Book Review: ‘Heart to Heart With Horses’

By Kathleen Prasad.

Title: Heart to Heart With Horses: The Equine Lover’s Guide to Reiki
Author: Kathleen Prasad
Publisher: Animal Reiki Source
Pages: 189

My working knowledge of Reiki healing was rudimentary at best prior to picking up Kathleen Prasad’s guide: I worked for several years on a guest ranch in Wyoming that hosted a week-long Reiki clinic, and from what I could gather the process appeared to include meditation and lots of quiet time spent with the herd. From an outsider’s observation, not a lot looked like it was happening — individuals might lay their hands on a horse from time to time, but otherwise the people appeared to just be standing there. I would have been hard-pressed to define Reiki to another casual onlooker.

Thanks to Heart to Heart With Horses, I have retrospectively a much better idea of what might have been happening all those years ago in the dusty corral. Prasad, a world-recognized teacher of Reiki and president of the Shelter Animal Reiki Association, describes the system of Reiki in terms that both help the reader understand how meditative healing works and describe a form of healing that’s rarely quantifiable, methodical or even predictable. Reiki is a Japanese style of meditation and a way to connect with the True Self.

Admittedly, with only an lay observer’s point of view on what Reiki was and what it could accomplish, I came into this book a bit skeptical but with an open mind. I was impressed first by the foreword by Allen M. Schoen, D.V.M., in which Schoen states clearly that Reiki should not be substitute for veterinary medicine but a complementary therapy; Prasad states in the her introduction that Reiki is not for “curing” but for “healing” — that is, not to rid the body of disease or injury, but to heal the heart and mind even while the body may be ailing. Prasad examines Reiki through the lens of a period of her own illness and how spiritual healing helped her through months of physical pain.

As I read page after page, Reiki was demystified for me and prior assumptions were laid to rest: anyone can practice Reiki with the proper mindset and guidance; Reiki is a meditative practice that helps us find a heart connection with horses; Reiki is not necessarily something we “do” but something we experience.

Each chapter contains case studies from Reiki practitioners, helping to illustrate the principles and concepts that Prasad introduces and describes with real-world examples and stories. Meditations are scattered throughout the book as well to help the reader in their individual Reiki sessions. Prasad’s writing style is lyrical and engaging, taking a topic that could swing to either extreme of too clinical or too fantastical to turn Heart to Heart With Horses into a text that any horse lover can appreciate.

After finishing the book, I find my mind much more open to the concept of Reiki having received an education by Prasad’s text. Whether you are interested in Reiki, have experienced Reiki meditation and spiritual healing in the past or are a total Reiki skeptic, I encourage any horse lover to keep an open mind and give this book a chance to open the door.

Heart to Heart With Horses is available at Amazon.

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