In response to “Ice, Water, Steam.” challenge.
Allan Watts says:
Water morphs into an almost unlimited number of forms – physical, spiritual, emotional and in the imagination. Ice, snow, rain, oceans, lakes, creeks, rivers, hot springs, geysers, steam vents, steam baths. It boils, it evaporates, it flows, it sublimates. It is pulled by the moon. It is a shape shifter; solid, liquid and gas. It reflects, it sparkles, it ties to our emotions. It is one of the four sacred elements; earth, air, fire and water. We cannot live without it. It flows through the veins of Mother Earth, sustaining all it touches. It is the lifeblood of the planet. It is essential and magical.
Have you ever cross – country skied or been snow shoeing in the moonlight? Diamonds are everywhere in the silence. I see diamonds and colored jewels, as the snow reflects the sun today. Sometimes when the sun angle is just right, and the shadows are long, I see opals. They nestle by shadows. The snow crystals have to be tall in order to see them. The sun refracts through from behind them, instead of reflecting on top. The colors seem like they are hovering above the snow, like an aura. I wish I could capture them with my camera, but alas, the frame just looks like a patch of generic, white snow.
Icicles, flowing water and bubbles. Poof! The bubbles pop, evaporating into the air that I feel on my face. The air delights in the happy energy of negative ions.
Snow doesn’t always melt and evaporate. It can sublimate, or skip the melting part and go directly to gas. This ice sculpture is a result of this. I see an eagle drinking from the creek. Do you see it? Let your imagination wander.
I reflect on water as often as I can. The gurgling, tinkling, roaring, whispering, giggling sounds – taking my thoughts deeper and deeper, as my heart opens wider and wider with gratitude for the privilege of being there. As I ponder and dream, I put energy and vision together. My thoughts drift. Sometimes I let them go. Sometimes a more disciplined concentration is called for. I see the face of the Universe reflected back to me.
As you gaze into a pool, are you reflecting or are you the reflection? Are you looking into a mirror or through it? Do you see the patterns on the water’s surface or do you miss them?
We all see the world differently. The outer world is a reflection of our inner reality. We are presented with situations throughout our lives that make us face up to, deal with and heal our issues on ever deepening levels of truth. Part of that is embracing the shadow parts of ourselves, of which we may not be particularly proud.
It is important to be mindful, and to have compassion and acceptance for the inner child, and all the ages we have been, and the experiences that each age has been through – from the darkest shadows to the heights of exhilaration. What is it like for you to give loving support as an adult to that beloved inner child? And how does it feel for her/him to accept it?
We see the world through the filter of our own experiences – much of which is subconscious and formed before we had words. So our world reflects all that back to us, like looking in a mirror.
My inner child delights in the exploration of the landscape, while my Higher Self sees meaning and metaphor in everything.
I may feel frustrated or angry at times. I throw a large rock into the stream. Splash! The water carries the negativity away. I may be particularly grateful about something. I toss a small, lovely stone upstream in thanks. I step over stones as I cross the creek, a threshold into my future.
Water likes to meander. It will do it if given half a chance. I am like water that way. I love to meander my way through a day, with no particular goal in mind, writing and taking pictures. My husband, a wildlife biologist, helps streams meander again that have been beaten down or straightened for a number of human caused reasons. He created a process called Induced Meandering to restore the natural meander pattern to a creek that has been hurt.
Is there a way in which you have maybe been beaten down or straightened into a form that doesn’t fit who you are? What healing needs to take place to flow back into who you really are; a spiritual being, having a human experience?
Emotions and water are closely related. After the loss of a love one, the waves of grief are tidal for a long time, then swells of sadness, laced with gratitude for the love wash over. Then the tidal waves again, then being caught in the breakers; then lesser swells, and swells again until finally, over time, the memories lap around our hearts bringing gentle, sad smiles.
The moon pulls the tides, as it does our own inner tides and tears.
I have seen people rage like hurricanes, weep like monsoons, cry tears of joy like rainbows, become serene and peaceful as a still lake, laugh like a waterfall or a stream over stones, lose their balance like being sucked into a whirlpool, feel fear and anxiety like a riptide, become moody like a cloudy day or deeper like a thunder storm. We have a relationship with water and it connects us. We are but a drop of water in a huge sea. We are all one.
A heron has its feet planted firmly in the soil beneath the creek, its wings ready to take it to the heights. A reminder to stay grounded, through our emotions that can feel overwhelming. After the healing, we can fly above.
Water can promote our imagination. This is a picture of mud washed down from a beaver dam stopped by some ice just under the water. What my imagination sees is a beaver hugging a white whale. My inner child loves it when I let my imagination take her wherever she wants to go.
Here is my dog, Mattie, looking at her own reflection. I doubt she is reflecting on her past or future, but she is definitely having a good time in the present moment.
The present moment is what we have, and the best way to remain in a peaceful state, is to be totally in it. She reminds me of that always.
Today, I pray for snow. A good snow pack will melt, and keep the creek running into the summer, when it will be rejuvenated by the monsoons. All the creatures large and small are dependent on it. I am grateful for water past, present and future.