Can we speak to the natural world and have it talk back to us? Are we all potential animal whisperers?
Africa’s San Bushmen, Australia’s Aborigines, Native Americans and other indigenous tribes have always insisted that they could communicate with the creatures around them – and so can we all, according to animal whisperer Anna Breytenbach.
“Interspecies communication is not a gift,” she insists. “It is a natural ability that everybody has and is simply a matter of getting in touch with our intuition and accessing something that isn’t part of our everyday five-sensory reality.
“The First People were easily able to communicate telepathically with all of nature and didn’t consider this unusual.
“Every person in the tribe had the ability to connect in non five-sensory ways with their surroundings; to know from the animals where they were, which was a good animal to hunt, or which plants would be medicinal, toxic or nourishing.”
Now, perhaps for the first time, this is eloquently explained and dramatically illustrated in The Animal Communicator, an inspiring and heart-warming new documentary film by the Natural History Unit Africa which explores our spiritual and emotional connection with nature.
It is the superb creation by Craig and Damon Foster, who are famous for The Great Dance which captures a San Bushman hunt, with environmental journalist Swati Thiyagarajan in the role of presenter.
I arranged a special preview for the Findhorn Foundation community and many were moved to tears by the profound messages from the mostly misunderstood animals with whom we share this great adventure on Planet Earth.
Of course, in Findhorn the idea of co-creating with nature and connecting with other life-forms is widely accepted and respected, so the film resonated strongly with its audience, filling many with a sadness that we have become so disconnected from the vibrant living world around us.
As a close friend of Anna and a fellow South African who has attended a number of her workshops, the profound messages were familiar although I was still touched by the haunting beauty of modern humanity’s home at the southern tip of Africa, where much of the filming took place.
And the scenes of conflict between humans and baboons, our close relatives with whom we share more than 98% of our DNA, touched a deep chord. These highly intelligent and sensitive animals are shot, poisoned and killed or maimed by speeding motorists – and yet we are the trespassers who have invaded their traditional domain.
In Cape Town I came to know a local troop well and was treated with curiosity and warmth, the youngsters wanting to engage me in their playful antics. It is in the company of beings like these that I feel my spirits soaring and appreciate the healing potential of nature.
The film introduces us to a variety of species, including a magnificent black leopard that had known the cruelty of humans while imprisoned in a European zoo.
Anna moves effortlessly between species and landscapes, demonstrating that the same universal techniques apply whether connecting with wild animals, or domestic or habituated ones.
She says communicators can be especially helpful in enhancing relationships between medical professionals and their animal patients, be they wild or otherwise. “For example, vets can find out directly – from the horse’s mouth, so to speak – what the animal’s experience of their pain or discomfort is; where in the body it occurs; what might have caused it; and even what might make it better.
“This is immensely helpful to medical professionals who otherwise have to rely on observation and other diagnostic measures alone.”
In the closing scenes of the film, Anna stresses: “We must remember we are living in a world borrowed from our children’s future.
“This is a most delicate time in human history and the future of the planet and all its inhabitants relies on what we do now and what choices we make. These choices can be informed by what the animals are telling us if we are just prepared to listen and to hear.
“Perhaps the only real question for us humans is how are we going to respond?”
Visit Anna’s website.