Maybe if the horses across the way hadn’t had their blinders on, they’d have seen the danger coming and saved themselves. The thinking amongst the ranchers was that the brave ones didn’t need blinders. And its true. When the fires come, the confident ones always find their way. The blinders are strictly meant to protect the skittish ones from things that scare them, but in the end it left them wholly unprepared. When lightning struck, the fires ignited, and the horses with blinders on succumbed one by one.
Or at least this is what I imagined could happen as I studied my neighbor’s horses this morning with the fire-spreading Santa Ana winds swirling violently around them. What swept through my mind was, Why do we shield our loved ones or even ourselves from the realities of life? What good does it do if we run the risk of being unprepared when something unexpected threatens us?
Might it make more sense to ditch the blinders and do the work that needs doing? If it’s tough out there, hadn’t we better get tough? If it’s scary out there, hadn’t we better face what scares us so we can overcome it? If we keep the blinders on and deny or hide from what we should be dealing with, won’t we just succumb to the flames when we least expect it?
It’s the blinders that should be burned, like denial and escapism via methods and activities such as: substance abuse; over-absorption in video games, online buying, or gambling; overachieving or blatant underachieving; avoiding professional help. Whatever the method, life with blinders on will only kill us in the end.