LEAP provide their trainees with a comprehensive model that can be used in a number of different ways and with a variety of client groups.
Symbolic Language can be an excellent way of engaging with people who have been through trauma, are non-verbal and/or find it difficult to talk about certain things. Symbols can be a perfect way to communicate things that cannot be be captured with words.
The symbols in this work are inspired by Native Americans and Runes, and clients are also encouraged to create their own symbols - it is up to the client if they want to discuss what the symbols they use mean or would prefer to keep that between them and the horse.
Today, on day 2 of the last section of our training, we went over two activities that can utilise symbolic language - horse painting and sending away feelings.
Horse painting involves using non-toxic materials to create paint, this is used to paint symbols on a horse, either individually or as a group, as part of a ceremony that honours the horse's wisdom and the client's power to communicate in a different way.
Sending feelings away involves marking symbols on a cloth, perhaps things that are difficult for you to carry, then asking a horse to help you carry those things by tying them on their mane.
These actvities sound very simple, and are very symbol, and it can sometimes be the most simple things that are the most powerful.