This practice is both New Age and occult because it purports to enable people to achieve personal growth and enlightenment through the wisdom of horses. Besides having the very typical New Age focus on the Self, it also embraces an animistic belief system that is not compatible with Christianity.
According to the EquiSpirit Horse Farm, interaction with horses is used for everything from tuning into your authentic self to opening the pathway to healing.
“Horses read intent and respond to positive and negative changes in body language and behavior,” the site explains. “They intuitively sense the emotions and energies around them in that moment and in turn mirror and reflect those emotions and energies. When interacting with us they respond to what we are actually communicating. Most often they understand our intentions before we do and give honest and instant feedback. The horse becomes the bio-feedback mechanism in which we see ourselves and how we can measure our energy, effectiveness and non-verbal communication.”
A typical experience involves personal interaction with a horse, which is supervised by a trained facilitator, along with other New Age practices such as guided meditations, Reiki, aromatherapy, and massage.
From what I could find, this practice is typically offered by persons whose worldview is steeped in the New Age, such as this equine facilitator reveals in a blog about her work: “Today is the New Moon. My new & full moon rituals always consist of writing down my intentions or things I wish to release and burn it in the firepit. Sending all those hopes and dreams into the ether letting the Universe know that I'm conscious and mindful in my intention.”
Occult-based animistic beliefs also abound in these practices.
“Many ancient cultures believe horses are the gateway to our higher self. Through our connection with horses we are brought closer to the healing energies of nature,” this site explains. “Horses can help us enter the spiritual realms of horse wisdom and bridge our communication with the animal kingdom. Our kinship with the animal world offers an abundance of information and messages for humans. Animal wisdom emits these fundamental truths if we are willing to learn and understand their languages.”
This is classic animism, which is a belief that animals, plants, rivers, mountains, and other entities in nature contain an inner spirit. In practices such as shamanism, these spirits are called upon in order to use their powers to effect healing or enlightenment.
Equine Guided Enlightenment is simply another New Age gimmick that appeals to spiritual “seekers” who don’t yet realize that the nagging hunger in their soul is for for their Creator, not for His creatures. We can only pray that they will make this life-changing discovery as soon as possible and leave the dear horses to their grazing.