SAGITTARIUS
RISING, LLC

Master's Thesis

Equine Assisted Therapy:
Striving for Balance In a New Form of Psychotherapy

By Lisa S. Baugh

The complete 128 page masterís thesis is available for purchase. Comes wire bound with black front and back vinyl cover. $46 includes shipping and handling.

Contact by phone or email for details.
(561) 791-8939    lsbaugh1@yahoo.com



"An important piece of work for anyone already in the field of Equine Assisted Therapy or interested in the field of Equine Assisted Therapy. It gives a balanced history of this evolving discipline and the struggles that any emerging field inevitably encounters. Also discussed is the potential impact of the unconscious dynamics of practitioners making us aware of how this can inform our understanding of the field and our influence on the efficacy of the work. A wonderful introduction to the Equine Assisted Therapy world with the necessary depth to help make those interested and/or involved look more mindfully towards its future."

DR. JOSEPH LANCIA
Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry
University of Rochester Medical Center


Abstract

Equine assisted therapy is an experiential form of psychotherapy in which clients interact with horses. Participants learn about themselves and others by participating in activities with horses and processing the feelings, emotions, behaviors, and response patterns that emerge. This thesis outlines the history and evolution of equine assisted therapy highlighting the mythical, archetypal, and spiritual aspects of the horse and the healing value of re-connecting with nature. Developmental milestones and prominent contributors to the growth of the field are cited. Current controversies such as research and methodological issues, standards and credentials, statistical versus empirical data, the role of the horse, power issues within the treatment team, and developing professionalism are addressed. Differences in opinion among practitioners regarding the horse-human relationship and how it is interpreted are explored. Special consideration is given to the mechanisms of the unconscious such as transference, projection, projective identification, and idealization and how they influence the professional practitionerís orientation to the work and ability to facilitate effectively. It is concluded that the polarity of positions within the field serve a self-regulating function as the industry strives to develop balance.


TABLE OF CONTENTS

CHAPTER I - INTRODUCTION
    Riding in the Clouds
    Equine Assisted Therapy

CHAPTER II - HORSES IN HISTORY & HEALING
    Horses in History, Myth, & Magic
    Horses as Connection to Nature
        Unus Mundus & Animi Mundi
        Civilization & Nature
        Egocentricity & Zoocentricity
        Healing Cycles
        Ethology & Biophilia
        Ecopsychology
    Horses and Spirituality
    Horses and Instincts
        Atrophy of Instincts
        Riding the Instincts
    Equine Archetypes
        Archetypes Defined
        Aesthetics, Power & Speed
        Transportation: Literal, Psychic,
          & Spiritual
        Archetype of Freedom
        Archetype of Guardian, Guide,
          & Wisdom Figure
        Equine Lexicon
    Horses in Therapy: A Historical Overview
        Animal-Assisted Therapy
        Natural Horsemanship
        NARHA
        Other Key Figures & Programs
        EAGALA
        DSM Classifications
    Experiential Therapy
   

CHAPTER II (Continued)
    Features Specific to the Equine Experience
        Non-verbal Communication
        Horses as Mirrors
        Horses as Metaphor
        Horses as Objects of Transference & Projection
        Anthropomorphism

CHAPTER III - CONTROVERSIES IN THE FIELD
    Research, & Methodological Issues
        Standards & Credentials
        Statistical Data
        Heuristics & Hermeneutics
        Technique or Adjunct Therapy
    The Role of the Horse
    Perspectives & Interpretations
        Yin versus Yang
        Inter-Species Collective Unconscious
        Participation Mystique
        The Problem of Projection
        Mystification & Idealization
    The Shadow of the Treatment Team
    Developing Professionalism
        Qualifications & Competence
        Horsemanship
        Professional Organizations

CHAPTER IV - DEVELOPING BALANCE

REFERENCES

AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH