Essential for survival, we drink it, cook with it,bathe in it, swim in it, wash with it.
While covering much of our planet, around 97.5 percent is salt water, 2.09 per cent is frozen and 0.4per cent is fresh. Yet just 0.01 per cent of that freshwater is directly available for drinking and much ofthis is not considered clean. And the United Nationsestimates that more than 4000 children die each dayas a result of a lack of clean drinking water.
Once revered and worshipped for its life giving propertiesand as a symbol of purity, today water is mostly takenfor granted, and often wasted. How and when did we loseour spiritual connection to what is sometimes referredto as the medicine, and also oil, of the 21st Century?After all, we can survive without oil, but not withoutwater.
Is our relationship with water in need our nourishing?Undoubtedly, says Lawrence Ellyard in The Spiritof Water - The Hidden Message for all of us:The more we can begin to foster a relationship to wateras something sacred, the more this responsibility willbe engendered and, collectively, with increased awareness,we can not only improve the quality of water but alsoimprove the fair consumption of this precious resource."
Ellyard was trained by Masaru Emoto. Renowned for hisice crystal research and photography proving that waterreacts to positive and negative stimuli including wordsand phrases, images, sounds and even thoughts, Emotodescribed the subtle vibrational energy of the universeand all within it as hado, a Japanese wordmeaning wave or vibration.
Others have sought to explain, quantify and validatethis concept. First recognised by Christian Huygensin the 17th century through observing clock pendulums,the phenomenon of sympathetic resonance or entrainment(the law of attraction) proves that a resonating vibrationwill affect another vibration and cause it to respondat the same tone, level or frequency.
More recently, Deepak Chopra, in Power Freedom andGrace discusses the quantum universe and the "on/offswitch" for pulsing energy that permeates everythingand, in fact, creates our reality.
Emoto's ice crystal photography is compelling; theimages alternating between exquisitely beautiful, unsettlingand downright chilling. Backed by double blind experiments,it is impossible to ignore their implications. Waterexposed to positive words, images or music (for example,John Lennon's "Imagine") forms beautiful,structured crystals, while water exposed to negativestimuli (such as profane heavy metal music) either doesnot form crystals or displays distorted, fragmented,jagged ones.
"If our thoughts can do this to water, imaginewhat our thoughts are doing to us...to others and ourfragile world," says Ellyard, who believes hismentor's work has enormous implications. "We aremetaphorically at the tip of the iceberg and as we delvedeeper into the potential each one of us holds, we willlearn more about water and how we can collectively createpeace in our time. This is the true Spirit of Waterand the hidden message it holds for all of us."
Indeed, his book's title refers to the concept that"our consciousness or spirit can be imbued andcarried by water". In it, Ellyard underscores andadvances Emoto's findings by presenting methods forthe practical application of hado in our daily livesand how we may benefit ourselves, others and the planetthrough an attitude of positivism and gratitude.
"Most people agree that the ice crystal of loveand gratitude is one of the most beautiful and balancedformations. If the hado of love and gratitude can dothis to water, imagine what love and gratitude can dofor us. If we look at ourselves as constituted mostlyas water, aligning with the hado of love and gratitudeis a direct and positive way to raise our vibration.
"To thank water before we drink it and to feelgratitude for its life giving properties is an attitudewe all can share. It is from this place that we canonce again honour water and likewise ourselves. It isthis mind of gratitude which creates an impetus forchange," says Ellyard.
Strangely, while I always bless my food, it had neveroccurred to me to bless water, yet it makes spiritualsense. Water, like oxygen, is vital for life - and itis worth reflecting that water is, after all, composedof oxygen (and hydrogen).
By giving thanks for what sustains and nourishes us,we return positive energy (hado) to the collective consciousnessof the universe, thereby nourishing it and all withinit, ourselves included.
As such, I see Ellyard's conclusions as a metaphorfor how we relate to ourselves, each other, all livingorganisms, the world and the universe at large. Histimely, if controversial, message is compelling andinspiring.
Philosophical and practical in equal measure, The Spiritof Water ultimately cannot be ignored on a number oflevels - scientific, physiological and spiritual. WhileI feel the book would have benefited from reversingthe order of its two sections, and presenting the hadoand spiritual side before the drier (no pun intended)scientific side, it is truly a handbook for healingourselves, others and the planet.
In addition to describing the chemistry and propertiesof this vital and precious resource plus current issuesof pollution, scarcity, supply and usage, and placingwater in an historical and spiritual context, Ellyardreveals how it is affected by stimuli and adds practicaladvice on how to tap into its healing powers.
Of particular interest are the chapters on the sacredgeometry of the hexagon and number six in nature (and,therefore, religious and cultural symbolism), and thesignificance of this shape forming the heart of icecrystals (and also honeycomb cells).
Practical and useful topics include why we should filterwater both for consumption and bathing, storage of waterand why glass and ceramic is best, why drinking distilledwater (most soft drinks contain this) is not good foryou, and why we need to energise water, not merely purifyit, and how to do this easily and quickly.
As for companies cashing in on the ever increasingdemand for bottled water and the energy used to makeplastic containers, Ellyard is thought provoking: "Imaginehow dramatically the world would change if this sameamount of money was invested in cleaning up our watersources and creating sustainable sources of pure water."
The final chapter, "Practical Hado Exercises",offers meditations and affirmations. An accompany CDis available, narrated by Ellyard, which includes thehado water blessing meditation featured in his book.
In closing, Ellyard offers Emoto's Grand Invocation:"May the eternal energy of the universe by crystallisedin truth here and now, for the era of great harmonyhas come."
I'll drink (blessed) water to that.
The Spirit of Water - The Hidden Messagefor all of us
O Books RRP $A29.95