March 22nd was a global call to bless our waters. I didn’t have time that day to offer the proper prayer called for but luckily prayer comes in many forms. As I rode the ferry that morning back to the island where I live, I gazed down at the water I traveled upon with wonder. That to me is a form of prayer. How amazing is this element upon which this huge and heavy boat floats. Truly astounding! How can this liquid open up to my diving form and allow me to enter it at the same time this ship rides upon it as if the surface were solid? This substance called water supports an entire world with all its denizens while simultaneously providing food for the masses on land AND dealing with the outpouring of industrial waste. How astonishing is this being? Beyond words…realllllly. And that awe, that reverence, that love I feel are certainly a form of praying…and ignites my desire to protect this precious element.
At the time designated for our region to pray for water I was teaching Painting True, an intuitive art class designed to nourish the soul, at the new healing space on Bainbridge Island called the Dayaalu Center.
Intuitive painting is a form of prayer so I’d told the group that water would be our muse that day. I titled the session: The Many Faces of Water, Reflections of the Soul.
water responds to the conditions around it (temperature, wind, earthquakes, moon, etc),
water is colorless but reflects every color imaginable from both above and below,
water transforms and changes character depending on its relationship to everything else. It can shatter into a million droplets and come back together in a single torrent.
Water is all about connectivity, kinship, magnetism, gravity.
Then suddenly one of our members – who happens to be a retired rocket scientist – said,
“You know, water is the only element in which its solid form is lighter than its liquid form. If ice sank to the bottom rather than floated to the top, our entire planet would be a different place.”
That got us really excited as insights started to flow about the relationship between liquid and solid, spirit and soul, spirit and matter. What if our body, as a solid, rises up out of the spirit, as vapor. What if the soul, as our body, floats up from the depths of the watery womb of spirit. Something about this reflection: the soul is the solid version of the liquid/gaseous spirit – this insight animates my being and feels like deep prayer and all of that is inspired by our conversation about water as replenishing, nourishing, cleansing, responsive, malleable…ahhhhhhhhh water, I am beholden to you for so much more than quenching my thirst.
And to you, dear painters, you quench my thirsty soul! Thank you.