The Seventh Pillar of Breeding Arabian Horses: A God who cares!

“Man and beast thou savest, O Lord. “                                                                       Psalm 36: 6

This last chapter deals with the last, and in the opinion of the author, most important pillar that supports the world of the Arabian horse. At the same time this may be the most delicate subject to speak about. Nevertheless the author has decided to include this pillar in his book. To include the question of God and of His influence on the breed of the Arabian horse in a book of the 21st century may sound strange to many a modern people. But to most Arabian people familiar. It is the hope of the author, that the readers of this book, regardless of their heritage, might not bypass it without reflecting on this seventh pillar of this book, the one and most important pillar of life: a personal God who cares!

For the societies of the old East the existence of God was  without question. Also nowadays the Muslim world regards God the creator of the universe without doubt. This is even demonstrated in the Museum of Natural History in Riad, unthinkable in any museum of the western world. In this context we set the following motto of the late Dr. Wenzler from Marbach State Stud in Germany:

“Breeding is the humble partaking in the creation of God”.

This reminds us of someone beyond our own imagination and influence. Regardless of any philosophy or religion, or personal perception of life, we can agree on the fact that we are responsible for our doing, also as breeders of horses.

A God who cares?

In the face of the wave of violence that threatens the world at the beginning of this third millennium, a chapter on the influence of God on the breeding of horses seems, at least, of less importance. Many people will even ask the question if there really is a God who cares. Why, if there is a God, has he forsaken mankind alone with its problems?

A crisis of unknown dimensions has developed, especially in large regions of the Near and Middle East: Wars and civil wars, violence and terror in an unprecedented dimension. 60 million refugees worldwide that have lost their homes in 2015. A similar crisis has brought forth badu society in Early Iron Age. A society created by refugees, based on group solidarity and the unwritten law of the desert, aimed at making survival possible for all its members, including the weak. A society relying completely on the camel.

Yes, this society was strongly characterized by violence. Meeker, in his book “Literature and Violence in North Arabia”, expresses his hope, that a “study of the unique period” of the Bedouin time, “during which the personal voice was composed in a setting of uncertain relationships, …promises to provide an understanding of the archaic foundations of the religious and political traditions of the arid zone.” In this context he also speaks of the most distinctive features of Near Eastern civilization. In the opinion of the author, the most distinctive feature of that civilization encompasses the knowledge of a personal God. A personal God is synonymous with a God who cares. A God who has revealed and still reveals himself to mankind through his personal voice: His spoken (and later written) word, but as well through his creation, including men and wildlife.

The focus of this book has been the horse of the Bedouins, the war horse of Arabia and at the same time the family horse of the black houses of hair. The strong relation between Islam and this breed is obvious. On the other hand, the Biblical texts of the Old and New Testament do not present such a direct connection, but nevertheless are of Semitic origin (Khella, Lamsa). Therefore those texts should not be left out in the study of the Bedouin world.

The Horse in Biblical Texts

Old Testament

The books of the Bible can be looked at from very different viewpoints. Not everyone regards them as the word of God and today historical or critical approaches prevail. Regardless of this, the horse in Biblical texts is a horse of war, as we see in the book of Job. At the same time, the horse stands for strength and reputation of its owner. The horse is the horse of the mighty and noble, such as King Salomon/Sulaiman, the prototype of a  ruler. The  Bible  tells  us about Solomon´s/Sulaiman´s horses. 1. Kings 9, 23: "Thus King Solomon excelled all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom. And the whole earth sought the presence of Solomon to hear his wisdom, which God had put into his mind. Every one of them brought his present, articles of silver and gold, garments, myrrh, spices, horses, and mules, so much year by year." And verse 28 and 29: “And Solomon´s import of horses was from Egypt and Ku´e, and the king´s traders received them from Ku´e at a price. A chariot could be imported from Egypt for six hundred shekels of silver, and a horse for a hundred and fifty; and so through the king´s traders they were exported to all the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Syria." (Ku´e is a region in southeastern Anatolia, a land known for horses in those times.) To continue click here.