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Would you like to talk to the animals?

Posted at 9:30 am, August 15, 2013 in Arts & Entertainment
Pea Horsley, animal whisperer

It’s not out of the question, you know. It wasn’t until Pea Horsley met Mister Butch – a domesticated rabbit with penchant for greens, telepathy and ITV’s ‘You’ve Been Framed!’ – that she quit her job as a West End stage manager and began talking to animals professionally. And yes, the former sceptic knows how that sounds. ‘I was quiet about it at first, but this is something that can be learned,’ she claims. ‘I’ve just taught a workshop in Snowdonia where a woman who was doing it for the first time got two [participants’ pets’] names completely right. And someone else was able to describe exactly how one of the dogs who came in had lost one of his legs.’

Lucky guesses, some might argue: pets’ names are rarely imaginative, and there’s a finite number of ways to lose a leg. Still, the therapeutic benefits of bonding with a pet are well documented. Whether it is similarly beneficial to commune with less domesticated creatures is something you can discover this Saturday, when Horsley will be joined by fellow animal communicator Anna Breytenbach for another workshop, this one about communicating with wild animals – via photographs. Untamed creatures in particular make great conversationalists, she says. ‘They talk about bigger issues or they’re not interested at all. I just came back from Kenya and one of the elephants there told me, “We live in peace.”’

The day starts with a screening of Breytenbach’s documentary following her efforts to help wildlife in her native South Africa, called ‘Snakes on a Higher Plane of Existence’. Just kidding, it’s called ‘The Animal Communicator’. After a Q&A and lunch, Horsley and Breytenbach lead a series of meditative exercises designed to open attendees’ hearts and minds – a necessary precursor, says Horsley, to communicating from the required ‘place of unconditional love’. Then the real fun starts. Participants are invited to speak with wild animals – using their pictures – during a guided practice session. ‘The photo is an energetic link through to the frequency of the animal,’ explains Horsley. After all, that, she says, is how she met the career-changing rabbit. Nick Aveling

The Wild Wisdom workshop is on Sat Aug 17 at The Kairos Centre, SW15. www.animalthoughts.com. £100, £20 morning only

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