Dressage is to work with the horse in a certain way. Considered precise and conforming to the horse’s nature, true dressage must of necessity be diaphanous or risk missing the horse’s nature. If it is not, it is a merely a fiction, a vague approximation of the truth and while it may be popular and a brand sold for public consumption, but it will lack one important characteristic; authenticity.
When something is diaphanous, it is composed or arranged to permit ready perception or comprehension of an inner or veiled essence or substance. That essence and what makes dressage authentic is the nature of the horse. What is contrived and pushed reveals more the nature of human fantasy than the horse’s nature.
Is this not obvious? Now, what to do about it? Remove what is heavy handed. Study lightness and reduce all actions down to the most simple and basic form. Find the horse’s nature and build your dressage there without deceptions. Go down and find the earth. Look up and see heaven, now join them both in a new and personal dressage and in this you will discover what the old masters knew.
This is a journey of mind, yes, certainly, but it is connected to the body. In fact, if it is not embodied (linked ) , then you must start again. Really good dressage is not like one arrow shot from a bow pointed true, but rather it contains a willingness to constant start again and again until the arrow finds the true target again and again. If there are problems, start again. Vow to be a beginner forever. Make this your only goal; I will be a beginner until the end of time or the forces of nature take me elsewhere. This is authentic dressage.