Did the inspiration for the Spirit Whisperer name come from the Horse Whisperer movie/book?
Yes. The Horse Whisperer movie was released in 1998. I published Spirit Whisperers: Teachers Who Nourish a Child’s Spirit in 2002.
You might recall the story line of The Horse Whisperer. A Young teen (Grace) was involved in a tragic horse/truck accident. Her best friend was killed and her horse (Pilgrim) was severely injured. Tom Booker (Robert Redford) was persuaded by the girl's mother to work with the horse because of his rare ability to communicate with horses. He was said to be a horse whisperer. Much of the focus of the movie was on his efforts to heal Pilgrim.
The real message contained in the body of this film was Booker’s ability to heal the young girl. The horse was only the water he was splashing around in. What he was really accomplishing was bringing another human being back to life, back to a positive outlook, back to hope, back to finding meaning again. He touched Grace's spirit and allowed her to reach inside and touch it too. He was a Spirit Whisperer who used horses as his delivery system to reach a more important goal.
Booker loved horses. Spirit Whisperer educators love math, history, physical education, technology or other subjects of their choice. And these subjects are the water that they are splashing around in. What these educators are really doing is to teaching young people how to swim through life.
Music teachers let students get wet with music. Math teachers allow students to swim around in math. Language arts becomes the water that language arts teachers use to teach life skills and touch the spirit of their students. And whether they are teaching biology, Spanish, or government they never lose sight of their larger mission, teaching to a child's spirit.
Thank you Spirit Whisperers.