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May 3, 2015: An Important Revelation: The Importance of Clear Intent

Last night I resumed reading Centered Riding II – I’ve been making an outline of the book, so that I can more readily find the information that I need, when I need it. At the very least, the outline slows me down and gets me to thinking about centered riding particulars. At the very most, it (already, just four chapters into this) is resulting in life-changing insights.

This morning, after internalizing some of what I read, I had a huge revelation – one that’s quite illuminating. This goes hand-in-hand the other day, with my realization that I can allow my insides to be filled with light or dark. This was one of my biggest revelations, ever. It related to last Friday’s lesson.

Midway through the lesson, I began grousing because Raudi and I weren’t getting enough attention. Beth had told us to spend time going over the outside poles and cavalettis, this while the other riders did the

inside grid. My response to this was to throw up my hands and leave the ring early. I subsequently realized that rather than grouse, I should have continued to work on my own, and put centered riding theory to practice. I instead bypassed what otherwise would have been a wonderful opportunity. I had, at that very moment, ample arena space, which is something that I don’t have at home. And there were also numerous distractions, the most obvious being the other horses. I refused to inwardly acknowledge this, and instead got all bent out of shape. The only excuse I might have is that I was hungry – my mouth had remained numb all day after having dental work done. So yes, my judgement might have been clouded.

This is my revelation. One of the most important aspects, if not the most important aspect of centered riding is clear intent. Clear intent centers around making a clear mental decision. Organizing the body and mind enables one to communicate clearly with their horse, one’s body, and others. Clear intent involves the use of ideokinesis (your mind affects your body). If you are using ideokinesis, you abandon the use of conscious muscular effort. Clear intent is essential for control and clarity in riding and handling horses.

In this instance, my intent became muddied and I did as Alexander noted is common – I end gained; that is, I shifted my focus to what I foresaw would be the end result, my going over the jumps in the center area.

I should, in this particular instance, have taken a moment and reassessed, reorganized, and regrouped; these particular entities being an integral part of clear intent. Had I done this, I would have put centered riding theory to practice. For instance, I might have reviewed the four basics and grounding, and then brought some images to mind, one of these being, see myself as being like a nearby spruce tree, that is tall and proud, with my roots extending into the ground. The result would have been that Raudi and I would have done quite well, when in time, Beth got back to us. And she would have.

Most amazingly (and this, in addition to my revelation) is that throughout, Raudi behaved in an exemplary fashion. She did everything I asked her to do (aside from initially bulking when asked to go over the jump) – and remained extremely relaxed, even when I was less so.

I’m glad that I had this revelation because it enabled me to put what happened into perspective. The grow metaphor – it is coming into play as I write this. Yes, clear intent goes hand-in-hand with mental and physical growth.

Next: 117. 5/4/15: Spring, for Real

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