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Tracy Courtney

The Missing Link

Many names, ideas & practices have been created to try to define the same phenomenon such as, searching for god, the soul, the higher-self, looking within, etc. For simplicity & to avoid temptations to place these words into subjective boxed comparative meanings, we will use the word “nature” as a single reference point to these varied ideas. For centuries, we have created elaborate rituals & beliefs that have been passed along to humans from other humans, in the search for these elusive understandings & meanings. We have spent years & lifetimes secluded in caves, left our loved ones & homes in search of something more, spent countless hours sitting quietly meditating, learning specific hand gestures, pretzel-like physical routines, visiting & living close to nature, in the hopes of finding that seemingly elusive gold nugget. We have often been conditioned to always search for something more outside of ourselves without consideration of whether this may be the direct source of our strife. 

We are attracted to these things because of how they make us feel. We do these things because they make us feel good. They are a much needed rest from other parts of our lives that sometimes make us feel tense, tired & less at peace with our existence. Having these outlets offers a glimpse of peace, serenity & a much needed chance to unwind. But what if these outlets have the potential to lead to more unbalance than balance? When we believe we must designate a time & place to feel at peace, can we be unintentionally creating the opposite effect of what we're trying to achieve?

When we feel stressed, anxious or worried, our mind will naturally gravitate towards thoughts & feelings of wanting to avoid & escape to "that other place" of serenity. What if it were possible to find this quiet & relaxing space in a much simpler, while active way? What if, instead of only catching glimpses here & there, we could tap directly into this source & bring the peace into everything we do? There's no need to stop doing anything that makes us feel good already, but what if we could find those elusive answers with our very own personal guidance systems? Our own personal, on-call therapists, who are always ready & willing to listen & will never criticize or negate our feelings? To have a tangible & physical source, that can help us find all the answers we've been searching for, right in front of us?

We have created many names to try to dissect & understand different aspects of our existence & our behaviour. I will use some common words to try to convey a new idea. Many are familiar with the words duality or opposites attract. What if our pets are the opposites we are attracted to? What if our mind's or as some prefer to call it, the ego, were the negative end of the magnet & nature were the positive end? What if, in the search for the opposite of the mind/ego, it really wasn't something mystical & elusive, but has been right here in front of us the whole time? What if the ideas we have developed & cling to have been a self-imposed veil that has obscured what's right in front of us? What if it's really not about one or the other, but finding a harmonious balance between both, a middle way?

We can easily substantiate why we choose to go into nature & spend time with animals. During these interactions we feel calmer, we can relax & how many of us have realized it has to do with the mind/ego/emotions slowing down & becoming more quiet? Science has proven that being around animals reduces our thought waves, blood pressure & many other benefits. Could this be the answers we've been searching for, for centuries? Can these glimpses be an indication from nature that we can feel like this all of the time if we choose to listen & learn something new instead of following the human crowd? Can this be a sign from nature that we are equally a part of nature, that this has always been available to us, but we have selectively separated ourselves from nature & come to believe it's something separate from us?

As with the methods we have clung to for centuries with animals, we must begin to ask ourselves if the complex rituals & endless intellectual processes we've developed have given us the answers we've been searching for? Have spending time sitting & listening to those we place upon pedestals given all of us the answers we've been searching for, or just a select few? Could our intellectual conclusions & beliefs in the words of other humans be responsible for creating our own barriers? Is it time to turn the page & move on to something new, already here & available to everyone, regardless of their personal belief systems? Not something that involves more intellectual processes & complex rituals, but less of them? What if it involved absolutely no rituals or routines? Is this a possibility in our currently deeply conditioned belief systems?

Progress is slow but it must continue to be explored if beneficial changes are to occur eventually. One hundred years ago we had no concepts, let alone beliefs that animals could help us in so many ways, other than personal farm machinery and transportation. We have since adopted the understandings & beliefs that inevitably follow, through mass acceptance, that animals not only have a direct effect on our mental, emotional & physical structures, but how effective they are at providing healing on all levels, some we aren't even aware of yet.

We now commonly use animals as therapists, but who provides the therapy for the animals? If everything is energy, including our thoughts & emotions, have we ever stopped to consider where this buildup of accumulated energy being expressed & released by humans might go in relation to the animals? Is it easier for us to think that it just dissipates into the air or into the atmosphere & disappears? We know beyond a doubt that energy can't be destroyed, it just morphs into something else. Do we ever wonder what that something else might be in relation to our therapy pets? 

Over the past 10 years of dissecting, developing & teaching Emotional Balancing, combined with 30 more years of teaching traditionally accepted methods, I have learned some intrinsically valuable lessons about the habitual thought processes of humans & animals. Having recognized that human conditioning is responsible for all of the problems experienced with our pets, I have tried to address the root cause of the problems. Although everyone who contacts me will always say they're willing to do whatever it takes to help their pets, when the human realizes that they must begin to look at their own thoughts & habits, they immediately go to someone else who will force their pet to comply or abandon their pet, in 98% pf cases.

Most people are not willing to take responsibility for their own part in the creation of or the solutions to the problems because the conditioning is too deep & comfortable, so we elect to blame everyone but ourselves. The fault must always lay elsewhere. Most people are only interested in quick fixes & creating time limits where the animals & myself must perform like circus bears in order to help the pet as much as I can in the minimal time allotment. Although I am here to help the human as much as they will allow, my priority is for the pet, to provide therapy & full being balance, which will inevitably continue to help the human, more than they realize, after I leave. In my experience, the pets have had to accumulate so much mental, emotional & physical baggage & trauma from humans that they cannot be fully present to offer the necessary guidance in the teaching role for the humans. After their the animals become balanced, they are able to fully assume the teaching role & guide the human who is willing to listen into balance.

Everyone has either participated in or has known someone who has participated in some type of counselling sessions. Can anyone say that all of their problems were solved in a single one hour session? If not, then how long did the person continue to attend these sessions & why? I suspect we choose to limit our pet's therapy sessions to a single hour because that's what we're accustomed to in our own lives but what if we could balance most if not all of the problems in a single extended session instead of multiple repeat visits? Learning something brand new takes time & practice & we are either willing to commit or we are not.

There are very few people who are genuinely interested in looking at themselves & the role they play in the problems they experience. For those few who I have had the privilege of guiding into a deeper connection with the true nature of their pets & themselve, I will continue to look forward to our time together. For this reason, I will no longer offer services where I do the work for you with your pet, other than the demos. I will no longer subject myself or the animals to quick fixes & time limits that force us to perform like circus bears. My focus moving forward will now revolve around those who are more interested in their pet's wellbeing, than their own personal timelines & unrealistic goals.

My main focus has shifted to giving the animals what they need & giving them the time to express their emotions as they feel necessary, just as I would expect from any decent human being. To bring their traumas & fears forward at a steady but caring pace, instead of a forced pace, to enable them to release them permanently & also feel as good about their own therapy sessions as humans do. I will also place priority on the humans who are ready for positive & progressive change & are willing to meet their pet in the middle. Learning how to listen effectively & have discussions to find a mutual connection, communication & understanding, without the use of force, control, learned helplessness or gadgets. For those few who are interested in something more, I'm excited to announce that there are two brand new (human) prototypes currently in production, that combined with the human exercises, will offer a tremendous advantage to meeting our pets in the middle.

What is part of nature? Everything around us, including our pets & ourselves are all an equal part of nature, & therefore we are all connected at some level. When we are with what we have dissected nature into, this often refers to a secluded area full of plants, trees, mountains & streams. We can admire the beauty of these things & feel more relaxed with the quiet that surrounds us when we go elsewhere, or we can choose to bring that beauty into everything we do on a daily basis, through the help of our pets. Our pets are our direct link to what we've been searching for & can provide all the answers we need if we choose to allow them to teach us what we have forgotten. It's time to change the rules & return to simplicity.