Introductory and Advanced – Facilitated by Linda Kohanov
Time: 9:30am to 5:30pm daily
Cost includes workshop materials, lunch, snacks and beverages each workshop day.
In this in-depth, experiential workshop, Linda Kohanov demonstrates how the skills she accessed to rehabilitate Midnight Merlin, a dangerous, formerly abused stallion, can be translated into handling challenging people and situations. Participants will practice these skills with gentler horses, gradually building their skill level to work with Merlin’s own sons, Spirit, Indigo Moon, and Orion.
Though all geldings, Merlin’s sons showed the same highly sensitive, proud, intelligent, potentially explosive combination of personality traits that their father exhibited, traits that don’t respond well to conventional dominance-submission training techniques. By using an empowered, compassionate, nonviolent approach to working with such challenging horses, Linda and her staff were able to avert many of the difficulties that would have led this younger generation down the same path of aggression, abuse and violence that Merlin experienced.
In the process, Linda discovered how the same principles can be translated to human situations where working with highly sensitive, potentially explosive children and adults calls for considerable finesse and empathy backed by the skillful use of non-predatory power.
This workshop is useful for leaders, teachers, parents, counselors, health care workers, clergy, social activists, first-responders, law enforcement personnel, and people who work or live with those who act out in aggressive or intensely fearful ways at times. The progressive skill development orientation of this workshop makes it appropriate for participants who have no previous horse experience, as well as riders and trainers who would like to learn new approaches to working with highly sensitive young horses or formerly abused older horses.
At the same time, the workshop explores how to recognize patterns of self-abuse that sometimes lead to suicide, but most often involve more subtle form of mental and emotional violence: the ways people berate themselves for failing to meet unrealistic yet superficial standards (that usually have nothing to do with their own inner callings), and, most importantly, the often unconscious ways people neglect or even refuse to forgive themselves for past mistakes, let alone learn from them. Many people also have trouble finding that delicate balance between forgiving others and holding them accountable for their own hurtful comments and actions. This adds immeasurably to the internal stress we try to either ignore or actively suppress through a variety of unhealthy behaviors and addictions. Changing these debilitating patterns demands courage, imagination, emotional and social intelligence, focus, power, and endurance, tools that will be actively exercised in The Power Behind Nonviolence workshop.
In doing extensive research for her new book The Power of the Herd, Linda realized that gaining the trust of an aggressive stallion was “an ancient power story,” one that predicted greatness. Alexander the Great, the Buddha, and George Washington were among those talented horsemen renowned for calming violent horses that no one else could touch, skills they also used to calm and focus groups of frightened or aggressive people. Through extensive research, experimentation and practical skill development over the last decade, Linda has adapted these advanced “horse whispering” principles to human contexts. This seminar is for anyone who wants to learn new ways to transform interpersonal conflict, power struggles, bullying, and other challenges at home, school, and work, as well as in political, religious, or social activism contexts.
You’ll learn how to:
- Engage compassionately with others while holding them accountable for unproductive behavior, creating constructive alternatives to interactions that normally result in shame, blame, and retaliation.
- Recognize and respond effectively to the common, though usually unconscious, power plays that people mistakenly use to meet their needs
- Employ nonverbal and conversational techniques for gaining cooperation and respect from dominant, confused, frightened or aggressive people
- Practice the steps to build “emotional heroism, that rare combination of power and compassion, courage and self-control, accountability and forgiveness that great secular and religious leaders throughout history used to effect significant social changes
- Negotiate individual and group-based blocks to success while keeping your heart and mind open, allowing you to tap the power, vision, and courage to follow your dreams.
This workshop is limited to twelve people, and can be used as both an introductory and advanced requirement for those interested in applying for the Eponaquest Apprenticeship program.
For more information about this program contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cancellation Policy: Cancellation up to 30 days prior to the event start date results in a credit of one-half the workshop tuition. There is no tuition credit for a cancellation 30 days or less before the event start date.