Expression of the Divine, Part 5: Eye of the Shaman

ink drawing by Erick Moreau

“… the soul of the mountain has sent you a gift. The gift lives beneath the avalanche of blockage…”  Windhorse Woman by Lynn Andrews

During the time that Tal was showing no improvement, I lost interest in writing again. The days dragged on with no changes, not in my writing and posting nor in Tal’s condition. The blockage remained. I was wading through guilt, had trouble looking at Tal in the eye, wanted to ignore him so I wouldn’t feel so badly. “How could you do this to him?” I screamed at myself and felt the whole world of condemnation jump on the bandwagon. “You have the solution and don’t act on it day after day! What is wrong with you?! Just post a damn story! How hard can that be?!” But I was “tharn” again, that Watership Down word that I’d learned from Joe Camp in The Soul of the Horse, frozen in place. Tal stayed the same, not too good and not too bad. In spirit, his paddock seemed dismal and gray like an overcast day that doesn’t rain and doesn’t shine.


I had a realization one evening as I stood in my tiny kitchen eating a leftover biscuit my husband had made for dinner that night. It was one of his better batches. I thought they were perfect, but he said, “almost.” So as I was eating an “almost” perfect biscuit, I had a revelation about the horses.

From the beginning of my mystical path with them, I’ve seen their spiritual gifts. What is unfolding now is that I’m getting to know their personalities as spiritual beings. With Apolinaire, it happened a couple of years ago. When I began to recognize his importance in my life as a representative of the divine, I told him I was on to him, that I knew who he was. He stopped his rhythmic munching of hay, lifted his head, and with a twinkle in his eye, gave me an affirming nudge on my arm.

Spiritual Being

As for Tal, I’ve had a difficult time seeing him as a spiritual being except for occasional moments.  I asked to have my eyes opened. My answer started coming in words that were inspired. I heard myself softly chanting in the quiet places of my heart, “You are giving me wings to take flight, giving me wings to take flight.” Something was trying to open in me. After sharing this with a friend, she said, “Tal wants to release you to take flight. It’s not about his physical condition. That is a mere distraction to take your focus away. It is beyond that. He will experience release when you get released.” I resonated with what she said. This was not a simple equation of “my writing equals Tal’s healing.” There was certainly a correlation but for reasons much more far reaching in ways that I couldn’t contain or restrain with my mind. I could feel it more than verbalize it. My writing issue was only a symptom.

When we finished our conversation, I stepped outside my cabin into the silence of the nighttime sky. Suddenly, Tal’s presence, thick and big, pressed in around me in fullness with no boundaries, filling the sky above in its limitless essence. It surrounded me, absorbing me into the unending expansiveness of his being. His spirit felt as though it had been released from the constraints of his physical body. My own constraints dissipated as my own boundaries were stretched thin. I stood on the dirt pathway leading to and from my cabin, lingering, soaking, and dwelling in the feeling of those moments. I knew in my heart that this was more than just an ethereal experience. Something was starting to change.

He connected with me all the next day as I mucked manure. I had been reading Kindred Spirits, by Allen Schoen. Insights and thoughts washed over me throughout the day as I was shown the parallels in my own life. Just as Schoen had done many years ago, I was stepping out of the crowd away from traditional convention, a step at a time. I began to understand some of my fears: self image, and lack of trust. A new confidence started to grow.

The Eye

When I went for my periodic check-in with Tal, his dark brown eye drew me in. When I looked into his eye as if through a keyhole, in a quick glimpse, I saw deeply into another world where Tal was a well-seasoned sage, a highly respected spiritual master of some ancestral world perhaps, an intermediary between the physical and spiritual realms. What I literally saw, I can’t explain. It was vague, but warm. It was transformational. I knew I had experienced a world beyond time. I had seen and felt Tal’s essence. For that moment I had been in direct contact with his spiritual being. It was quick, but something had been inscribed on my heart. After that experience my eyes began to see differently. It was then that I truly began receiving Tal’s spiritual influence.

I went to my computer where this series about Tal had it’s beginnings. There Part 1 sat dormant, fixed coldly in cement. I wasn’t ready to chip away at the prison walls just yet. Instead I looked half-heartedly through my photos. For the first time, my new eyes were drawn to the heart in the mud that the horses had left for me on Valentine’s Day. An awareness burst suddenly forth, like a curtain pulled open on a sunny day; I knew it was to be my new lead-in post! With a deep breath of release, I became unstuck instantly! It was comfortable, easy, fun, and fast!  And, it had been there all along. With the gracefulness of spirit, I was given a clever sidestep around the story that had held me prisoner far too long. I posted Special Moment instead, and the shackles dropped to the ground beside me.

When I went to the barn, I hoped to see Tal dancing around on all fours. Didn’t happen. I couldn’t see any change, but now wedged in my heart was a new truth. Everything had changed. I didn’t see it, but I knew it. I heard Tal’s voice saying to me, “The very  grasses you’ve taken away from me, are the very grasses that will bring my healing. ” It was time to open the gates, and let Tal go out to the pasture!

Do you know how crazy that was?! This was the opposite of convention, and seemingly risky! But all of the rules I’d been living by were scattered haphazardly on the ground around me nothing more than rotting fence posts. They had done us no good. What fences were left were coming down. I walked to the gate with fearful quivering. My eyes had seen those damaged hooves when the farrier came to trim. I knew the concerns, but my heart was listening and the Shaman’s eye had shown me a new way of being. It was time to step away from the crowd of conventional wisdom, from the voices of skepticism, judgments, fear, and of condemnation. None of them had worked! I had no where else to turn.

I opened the gate. Tal walked through. The herd joined him.

…there was one more thing I needed to do.

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