It’s not even April yet and I’m finding myself frustrated with the amount of rain we’ve been having. It always seems to rain on my days off, making it highly uncomfortable to enjoy the outdoors when I have the opportunity. Yet, then I see the little crocuses, and bigger daffodil flowers, pressing their heads up out of the earth and enjoying the nourishing raindrops that are falling on their uplifted blossoms. I think about all the other blooms which are trying to make their way out of the earth now and which need the rainfall to help them grow. So, I cuddle up indoors, watch the rain splatter against my windows and in my garden giving the Earth what we all require — the nourishment of water.
According to Yoga and Ayurveda (the sister science of yoga) philosophy, water is one of the five elements that make up everything in nature. Water is essential for life. Without it, nothing can live. Inside our bodies, water plays a vital role in our health and well-being, helping to regulate our body temperature, lubricate our joints, cushion our organs and tissues, dissolve and carry nutrients to our cells as well as assisting in flushing out waste and toxins. Water in its natural state is formless, fluid and transparent, unless it’s frozen into snow or ice where it becomes more solid, or steaming and bubbling where it becomes steam. It is ever changeable, this element, just like us and our lives. Because of that, it is a symbol of the ability to flow with the river of constant change and adapt to the ever-evolving nature of life. Picture water’s many forms and think of your own self. Do you flow like water? Are you rigid like ice? Are you hot and bubbling? Or, are you feeling stagnant and sludgy? Whichever you most resonate with today, you can be sure that, just as water changes and adapts constantly, so will you.
Sometimes, it’s necessary to adjust and adapt just like water working itself downstream despite the obstacles it may meet, like logs and rocks in the river. The way in which water navigates obstacles can inspire us to work similarly with our own challenges. Water will not force its way through an obstacle. It will effortlessly find another way to get around it. Have you ever had the experience where you had to make a change in order to navigate obstacles and make things flow (like taking online classes in order to practice yoga or working from home or doing all your shopping online or the million other things that changed in the past two years as we found ourselves needing to go with the flow)? We have to be adaptable, receptive to the possibility of change and willing to make the change or we become rigid and stagnant. In order to find peace of mind and go with the flow, a change has to made. This is the water element. It’s about adaptability and it’s a good thing we have it!
Hope to see you on your mat this week in one of our in-studio or online classes where you can practice moving fluidly like water, adapting to challenges and obstacles with grace and integrity, and being receptive to the possibility of change for inner growth and greater wisdom.
As always, thanks for reading my musings. Namaste, Leslie