Before a battle, the Native Americans would paint symbols on their horses that they believed held magical and spiritual significance. These symbols were thought to protect their horses, making them faster, stronger and braver, so that the horse may in turn protect it's rider during hard times. When the battle ended the Native Americans would paint yet another symbol on their horse, this time, representing what they went through during warfare.
In 2013 HEAL Psychology held a program for children in the foster care system in Sydney. At the end of the last day the children were asked to paint a symbol on a horse that represented their experience.
A 15 year old girl who had been in the foster care system since the age of 3 painted a tree trunk and three large green leaves. When asked the meaning behind her symbol, she explained that the tree trunk was her past. It represented strong roots of sadness and trauma that held her down. She went on to explain that the leaves were her future, bright and full of hope, and that only through working through her battle with the horses was she was able to learn and grow.
What this young woman didn't know, was that the Native Americans believed that painting the colour green on a horse represented endurance, clearer vision, and the power of healing. With that, the symbol of HEAL Psychology was born.
Today the three leaves represent a place where people from all walks of life may learn, grow, and heal with horses.
Founder / Psychologist at HEAL Psychology
Samantha Tassini, Psychologist and Founder of HEAL Psychology shares her experience as a therapist and in helping people heal with horses.