If you have not read the Part 1, Part 2, Part 3-A, do not bother to read this.
|I am sure that you have heard of the concept that horses (animals) learn by the so-called "association". In most cases these publications are presented by people that have very little experience in working with animals. Most of the time it is presented by folks that already have some kind of theoretical education through which they look at the animals and the natural world. Therefore their so-called "scientific research" is founded not on reality but on their understanding of the theories that they've previously studied. In any case, I will present a few simple examples so folks could not only understand it but mainly become aware of it when with horses.|
As mentioned in the previous segments, horses, like us, have the five sensory perceptions of the physical environment, or as we often call it, the "five senses". As often in a genuine science, it is best to present these facts in some kind of artistic visual presentation, hence I often say that truth has to be seen. It would be best to imagine the "instinctive tree" in some kind of a dome, where the dome is these five senses, the five types of awareness.
Through these senses the horse becomes aware of the environmental realities which the animal then can feel. These senses thus become part of the associative instinctive learning process. In short, the horse not only becomes aware of the realities through these senses, but also associates the reality with these senses. This is what I would call the association A, and then there is the so-called B association.
The A associations are often overlapping, and so do the B associations, meaning that the horses associate a certain reality not only with one sense like the smell, but often and in most cases with smell, sound, sight and so forth and such. The B association is also often overlapped, which I will explain as I go. It is best to imagine these sequences, or combinations, of associations as some kind of a chain, each association being one link in this chain that is then connected by another chain link to the instinctive tree at the particular "place/branch" according to its significance in relevance to the self-preservation instinct (fear/pain), or the proliferation or the need to eat/consume instincts.
The very important part in understanding the associative learning process is to be aware that horses lack the "existential awareness", hence they have no clue of their state of existence, or better said they have no clue that they are. Because of this lack of awareness they simply have no clue that their body is them. In short the animal simply has no clue that it is looking at itself when looking into the mirror. On the same note the horse has no clue that its body is its body. However, from the time it is born its body delivers feeling to the animal (awareness of pain) and the horse responds. In reality the animal associates its body with pain/feeling rather than with it self, which is what the mirror proves, besides other factors.
This lack of "existential awareness" can be seen
just about in all the responses of the horse to the environment. For example, as
many of you have experienced, horses often hit their bodies, mainly hips, when
entering the stall. If someone was fortunate to see this in more horses and
fairy often, he realizes that individual horses respond differently to almost
The association with the sides of the body can be
seen clearly in the following example. The yearlings in the Tb industry are
often first time mounted in the stalls. The youngster is first accustomed to the
saddle and a bridle, and then in the stall the rider usually first
"bellies" the horse, which is almost always done from the left side, and best
done while the horse is moving in a tight circle in that stall.
In short, how and with what horses associate the new things and activities in the environment decides how they will respond to given situations.
The combination of the A and B associations can be
clearly demonstrated in the following example. I was shoeing a mare for few
years, and she was fairly good and behaved fairly well during the process. She
was not exactly a brave horse, though she acted often tough.
Now this horse associated this experience through and with the sound, and with the part of the body, the belly and the hind leg, and of course with the shoeing process. Since the animal associated this only with the belly and the hind leg, it had no problem with me when I was cutting the nails by the front legs, only with the hind legs. Since the animal did not associate the incident with the side, it was equally apprehensive when working on the opposite hind leg as well.
mare associated this incident through and with the sound, hence the next time I
came to shoe the mare, her senses were heightened (since she also associated
the incident with shoeing) when cutting the nails in the front legs, but
that was all. Since nothing happened by shoeing the front legs she accepted that
as harmless in just few shoeing, though always displaying
a little uneasiness.
The mare more likely also associated the incident
with me, and so the next farrier might not have experienced the same problem, or
at least not at the level. (Horses often associate experiences with the human
gender, age, the clothing, smell and such and so forth). And so, how and with what a horse associates the newly acquired
instincts will determine the animal's responses in similar situations.
The "how and with what" associative learning process has simply infinite possibilities and variables, hence no horse is the same. Now when all combined, the individual nature, temperament and "character" (predisposition), the individual self-awareness level and threshold of "pain" (sensitivity), as well as the individual "learning" capability (intelligence) of the horse, we end up with infinite varieties of individualities in horses.
Henceforth, for this reason alone, anyone that presents some kind of "way", or a method, of training a horse (like often the "natural horsemanship" fools do) is for most part either idiot or person exploiting fools, while presenting a genuine bullshit. People commonly get sucked in by these folks that usually use words like "gentle", "kind", "savvy" or "natural" horsemanship", or "think like a horse" and such and so forth, hardly ever used by horsemen but very appealing to the female public.
Therefore it is women that are the first in line to get sucked in by these deceivers and manipulators, who often present some bagful of tricks to impress these silly women, and that not without expected effects. (For the same reasons men do not send women to buy a car.)
Please don't do anything like this even with well trained and
(Many women that embrace this "natural horsemanship" often say that it worked for them, and that before they took the lessons or learned that way, they could not get done anything with horses, but now the horses are listening to them and they get more done. Of course they have no clue what it is to be able to relate to a horse (since that is all they know), because of if they would, they would have no need for the so-called "cues". People like this are like kids that entered a first grade and never graduate, but say they know more than before they entered the first grade. There is simply no talking to such folks, as their comprehension of themselves, as well as any reality, is almost non-existent. There is simply no way to educate a fool or idiot that thinks he knows when he or she does not.)
And so, for the above given reasons you may now understand that no
one can teach you how to ride a horse, no one can teach you how to handle, train
or deal with a horse or horses. In short, no one but the horse can teach you
horsemanship, because it is the horse that not only teaches you how to deal with
"him", but it also provides you with all the answers to your questions in
relevance to the same. And so it is the horse that makes the horseman since the man adjusts his ways
to the horse in order to have the horse provide some particular service, or
behave in a certain way.
The biggest contributor to animal abuse, especially in horses, is the human ignorance, pride and stupidity, and the worst of all people are those folks that think they know what they are doing. People often ask me, "Do you know what you are doing?" In all cases my response is simple, "NO!" It suffices to say that this worries a lot of people, but not those that know me, and know enough about horses to understand my reply.
In the past I have often helped some folks in
training and riding horses. Often before getting on the horse, after observing
the person riding it and having some issues with the animal, the person asked,
"What are you going to do"? My response was simple, "I do not know", and then I
go, get on the horse and it simply comes to me from the horse what to do.
Once I've said to a woman, "You are the mirror of your horse's life", and she almost went to tears, not having even the slightest clue about what I've meant. I have also said to a woman, "Your horse is the mirror of you", which also went by not understood, but it brought no tears.
One of the greatest impediments in the learning
process in humans in the "modern times" is the so-called "intellectual
inferiority complex" (the foundation stone of the "politically correct"
concept), which is of the feminine origin and infects kids already in very young
age in the shit-places we call "schools".
Today, most so-called modern women are openly more profane and shameless then men ever been in the history of human kind. We can tolerate someone calling another person a "motherfucker", but we cannot call anyone stupid. Most women today have no problems with being called "bitch", but most tend to lose their faculties over being called stupid. This is the result of a reason being subjected to emotions/feelings, hence we live in feminine society with men being totally pussy-whipped, or more politely said, totally effeminized, because they subjects themselves to such nonsense as that. There is no time in history that shows men being this insipid, effeminized and weak, as in this time and age. Give a grown man job/money, food, beer, TV and pussy and he is set for life, until boredom and misery sets in, hence one needs not wonder why he needs the beer.
In conclusion the ability to feel pain is what makes one feel life. The pain itself is the core energy of life, but if improperly managed, whether through too much pleasure or suffering, it will deflate the will to live in all existentially aware life. This is also why animals endure more pain and suffering, because they live, or better said, are driven to live purely from the instinct of self-preservation and have no clue that they could opt to die, hence people commit suicide and animals don't.
Written by Ludvik K Stanek a.k.a Lee Stanek (2010)