September 28, 2013 08:56
Watching Horses is part of being Human
To say mankind evolved watching horses is simply reporting evidence. Incredibly the sight of horses is older to humanity than the use of fire or tools. Horse-watching predates walking upright.
According to science, the horse developed into its current form much earlier than humans did. The oldest known evidence of equus—the genus of all existing equines—comes from Idaho, USA, and is dated to about 3.5 million years old.
Photo credit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:HyracotheriumVasacciensisLikeHorse.JPG
In comparison, humans are new kids on the block. Recognizable equus herds were present as early human-prototypes evolved ... human ancestors like australopithecus, who lived about 4 to 2 million years ago, were still losing their body hair and learning to walk upright at a time when fully-formed horses were already galloping across the plains.
Evidence reveals that the sight/sound/smell of horses is instilled in the most primal part of us, yet what this means to the realm of consciousness is less clear. We do know the earliest discovered prehistoric artwork concerns horses. Paleolithic caves are filled with equine figures and carvings that give testament to the awareness and importance of the animal to primitive man.
Science has only recently verified what horsemen have long claimed: horses are integral to human experience. However science does not answer what this means to present-day humanity. Charts cannot plot the horse’s deep link to our psyche. Does it ground us, does it balance us psychically to watch horses in action? The answer may be outside our empirical senses; it may be found quite simply in our hearts.
If today’s horse-lovers claim horses are important to the human spirit, it may be unwise to scoff. We should remember there are things poets knew ... before scientists proved it.
(c) John Royce