In my work with horse rescues I see many cases of severe abuse and neglect. Stories that leave one wondering how anyone could think it right to treat any living thing the way they do. This week I had the opportunity to work with a beautiful, resilient mare named Valora. Her story is now a well publicized case in Phoenix, Arizona. The short version is that her original owner, who was also neglectful in her physical, mental and emotional care, was losing her home, couldn’t care for her, and gave her to a man. The man’s intent was to load her in his trailer, shoot her, and take her to a meat rendering plant for money. The mare refused to load and the man proceeded to beat her. Neighbors saw what was happening and called the police. They eventually contacted Luv Shack Horse Rescue who eagerly took her in. Unfortunately Valora took the brunt of his beating and will lose her right eye, has a severe concussion, several skull fractures, many bruises, and 20+ stitches in various places on her body. She will likely need surgery to repair some of her injuries.
Joey Ogburn, Luv Shack’s founder, asked me to come and work with her. The Reiki part of this story is beautiful. Valora is nothing short of amazing. She readily settled in to a Reiki treatment, actively absorbing the healing energy into her bruised and broken body. Several times she placed specific body areas in or near my hands and gave me a gentle nudge with her nose when she was ready for me to move to another area. Time stood still as her session ebbed and flowed, even while her physical needs were being attended to by those caring for her. It was clear Valora knew she still had something to accomplish in this life.
I realized after working with her and reading the comments on Luv Shack’s Facebook page and the forums on the local TV stations covering the story, not only does she have much healing to do….but so do we. Much anger, disbelief, sadness, bewilderment, fear, and harsh judgment has been expressed in these outlets as well as personal conversations people have had as they hear of Valora’s story. I too am as guilty as some.
Feeling and expressing emotions I believe to be part of the healing process. But how many of us get stuck there? How does our involvement in this affect the healing of Valora? How are the ripple effects, both positive and negative, affecting all living things on this planet?
It’s then that I remember the Reiki Precepts. “Just for today…Do not anger, Do not worry, Be humble, Be honest in your work, Be compassionate to yourself and others.” Because I believe in these principles and keep them with me daily they have become an anchor to love and peace when outside influences are pulling me in other directions.
Yes, I’ve been angry, thought bad things about the individuals who caused this animal harm, shed tears of sadness, and had moments where the inhumanity of it all has swept over me. Through all this I am grateful for the compass and point of reference the Reiki Precepts are in my life. They help me refocus, see how my actions effect the much larger picture, and work through any personal issues the situation brings up within me. I understand that may sound sanctimonious, but trust me, it isn’t. I’ve found the past few days to be more challenging than not when it’s come to working through my own personal experience with this situation.
And I’ve found it very healing and helpful to send Reiki to the entire situation. Allowing healing to happen for the highest and best good of all involved.
Thank you Valora for being the beautiful soul you are. For being so valiant as well as open to the new love that has come your way. While none of us would ever wish harm upon you or any other being, thank you for helping us learn and heal with you.