In The Jaws of A Horse – Part 2

I must admit, after my post last week, I thought this story was pretty much finished. But as they often do, the horses had a different idea. Not only was there another big piece to come, but another Tapping video – a gift to ALL of you and your beloved equines…

I arrived at the barn last week and only Zorra was there to greet me.

Zorra

I’m not entirely sure, but I don’t believe this has ever happened. Zorra is down the lower end of the pecking order and usually moved off quickly by Audelina or Montaro. But on this day, all the others watched me come in, but they stayed out in the field – also very bizarre since I usually give them their alfalfa or feed first, so they normally all head for the paddock as soon as they see my truck.

I went straight to Zorra and she wanted all her favorite places scratched – inside her ears (gotta put on the gloves for that one!), her udder, her arched Andalusian neck, and her belly. As I scratched away and she soaked up the bliss of having my ministrations all to herself, I said to her, “How come I’m always doing stuff for you? Would it kill you to give me just a little ride?”

I have a strict policy that I do not get on my horses’ backs unless they invite me on. Not that they tolerate me getting on, or that they allow me to get on. But they actively, decisively invite me on their back for a ride – that they say, ‘Yes, that sounds like fun! Let’s do/try that.’

Zorra has not invited me on her back for about 2 years now. We have been walking a path of healing together for her past riding trauma, but we are not done yet. Every so often, I am overcome with longing. I know she doesn’t want me on her back because it triggers old trauma and it hurts. But I do so love consensual riding where we become one body linked together with each other and the earth.

So that day I was feeling grumbly about it. I stood up on the slow feeder (about 2.5 feet high) and I said to her, “You know, if you walked up right beside me here, then that could be a signal to me that you want to give me a ride for a few minutes.” She immediately sent me a picture of the other horses coming in and how that would panic her – she wouldn’t feel safe to be moved around by them with me her back. I said, “The second we see any of them walking this way, I’ll get off.”

Zorra walked up beside me and then turned her body away from me and backed her rump up against my legs. “What?” I said teasingly, “You want me to sit on your rump? I can do that, even thought it’s going to feel pretty weird for both of us.” As I spoke, I started scratching her dock and then realized that her lumbar and bum muscles felt pretty tight, so I switched to massage.

As I massaged her from behind her rump, I was looking down upon her back and withers. As I thought about myself sitting near her withers I started to get this strange, squiffy feeling and then it felt a bit fearful for me. I realized I didn’t even want to sit on her back as it didn’t feel safe.

I thought, “Wow, I must still be freaked out from Jax biting my head.” Because I’ve been riding since I was 2 years old and Zorra is one of the safest, calmest horses I’ve ever ridden. When she gets scared, she doesn’t spook or bolt, she plants and looks/studies the scary thing. She’s also very caring – one time she witnessed me being bucked off another horse (all my fault and I totally deserved it) and she was really upset about it.

At that moment, Jax and Juno walked into the barn. Mystifyingly, Audelina and Montaro continued to stay out in the field. Jax and Juno said a brief hello, stepped up onto the side wing of the barn and immediately dropped into meditative state. Juno’s head was facing Jax’s rump and he had his nose in Jax’s flank. I’d never seen them meditate like that – pressed close together. Jax invited me to join them.

So I stood about 3 feet away from him, with my chest facing Jax’s head, and slowed my breathing and sent my energy down into the earth. As I opened my heart (front and back) I felt this absolute wave of love, flooding from Jax into my heart. Then he started speaking to me:

“What you felt when I bit your head is what horses like Zorra feel when a rider gets on their back” He flashed me a picture of a lion taking down a horse by leaping onto the horse’s back and gripping the horse’s withers with its claws. “It is the same primal, amygdala-response, horrifying terror you felt when I took your head in my jaws.”

“When a human gets on a horse’s back without loving, caring, slow preparation and without asking for and receiving permission first, that is what happens. And like you are feeling; how can we ever trust you again? Even though years pass, and you treat us lovingly and well, or we go to a new owner who doesn’t get on without asking permission, how do we get over that primal terror, that body memory that is now locked into our cells?”

“Just as you are now always on the alert for me, or looking over your shoulder, and your body goes into alert when I am behind you, and you are wondering if you will ever be able to trust me. You are wondering if we can ever have the settled, loving relationship we had before. That is what happens to us when we have been traumatized in that same way.”

Understanding seeped through me; especially poignant due to the experience I’d just had with Zorra. My question to Zorra, of ‘Why? After all this time and all this healing, building muscle and strengthening, why do you still not want me on your back?’ became crystal clear.

Imagine if Jax wanted to take the back of my head into his jaws again? He could promise me it wouldn’t hurt, that he would stop as soon as I asked, that the feeling of oneness would be beautiful… and my answer would still be, “Hell no!”

Jax

But imagine if he’d seen this as a process and started by just nuzzling my ears, nuzzling the back of my head and breathing onto my neck as we meditated together. What if he took weeks and months to help me feel totally comfortable and safe with him using his lips and teeth (ever so gently and respectfully) on parts of my head. And never once hurting me. And stopping immediately if I didn’t feel comfortable. Or stopping for months or years if I said, “Hey, this head thing of yours is really weird, I don’t like it.” And then slowly, slowly, progressing to taking my head in his mouth – still sounds bizarre I know, but let’s just pretend that’s our weird way of connecting and sharing love. IF he did all that, and approached it that way, would I still have experienced primal terror? I don’t think so. In fact, I’ve seen this – once with a man and his bear and another time with a man and his lion – and both men showed only happiness.

As we meditated together and all of this understanding seeped in, I realized I needed to do an EFT Tapping session on releasing this primal trauma from Zorra. And my way in to understanding the depth of that experience would be informed by my own experience of Jax taking my head in his jaws. Because the feelings, the experience – mentally, physically, energetically – is the same.

It’s also interesting that Jax taking my head in his jaws left no visible bruising or swelling on my head or skin. So when we ‘break’ a horse to ride and we don’t see any visible bruising or swelling from the saddle pressing down, the cinch cutting off breath, our heels digging in, the mouth or nose being pressured, and the neck cramping or spasming, we think the horse is just fine and that we are being gentle and humane.

You can’t see soreness or tenderness. The points on my head where his teeth gripped were tender to the touch for almost 10 days – and were an ongoing reminder of my vulnerability. Zorra has thickened tissue where the dressage rider dug at her sides – she was ‘only’ ridden a couple times a week for 3 months. But her body armored against the assault. And even though she was ‘broke’ to ride by a Natural Horsemanship trainer, who worked slowly, used pressure-release and made the right thing easy, he never once asked permission. Or asked if she was enjoying herself, or let her be in charge of the day.

Of course, as I prepared to do the EFT Tapping session for Zorra and me, I realized that this gift must extend out to all horses and their people. So I used open-ended language in the video and I instruct you how to surrogate-tap for your own horse(s). Even if you never plan to ride your horse again, I encourage you to tap along and release this deep-seated trauma from their cells, tissues and consciousness. I have no idea if Zorra will ever want to be ridden again, but I know that doing this healing will only benefit our relationship. Likewise, if you run any kind of horse sanctuary – or visit one – it will be a tremendous gift to tap on behalf of all the horses there.

I would love to hear what comes up for you as you do this tapping session. It may take a while for any changes or release to show up in your horse(s). And this may also pave the way for another piece or layer of healing to come forward – we’ll just keep peeling the onion!

Open to healing in all forms

In the first part of this story, I told you that even in the midst of the trauma, I intentionally ‘opened to whatever healing was present for me in this moment.’ And in that first week, I noticed that my upper palate in my mouth had widened. And I also had a lot of soreness in my temporomandibular joints (TMJ) on both sides, even though his teeth were nowhere near those joints.

Well this week, I discovered Jax had given me a most precious gift: I could sing again.

Driving home in my truck, I began singing along to my playlist. After about 10 minutes I realized, “Wait a minute, my throat doesn’t hurt…wtf??!!” I have no idea what caused it, but about 6 or 7 years ago my throat (near the top, towards the back) began to ache and then hurt whenever I sang. It hurt enough that I stopped singing. I could hum just fine, for as long as I wanted, but the days of singing with abandon were over. I went to various therapists and voice coaches, but there was no change. A couple years ago I bought a fabulous DVD program by Per Bristow, called Sing With Freedom, and that helped, but there was still a strong achy soreness if I sang for longer than a few minutes.

About a month previous to Jax biting my head, I had attended a spiritual Vocal Journey with music therapist Amit Carmelli. I felt things loosen and shift during that experience and my throat stayed looser, but still a bit sore, for a few days, then back to its regular soreness and ache. I’m not willing to have my esophagus scoped, so that was that.

Until this.

I sang for 30 full minutes as I drove home – just like when I was 9 years old standing on the platform at the front of the church, singing loud enough so the person in the back pew could hear the words. And no ache, no soreness, no pain whatsoever. In fitting tribute, I sang Etta James’ Out of The Rain as the dogs and me flew down the back roads.

I was kind of afraid to test it again, in case that was just a fluke. But when we had family and friends over for a big Thanksgiving dinner, we ended up circle singing and belting out other favorites as the evening wore on, and again, no soreness whatsoever.

My temporomandibular joints are just fine, my head is fine, my ear is nearly healed:

2 weeks later

And we have this amazing, powerful gift for horses worldwide, to be healed from a foundational, core trauma.

So it’s kind of like someone who goes on a Healing Journey from cancer, or colitis and they say, “This disease is both the best thing and the worst thing that ever happened to me.” And maybe that’s what true evolution is about – where we move out of the realm of good and bad, black and white, and we begin to see everything as a palette of colors. Red is not better than blue; it’s just different. And how could our world shift if we opened to just experiencing each and every color? Without judgement, without fear or bracing… but with ultimate trust in the abundant love of the universe.

Jini Patel Thompson is a natural health writer and Freedomite. She began riding at age 2 in Kenya, and got her first horse at age 8 in Alberta, and so continues a life-long journey and love affair with these amazing creatures.
In The Jaws of A Horse – Part 2

18 thoughts on “In The Jaws of A Horse – Part 2

  • October 10, 2017 at 4:29 pm
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    Dear Jini,
    I have been on a horse journey for over twenty years now, coming very late to horses though I had always loved them from afar. I am now 66. Always a nervous rider, always looking for ways to be ‘better, better, best’ in everything I did, ‘finding’ many trainers and teachers along the way, I now find that my horses are purely ‘my friends’ and YOU are the only one I really pay any attention to when you speak about your ‘horse adventures’. Thank you.
    Jan (Australia)

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    • October 10, 2017 at 5:57 pm
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      Awww thanks Jan – that’s a pretty strong endorsement for me to keep sharing my stuff, no matter how “out there” it gets! I’d love to hear if there are any changes in your horses, or shifts in your relationship after you do the tapping video for them. I find the ‘group consciousness’ around this stuff the horses are doing just fascinating πŸ™‚ Oh, and post a pic of your horses if you get a chance. I always love to connect with our precious community here.

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  • October 10, 2017 at 9:01 pm
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    Jini, please never give up sharing your ‘stuff’ PLEASE! I will try the tapping video, because one of my horses is ‘difficult’ for me to do ANYthing with . . . things which are for his own benefit, but that are different in the slightest to the usual routine with absolutely no expectations. I mean cleaning his hoofs! He had developed some cracks which need treatment, and he is perfect for my hoof trimmer, perfect for me if someone is actually holding him but I cannot tie him up (something I prefer not to do anyway, but thought it might help so I could get to his feet) and if I put the halter on and stand on the lead rope while I am doing his feet, he is not too bad. However, to get him to even pick up his feet is a struggle. He will actively put all his weight on the hoof I am trying to lift, by lifting the opposing one! What I cannot understand is that he is so good for anyone else dealing with his feet, with me at his head, but not me. He is a standardbred who likely raced, but in the six years I have had him, like you with yours, he has known nothing but fairness and kindness and almost no riding. He seems not to even want to interact with me, just eats and leaves. My appaloosa is the opposite and thrives on any sort of attention. He is definitely not ridden as he has ringbone but manages quite well. Thanks for chatting!

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      • October 16, 2017 at 3:04 am
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        Jini, I LOVED The post you wrote and it included so many questions and dilemmas I have ever thought of! I did the tapping session, for myself, for Digby and for any other horse in my vicinity who might benefit. Perhaps I expected miracles over night LOL, but nothing changed. My Digby just wants to eat and leave . . . He is happy for his eyes to be cleansed with cold tea daily, a habit I have in warmer weather because when my other horse Biscuit the appy came to me, his eyes were running pus, but now are good as long as I keep them wiped. He also has eyebright herb. Digby asked me one day some years back that I should also do HIS eyes! Go figure! ‘no you cannot do my feet, but will you do my eyes, just like Biscuit!!!’ Anyway, I continue to love and care for them equally. I did remember though, that when Digby was being ridden when my soulmate horse Rocco was alive and my friend kerri would ride Digby with me on Rocco, he actually loved going out and about. My friend is competent, kind and not bothered by much, so I guess it put him at ease. When my circumstances are such that I may no longer be fit enough to care for horses, it is to Kerri that Digby will go. He responds very well to her. ANyway, that is my story! Thanks again for your articles. Regards, Jan

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        • October 16, 2017 at 4:08 am
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          Hi Jan, it can take a while for the energetic healing to filter through to the physical body, and other times it can be very fast. Also, this tapping may only be 1 layer of the trauma a horse has undergone. There may also be physical issues that need to be healed too. Or the back muscles need to be strengthened before the horse can carry weight without pain. Or the horse is actually protein-deficient and cannot build that muscle, and so on. Thanks for the tip about eyebright – I will try that!

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          • October 16, 2017 at 4:32 am
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            Thank you for a super quick response! Yes, I always think of pain first, and when Digby came to me, I told him he would never have a bit in his mouth again, and I researched saddles to the ‘n’th degree settling on a treeless with an excellent pad underneath. HE seemed comfortable. My personal preference was to ride my Rocco bareback, but even that has split opinions! I have also
            researched feed options , and again settled on what seems to suit them both. I do not use prepared commercial feedstuff, but prefer lupins, chia seeds and adding minerals myself. I soak speedibeet and copra for the fibre and other benefits mixing that with some oaten chaff. They also have meadow hay and pasture all the time so I think I have the protein covered. Perhaps you meant in the past that his diet was not correct for him and that it has long lasting affects? I know there have been times when I have administered slippery elm powder because I have felt he may have after affects from the racing industry, possibly ulcers. But right now, from my observations, he seems in peak condition physically, has not been ridden for at least two years, but it is emotions, his mind, which create the issues. Some horses manage change quite well, but he is not one of them (my appy is) and unfortunately due to circumstances beyond my control, over the last few years, my horses have been moved a few times. Always at pasture, never yarded or stabled, but I think the changes have affected Digby a lot. He is the sort of horse who thinks that he is ‘responsible’ for any and every other creature on the property even when they are ”strangers” to him, and not in his paddock.. He gets anxious if they are moved or ridden, or taken out. I have spent time trying to show him that he is only responsible for himself and Biscuit, and when I am there, he is not even responsible for that. We are in quite a comfortable situation property wise at present, with one other horse there, and even though it has taken some months for him to feel settled there, aside from the behaviours I have mentioned, and as long as I am not asking anything if him, Digby is quite settled. Biscuit is as cool as a cucumber . . . just wish some of it would rub off on Digs! At the moment, I am just allowing things ‘to be what they are’ and if he chooses to stay with me even for a short time after his feed, then I will just do things he likes . . . strangely, if he stand still long enough, he turns to butter if I stroke his legs! Just don’t ask for his feet. LOL

          • October 16, 2017 at 5:02 pm
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            Well I imagine Digby is thrilled to be with you! And you have to wonder what long-term damage is done when they ride horses hard like that at only 2 years old – when their bones don’t harden, nor growth plates close until 5-6 years. Sounds like you’re on a good path πŸ™‚

  • October 10, 2017 at 10:34 pm
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    i am humbled, and so greatly honoured, to know you. gob-smacked today, no words. just a burst open heart. in astounded, lucid, confusion. xooxox sheila

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    • October 11, 2017 at 10:15 am
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      Yep that pretty much describes the state I’ve been walking around in! And this is just pure gold: “astounded, lucid, confusion”. YES. These magical, powerful beings – what they bring us to!!

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  • October 11, 2017 at 4:53 am
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    Thank you Jini for your stories…wonderful..
    It made me remember one of Tom Campbell’s comments in his lastest YT video “”” You know… sometimes we get a hard wack….and if we know the source of that wack we can grow and we can come out of it better than we were before…”””

    Lots of love, Geerteke XXX

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    • October 11, 2017 at 10:17 am
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      Yes, very true – and those of us that are more hard-headed than others, often need a stronger whack! Sending you hugs right back xoxo

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  • October 11, 2017 at 6:24 am
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    Hi Jini, Like Sheila I am gob-smacked and this was the case in your last posting as well. I am in the middle of a move to a very rustic cabin in the woods on the farm where my horses are boarded. Up until now I I have been living in town in the house that I sold two years ago. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would still be renting here instead of living on a farm with my horses. I sent a response to your post about a year ago that I was still searching for a farm to run an equine business and that bizarre circumstances kept arising to prevent a farm purchase. A year later and several near-purchases and/or farm shares later I decided it was time to shift some energy and to make a move to where I will be on the same land as the horses. To make a long story short I cried through most of the tapping with you after I read part one of “Head in Jaw..” and I continue to be in gratitude and in awe of the resonance that I have with your journey. So many parallels!! I love the message you received from Jax and am looking forward to listening to your latest tapping. Between listening to the recordings from the 2017 Symposium and your postings I am staying grounded in my process and am learning so much. I can’t thank you enough for your deep sharing. I have not heard anything about how Diedre is doing. Are you able to share or to pass on my love and appreciation to her for the great interviews?

    Love and light to you Jini,

    Joan

    Reply
    • October 11, 2017 at 10:51 am
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      Hi Joan, yes I will send your comment to Diedre. You can follow her progress here:

      https://www.gofundme.com/healing-diedre/

      If you scroll down, there is a bar that says: Subscribe to Updates and that will keep you in the loop and allow you access to details of her Healing Journey thus far.

      I have been messaging with another Horse Listener through Facebook and she too is having uncanny parallels with this journey. She wrote:

      “…from my experience the state of shock creates the fertile soil for manifestation.” Her journey is just a series of bizarre circumstance like you mentioned that then lead her to the next piece, but she too does not have her own land yet – despite having money to purchase it. It seems her horses or the universe need her to go on a journey first – so she keeps moving from rental place to rental place as guided. It is all just fascinating to me. And now that I can spontaneously feel gratitude (!!) I am finally at peace with my own situation and able to enjoy being here, whilst being gently curious about what the future holds.

      Now I have a question for you: Are you getting shift from just listening to the tapping vidoes? Or are you also tapping along?

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  • October 12, 2017 at 7:32 am
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    Jini….Loved reading about your continued healing/learning in regards to your bite on the head. I find it so fascinating that it continues to open you to new realizations and help you discover and process. I have explained to you many times of how much abuse I think Bullet has gone through. From past trauma before he & I came together and regrettably some from myself also (even if unintentionally/ignorantly) He has expressed so strongly and consistently that he does not want to be ridden. I feel your analogy of the lion on the back and even much deeper the bite to the head were very powerful for me to help me see his side with much more clarity. I actually quit riding him close to 2 years ago but at the same time kept that hope & try & want that he will/would someday invite me and be ok with me on his back. The last year has been much easier to except his “NO” and mostly ….let go,…because Dreamer came into my life and his opinion/attitude towards riding is completely opposite and he seems to enjoy our outings quite a lot and even sends riding energy/thoughts my way sometimes…as if to inniciate an outing. It seems to happen when he’s bored, because he is only on 12 acres and although I am so thankful to have it….I know it’s not enough to keep him stimulated at all times….he’s also 1/2 Arab so has lots of desire to go and get out. I know his attitude is probably on the rare side among horses and I give his previous human in life all the credit she nurtured an amazing horse. I am so grateful to & for him everyday.
    He is a gift to me for sure and I appreciate him with every fiber of my being. I just wanted to say that this helps me even more …to understand the feelings Bullet has and his unwavering desire to NOT be ridden. I love and value all 3 of my horses and even though Bullet & Banner will probably not be ok with being ridden ever again physically or mentally they still give so much to me and are also true gifts to be able to share my life with. I will be doing the tapping for sure & just want you to know that your openness is so deep felt. Also on an unrelated note …..looks like you cut your hair? & it looks great✌🏼️❀️🐴

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    • October 15, 2017 at 10:32 pm
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      Hey Michelle, yes I did – got tired of long and heavy, so chopped a bunch of it off! And thank you πŸ™‚

      My main childhood horse was like Dreamer and she was also half Arab! She would come over to where I was playing with my friends and beam, “LET’S GO RIDING!!” at me until I left my friends and went out with her. I never even considered not riding her, because she always loved it and it was one of the ways she did energy work on me and carried me away on her love. One of my other ponies wasn’t keen on being ridden, but he didn’t want to get left behind, so he would join us. And the other pony loved being ridden by my best friend and they had the most hilarious relationship – he would look for those 3-4 feet deep snowbanks and toss her into them, she would laugh her head off and he would clean the snow off her face. They did this over and over again – both having a riot. Keep me posted if you notice any shifts after you do the tapping – it may take a week or two to show up as the release moves from the energy body to the physical body. xox

      Reply
  • October 12, 2017 at 10:57 am
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    Dear Jini,

    I love how you are able to take what message they give you and put it into words. I have been on a journey like no other for the past 12 or so years. It all started with my mare. She is 15 and been by my side since she was 9 months. I have done all the training so I take full responsibility for our relationship. I really haven’t ridden her for the last 2 years. She is ride-able, however I have not had the spark to get on and I think I know why now. She has never really wanted me on her back. I have had times that I have planned on riding and she moved so much in the crossties I took that as a definite NO! So I listened…I have done my own energy work on her and I am familiar with tapping. I will follow the video and apply it to her and see what comes up for us. She is very bossy with me on the ground and under saddle we are one. I want the same on the ground…I have hope. I will ask the question and wait for the answer.

    Thank you! Roxanne

    Reply
    • October 15, 2017 at 10:12 pm
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      Beautiful Roxanne! I look forward to hearing what happens with her.

      Reply

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