horse. Hence, in general,

    ‘Treating the Emotions as Information’ is a clear and powerful principle.

    Nevertheless, fear is a special case when working with people as all leaders are aware of, often manipulating it to their own ends instead of the common good. Hence, what about the principle:

    Fear is OUR friend.

    • Ian Rowcliffe on December 8, 2011 at 9:12 pm

      Nobody noticed but it was Linda who introduced the idea of ‘Fear as a Friend’, wasn’t it?

  10. CynthiaFast on November 23, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    I posted this on Meet The Herd and then it occurred that it may be an example of a guiding principle. When you perceive a need within the herd or environment that you are unwilling or unable to address as an individual, bring it to the attention of the collective without attachment to outcome.

    This symposium is starting to pop!! I am still motivated to try to get more people involved and haven’t been successful at that so far. Is anyone willing to make an e-announcement with the banner and buttons and maybe some youtube that everyone could forward to promote it if they want to? I would find that helpful. So far I can’t even get my photo on here so I don’t think I’m the one to do it.

    • Ian Rowcliffe on November 24, 2011 at 10:26 am

      Two more excellent ideas!!

  11. Ianrowcliffe on November 20, 2011 at 9:56 pm

    Next one:

    The good news is that positive feelings are contagious too. A person who truly feels peaceful in
    situations that unnerve others can have a calming effect on everyone around her. This is a key
    skill in becoming a great rider or a great leader. Chapter 2, page 8

    So the principle using Linda’s terminology might be:

    “Cultivate deep peace.”

    That said, for me, this still seems to be an elusive concept. The processes needs to be worked at intensively and frequently to be maintained. Certainly, a transformation takes place but, for most of us, it is very volatile. In some senses, it reminds me of Sherry Ackerman’s way of expressing the relation between horse and human – yoga for two – but there is something more than that – a resilient resourcefulness is incorporated in Linda’s description as it unfolds in the chapter.

  12. Ian Rowcliffe on November 18, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    Chapter 2, Page 1:

    the First Lady continually plotted with the secret service to rein in her husband’s penchant
    for good, old fashioned, mind clearing, body renewing hard work.

    The guiding principle might be:

    “Never rein in your taste for good, old fashioned, mind clearing, body renewing hard work.”

    For we know, whether cleaning out stables, grooming our wonderful horses or simply walking them, it is in just those moments that we envisage or discover leaps of the imagination that precede the realization of the highest jump or the longest leap in the story line of our lives later.

  13. Ianrowcliffe on November 15, 2011 at 11:43 pm

    “Secure, well-adjusted horses collaborate with fate. Instead of fixating on what should or
    shouldn’t happen, they sense what is happening and what wants to happen.” page 5

    Hence, a principle based on this might be: Leave room in your life for what is wanting to be (born or birthed).

    Linda exemplified this beautifully in the interview by embracing the idea of the Guiding Principles, adding that we might also add further ideas that hers evoked and be given credit for them.

    Clearly, the above principle is also implicit in the power of the ‘pause’ when training a horse or ‘play’ in work in general. In this way, creativity and, consequently, growth are incorporated. In sum, the dynamic is sufficiently flexible to bend to new circumstances and benefit from them.

    • CynthiaFast on November 17, 2011 at 5:06 pm

      Hey Ian, there’s somewhere this might fit into process over product in that you engage in the process motivated to achieve a particular outcome and along the way allow the process to take over and lead to the outcome instead of remaining fixated on the original one. I’m still fleshing out process over product so thanks for this contribution. I do also believe it warrants standing on its own.

      • Ian Rowcliffe on November 18, 2011 at 1:54 pm

        Yes, I agree: value process over product – good thinking, Cynthia

      • LindaKohanov on November 20, 2011 at 2:47 am

        I’ve observed something similar over the years with horses, explaining it in the past in this way:

        Horses value process over goal. For them the end never justifies the means.

        Fascinating discussion everyone. I’m so grateful!

        Back to writing. Today I’m working on Chapter Eight: Herd Power. Can’t wait to share it with you!

        • Ianrowcliffe on November 20, 2011 at 3:31 pm

          Yes, anyone who works with horses soon comes to that conclusion. It is little by little, everyday, come rain come shine – and you manage your remarkable books at the same time, Linda. Perhaps, because you need so much patience with horses, there is a parallel need to fill in the space it takes with words, beautiful, heartfelt words. Love the sound of Chapter Eight!

  14. JosselienJanssens on November 14, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    What a genuine privilege it is to get the gist of this book straight from the source up ahead of publication!

    From the book:

    Cathedral thinking rather than short term profit thinking in all activities: acting in the now = building the future. Putting this in practice means (amongst others) thinking of giving energy as investment rather than simply ‘spending’ it.

    Indeed goes nicely hand in hand with Cynthia’s commitment. This I would add is not only commitment to relationships but also to one’s personal goals and to (these) guiding principles as the way to steer your life towards them.

    “Facilitate Nature” rather than controlling and countering it. This includes thinking from the perspective of interdependence of people and factors in all endeavors and planning. I’ll probably come up with a better way of phrasing that in the course of this Symposium.

    And the following potential Epona-curriculum-based Guiding Principles spring to mind, that could/should be included as guiding principles:

    “Using emotion / feeling as Information and acting on the message behind it, rather than on the emotion” This is also part of Cathedral thinking: seeing things in perspective. (Always useful to remind myself of this one, and one day I’m sure I’m going to get it!)

    “Know the Yang yet stay with the Yin” – also this principle could be distilled into various guidelines.

    More to come on this from me I’m sure.

    I’d also like to share that the call was particularly topical for me personally right now. I’m working to gather up an authentic ‘herd’ of people with complementary skills to work together with since we can’t do everything on our own – I for sure need other people’s talents in order to give mine the wings they deserve.

    So Linda’s reflections working together with peers really were right on the mark since I am experiencing a lot of the issues she mentioned on this front right now.

    In this process I discovered that jealousy or rivalry could actually be classified as an emotion in itself and be listed in the Emotional Message Chart – possibly as a close relative of vulnerability and frustration. The feeling of jealousy is unlike anger, anxiety, frustration, disappointment, sadness, grief, fear.

    The message of the emotion would be something like: there is a void or blind spot in your (awareness about your) abilities, which is projected/reflected back to you by another persons’ apparent successful functioning.

    The question to ask of this feeling is: Which information do I need about myself and the other? What makes me happy? What is my unique place under the sun? What is the skill I need to manifest it? Who can help me develop it?

    The intensification is isolated thinking and distorted (“toxic”) reasoning; social paralysis (as a form of freezing, the intensification of fear) & lethargy as non violent coping strategies; also: passive-aggressive behavior, aggression.

    Look forward to all your complementary thoughts on this!

    • CynthiaFast on November 17, 2011 at 3:20 pm

      In Karla McLaren’s new book The Language of Emotions she lumps envy in with Jealousy and it includes greed. The practice is to:
      “Discern whether you’re responding to disloyalty and unfairness in others or to your own lack of self-regard and worthiness. In either case, restore your boundaries first’then listen to your intuition and honour the anger and fear inside jealousy and envy.
      …envy arises in response to the unfair distribution of resources or recognition.”

      Thanks for sharing this Joss, it makes such a difference to me when there is personal sharing going on, so thank you for offering up your honesty and vulnerability as a gift to this herd.

      • LindaKohanov on November 20, 2011 at 3:08 am

        Envy, jealousy and greed are significant topics in leadership for sure. I hadn’t thought about it much before, but now that you mention it, it seems like a real hot topic. Thank you Josselien for bringing this up so thoughtfully and honestly.

        Having been on both sides of jealousy, I sense that it often arises when someone’s as-yet-untapped potential is awakened by being in the presence of a person who has tapped it and activated it in the world. The hard part for me as an author who has experienced jealousy from others is that sometimes people think that it is easy for me to write a book and publish it, for instance, because I must be unduly talented or well-connected (Karla’s definition of envy arising in response to unfair distribution of resources or recognition), when in fact it took me six years to write the Tao of Equus, and much sacrifice of time, fun and funds to do it.

        Envy and jealousy are such a big deal actually, that come to think of it, one of the Ten Commandments addresses it. “Thou shalt not covet…”

        And I recently had the honor of working with a Navajo medicine man and his apprentice. They actually have ceremonies to guard against the negative effects of jealousy, and are very sensitive to inciting jealousy in tribe members whenever they do something new or receive recognition. In fact, fear of jealousy seems to hold them back at times. It’s a classic, cross-cultural phenomenon apparantly.

        • SharonAlley on December 3, 2011 at 4:09 am

          This is an interesting line of discussion, and I agree that jealousy, envy and greed form a cluster of emotions that are powerful and deserving of our attention. As to the cross-cultural aspect,
          in the Mediterranean cultures, Jewish, Muslim and Christian alike, the “evil eye” is cast upon someone not as a deliberate curse, but as the result of someone looking upon another with envy. As a result, people are reluctant to accept compliments or admiration, for fear of arousing jealousy or envy in another and thus, bringing the bad luck of the “evil eye”.

          The messages of jealousy and envy can help us to focus on what we want to strive for or accept into our lives–and the object of envy or jealousy can take the route of the “Rainbow Fish” from the wonderful children’s book, in which the fish with fabulous scales shares his sparkle with others, bringing joy to everyone and increasing his own pleasure through his connection to others.

          By publishing your books and teaching your techniques and insights, Linda, you are following the path of the Rainbow Fish, encouraging others to take your ideas and make them our own. The expanding network of inspired readers and Epona facilitators extend the reach of your light–and I hope your life is brightened as you regard the field of twinkling fireflies of insight as your ideas go out into the world.

        • JosselienJanssens on December 3, 2011 at 5:02 pm

          Thanks for these insights Linda and all – I clearly must get Karla MacLarens’ new book.Yes, there are several other emotions that closely tie in with it – in common examples on reasons to be jealous, also vulnerability and frustration can play a big role underneath.

          On the Navajo ceremony, it illustrates how important this emotion is within human interactions as a double edged sword. On the one hand one must not stop natural progress and achievement for fear of inciting jealousy, on the other, one must be cautious to not unduly boast one’s personal achievements and successes and make sure to acknowledge all who contributed to it.

          The positive role of the emotion seems to me that it helps us keep walking various fine social lines – to stick our heads above the mowing field just enough to be productive!

          Regarding your personal example, Linda: yes, if only writing books was that easy! Books like yours are based not just on a gruelling amount of honest hard work, they are also based on gruelling personal experience. People who are jealous of success like yours should heed another Biblical reference: “Be careful of what you wish for…” !

  15. CynthiaFast on November 14, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    Would attending to process over product be redundant to or the same as relationship over territory? Could Ian or Mark or someone clarify relationship over territory, please? I’m thinking of how hard it is for community groups to get and keep volunteers over time when the meetings are boring, the work is hard or repetitive and the interactions between members are sometimes more problematic than rewarding. In my community a majority of the most committed people dwell in the state of martyrdom and aren’t interested in making volunteering more rewarding for everyone because then it takes away from their dutiful suffering.
    There was something you said in the call about how we learn better when we’re having fun as well. I know with my horses that if I’m not having fun working with them then I’m not investing positively in the relationship and I might as well stop right there. Its not that every moment has to be fun so that leads me to when experiences aren’t fun that the quality of the dialogue doesn’t degenerate due to beings’ intolerance for discomfort.
    So I’d like to introduce a Guiding Principle related to the overall positive quality of the experience for all beings involved over the long term being related to the ability of leaders to stay out of opposition, dominance and control and direct experiences of discomfort, conflict or misunderstanding into greater awareness of self, deeper compassion for others and a felt experience of expanded connection.

  16. CynthiaFast on November 14, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    In terms of the mathematical equation. I’m really thinking about Commitment. We heard about crescendo and we heard about instant positive feedback that creates a feeling of connection. We heard about how the opposite of commitment is treating people as if they are disposable. When I was training as a youth worker, the college accepted 60 people into the program and graduated 18. This was in a 2 year college diploma program to train you to work in a field where the burnout rate was 3 years. I knew the whole time, I was being treated like the bic lighter of staff units.
    I’d like to hear more about what commitment really looks like instead of defining it by its opposite. A lot of times in a relationship we increase or decrease our level of commitment depending on what we perceive in that moment the duration of the relationship will be. Does it seem like our present partner is potentially marriage material? Are we already married? Are we going to keep this horse or sell it? Is this our son we are trying to get to clean the room or the molly maid that showed up that day. Is this horse for a specific usage and if not able to be used for that would we get rid of it?
    Then there’s the idea that we can only commit to someone else as much as we are able to commit to ourselves. If we aren’t able to commit to being vulnerable and feeling discomfort then we aren’t really able to commit to intimacy and authentic relationship.
    It seems to me the commitment has to be to the experience too, the person I am sharing that experience with and the outcome.
    And It’s also a cathedral thinking notion of building motivation over time. So then wouldn’t the equation be more like

    Motivation Increase over Time = Commitment(personal learning+relationship+task)XCrescendoX immediate positive feedback to the degree of its efficacy in terms of increasing feelings of connection for all involved

    I don’t know my keyboard well enough to make this look how I want it to.