27 July 2015

We’re Having A Heat Wave

By: Jon Katz
Having A Heat Wave

Having A Heat Wave

We're having a heat wave, hot, muggy and oppressive heat have settled over the farm like a bog, this causes some tension between my wife and I. I am sensitive to humidity and heat, I struggle with it. Maria loves it, it is never too hot for her, she would never turn the air conditioner on. I think I'm going to need it this week, even Fate got worn out after just a few minutes with the sheep. I looked up the hill, and Maria was draped over her pony, it seemed to me that she was dozing a bit, nodding off on Chloe's back. Chloe didn't look too frisky herself, the two of them were surrounded by bugs and flies, neither seemed to notice.

It's supposed to be very hot and sultry, at least for a week. Maria dragged the air conditioner into the bedroom, not I have to get her to agree to turn it on.

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Red, Walk Up. Maestro Of The Pasture

By: Jon Katz
Walking Up

Walking Up

Red is a maestro in the pasture, he is smooth and polished and instantly responsive, I think Fate will be a great working farm dog but she is much more impulsive and distractable than Red, at least for now. She is a good time girl, she loves to have fun. Red is all business, I yelled up at him to move the sheep down, walk them up to the pasture down the hill, and I take it for granted now that he understands me, because he does. He is a wonderful dog.

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Horses In Meditation

By: Jon Katz
Horses In Meditation

Horses In Meditation

Horses in meditation, Blue Star Equiculture. Help the fund drive, feed the horses.

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Rise Above Yourself: Hay For The Horses Of Blue Star

By: Jon Katz
Hay For The Horses Of Blue Star

Hay For The Horses Of Blue Star

A chance to rise above yourself, and above the angry and dark side of our world.

Help buy hay for the horses of Blue Star Equiculture.

Help keep working horses alive and in the world.

Help young people rebuild our bleeding earth.

Help men and women be healed, redeemed, reborn, loved and cared for. Blue Star is a sanctuary, for people,

for animals.

Help horses in great need be cared for and find meaningful work and homes.

Help define the future of animals in our world, help give them rights that are genuine and meaningful.

Help love people as well as animals.

Help honor the great and sacred work animals have done for people in our world.

Help keep animals in our every day lives.

Help fight hatred and cruelty, to people and animals.

Help people who love what they do, and do it with passion and community.

It costs $70,000 a year to buy hay for the big horses at Blue Star. They need at least $50,000 more, and soon.

I believe Blue Star Equiculture is important, it is the model for the future of animals in the world, for treating animals and humans both with love and dignity, for helping to mend Mother Earth, who humans have broken. It is a powerful place, it helps people and animals every day.

We need a wiser and more mystical understanding of animals than we find in the increasingly angry and hurtful conflict raging across the country over the future of animals, their welfare and their rights. The New York Carriage Horses have awakened us to the need for a better and more humane way of treating animals and the people who work for them. Blue Star is the better way.

They seek to protect the true rights of animals – to survive in our world – and also the rights of the people who own, love and care for them.

All over the country, animals who have worked with people for thousands of years – horses, ponies, elephants – are being driven from their long connection with human beings, sent to slaughter or remote farms where they will never be seen again by human beings in urban and suburban communities where most Americans live. Farmers and animal lovers are being persecuted rather than supported. At Blue Star, everyone is supported.

While politicians argue and spew hatred and division. Blue Star works  to bring harmony and compassion to the world. They do good, every minute of every day.

Blue Star is rising from a great loss, a great tragedy, the recent death of it's co-director, Paul Moshimer. They have saved too many horses and people to count.  The young have come from many places to Blue Star to help, drawn by it's great and timely mission. You can help them out by donating what you can, by helping Blue Star's hay fund drive. Thanks.

 

Posted in General
26 July 2015

Accepting Myself

By: Jon Katz
Acceptance

Acceptance

Because one believes in oneself, one doesn't try to convince others. Because one is content with oneself, one doesn't need others' approval. Because one accepts oneself, the whole world accepts him or her.”  – Lao Tzu
Acceptance has been in my mind all week.I believe acceptance is the key for me of love, of spirituality, of peace of mind, of connection. Last week, I went to New York City to spend a day and night with my daughter, newly married and busy building her new and full life. Is there still room for me, in it, I wondered, on the train to New York?

Can she accept me for the father I am, for the life I life, for the broken parts of me that she will always see?Every parent makes this journey, from the center of a child's life to the edge, at least, that ought to be the journey in my mind.

Don't we all wonder if we still matter? Emma was a metaphor of acceptance for me, we were always so close, yet had drifted apart, our lives took us in different directions, I got sick, caught a fever that lasted some years.Anger and confusion had come between us, I am the father, it was my job to sort it out, repair the damage.

To take the blame, to accept the responsibility – all of it. I imagine I wanted my child to grow up in my own image, I never thought of it that way, but what other way did I know? I wanted her to take the path I took, to love the things I loved, to cast aside the secure and orderly life for a life of change and meaning, as I came to understand it.

This is the arrogance of men, I think, perhaps of fathers, perhaps of parenting. Failure to accept others is a disease,  you can see it spreading all over the Internet, on cable news every night, in every press conference held in Washington. In millions of posts on Facebook.

I am to blame, too.  Acceptance has always plagued and evaded me, I was broken as a child, and if you are broken as a child, you will stay broken your whole life, it is very hard to accept yourself, the challenge is to pick up as many pieces as you can and make yourself as whole as possible.What did I need to do, I asked myself on the train, to get my child back, to nourish her and help her to feel strong, to give her every gentle and feathery push I could on her own train ride into life, not to block the tracks with my own ego and clouded spirit?

I knew acceptance was the key, I always knew it, even when I could not practice it. Could she accept me also, believe in me, not try and convince me to change my life, convince me of ideas I did not share? To stop resenting me for the things that make me me?  I knew Lao Tzu was correct. Acceptance is personal, individual. I seek to accept myself, finally and for good.If I could not accept  yourself, no one can accept me.

If I do not accept myself, I will always seek and need the approval of others. If I cannot accept myself, there will be a hole in my heart, it will fill with fear and resentment and regret. I do not tell my daughter what to do, how to live, what to worry about. I do not warn her about the dangers of life. I do not mind her business, or judge her decisions, invade her privacy. I speak as little of my own life as is possible. I accept being slighted, forgotten, or even disliked.

I strive to be gentle, even under provocation, to never hide behind my own dignity.We accepted one another in New York, I could feel it. I realized we both had the same thoughts, resolved to do the same thing. I entered her life, I did not come to alter it or worry about it or judge it. She accepted me (mostly) and did not wish I was someone else, living somewhere else, being someone else.  It was a very good trip.

I only ticked her off once, a record perhaps. She returned to her life, I returned to mine, yet we crossed paths in an important way.Love has it's own magic and chemistry. I learned this year that a broken heart can heal, can mend. Acceptance is the doorway to love. If I can love another for who they are, that is pure. If I can be loved for who I am, that is magic.

 

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