A little while ago we said we would look into the myth of the white horse and its manifestation in our group work, I guess it is one of our personal Myths.
As we tried to explain before here, there is a group formation model, that consists of a few men and women, a group that acts as one greater being. We call it the group body, or sometimes the group mind.
Our own story in relation to group work started in the summer of “96 in a festival that took place in the mountains of Portugal, meant to be a month long affair, but ended up lasting more than three months.
Not only did we meet group consciousness work, on that mountain range there lived a few herds of semi-wild horses; the gathering site itself had a herd of brown mares with one splendid white stallion.
The White horse in the mountains of Portugal
I remember we used to have our morning service circle in the medicine area and the white stallion would come and stand a few metres away looking at us. I guess from the beginning, group work was imprinted with a pure white stallion (for us anyways), as you will see that white horse became a kind of story-teller of our particular group blueprint.
7 years later, some of the people who met in those mountains in Portugal were now living in a meadow in the Pyrenees in France. The group was facing a new cycle, as a few months earlier we all went back to the same site in Portugal to recall what is was all about, to re-align our intent.
But in the end, of that re-alignment the group kind of collapsed. It became clear that group work needs a stronger basis and that it could not be family orientated, because of inherited flaws and inter-dependencies.
So here we were in France a few months later (some of the survivors). One morning I went to visit the Scholar, (one of the men). Whilst sitting in his van, speaking about one of the women (as men do), two horses wandered by; one was brown and had a bridle, the other white with brown patches seemed somewhat wild.
The Scholar said, “Let’s go and catch them and ride together”. I said, “There’s no way we will manage to catch up to these two”, so he opened his truck door, picked up a carrot from his food box, and off he goes by himself. Twenty minutes later he comes back riding the brown (bridled) horse, with the white one walking alongside. I could not believe that he managed to get them, though he was one carrot short.
But when he came to where I was standing he did not stop. I walk on with him and the horses; the brown one ignores me but the white one comes straight at me and then it starts following me, instead of walking with the other horse.
The Scholar goes over to one of the girls, she steps out of her caravan (sounds gypsy?), he jumps off and she jumps on, she then asks me for a lead, rides the horse for a while, until the horse gets jumpy and rears; trying to kick the one that has been following me all along, the white one with the mad eyes.
Somehow we felt like there was more than just a usual interaction here, in retrospect it turned out to be a true hunch, it was a map.
Our story turned out to be played out by those horses, we called it the Horse Map, because it turned out to be a map of sorts for telling future events.
The Scholar found another path, one that he could harness (symbolised by the brown horse) and the woman too took that path for a while, then reared up (had a little drama) and became a Buddhist nun a path not so un-similar to his initial, so you could say the horses foretold that those two are going another way and that we are going another, symbolised by the white horse.
The horses represented two modes – the Dreaming and Stalking, guess which was the white one?
The stalking horse
It does not end here, another 3 years went by and we found ourselves gathering a new group.
Whilst in Italy, again in trucks, we found this amazing valley, it too had a herd of wild horses which was led by a white stallion. We thought that our dreams had come true, then one morning I was speaking to one of the girls and the white stallion came and stood on the ledge right above us looking into the truck, I felt like the story has come for me, this must be our place (we were looking).
A few days later, we found an old mill we thought we should buy, to turn into a centre for group work.
Next night another one of the girls had a dream, where she met the heart of the world and lost it. In the dream she was literally overlooking the Mill (remember the Mill that grinds the ages?) and speaking to a being who was the Heart of the World (but looked like a door) but then it left her going east towards some mountains.
The next morning she was telling me that dream, we were standing outside, at the exact same spot where the dream took place – overlooking the Mill. Just then, out of nowhere a 4×4 truck comes up towing the lead stallion on a rope, the very same free stallion that had been roaming that valley for some 7 years. It was an omen, the leader has been caught, the group lost its freedom. Funny thing was that it appeared just as she told me the bit about losing the Heart of the World.
Then as it passed us the truck stopped, the stallion was rolling on the road kicking, the rope was strangling it, then as if in a dream, a car stopped and an Italian guy (it is Italy after all) jumps out, wearing a Horse medallion on his neck, and takes the rope off the horse’s neck and ties it as a bridle, the truck drives east down the road (same direction as the heart of the world went).
The white horse caught
This was how the white horse was caught, we felt like our story itself was caught.
The story does not end here, but as this post has become epic, so it will have to be followed by another.