This week, as we continue our journey through the five elements we turn our attention towards the element of water. There are no shortage of example of water in nature, including streams, rivers, lakes and the ocean. The human body contains a significant amount of water as well as other fluids including blood and lymph.
The qualities of the water element include fluidity, refreshment, hydration, nourishment and purification. This element governs the circulatory system and is associated with the sense of taste. Fluidity brought forth by this element is important for the healthy functioning of muscles and joints, as well as for the health of the psycho-emotional being; allowing one to flow with life more easily. When the water element is in balance, life challenges are handled with greater ease and adaptability.
If you find yourself “stuck” in old habits, patterns, or relationships, you might consider bringing attention to the element of water. Strategies to assist in welcoming fluidity and flexibility in mind and body include the following.
- Visualization meditations: Choose those with a focus on water or flow. Still Lake Meditation is a favorite.
- Breathing exercises: Three-Part Breath enhances awareness of movement of the breath up and down the spine, moving like waves in the ocean.
- Yoga poses: Forward folds such as Janu Sirsasana and Pascimottanasana, hip opening poses such as Malasana and Eka Pada Rajakapotasana.
To experience the benefits of the water element, I suggest choosing a technique or two and practicing it on a daily basis for at least a week. It might be helpful to take notes or journal your experience. Be aware of enhanced feelings of fluidity and adaptability.