Water is flexible, taking the shape of whatever vessel it flows into. It’s always interacting, changing, in motion, yet revealing continual patterns of connection. Water can be so expressive, a signal of our most heartfelt feelings. We cry tears of sorrow, tears of outrage, tears of gratitude, and tears of joy. Water can be puzzling, seeming weak or ineffectual, yielding too much, not holding firm. And yet over time water will carve its own pathway, even through rock. And yes, water freezes. But it also melts.
Real Change, p.15-16
These beautiful words, written by the Buddhist teacher Sharon Salzburg, use the image of water to describe life’s journey. Water as a metaphor easily illustrates our common humanity. Water is our life.
Each day I love to walk along the Menomonee River. It is an urban waterway flowing into Lake Michigan. At the moment the water is high and fast. Its movement drowns out the background hum of the city. I can walk along the bank and feel almost completely immersed the world of nature. It is both a solace and a delight.
Water is, of course required for our health and our hygiene. Most of us can’t imagine a life without easy access to water to meet our most basic needs.
Globally, over 3 billion people are at risk of disease because the water quality of their rivers, lakes and groundwater is unknown. A fifth of the world’s river basins are experiencing dramatic fluctuations in water availability. 2.3 billion people are living in countries categorized as “water-stressed,” including 721 million in areas where the water situation is “critical,” according to recent research carried out by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and partners.
March 22 is World Water Day. Take a moment to reflect on the big and the small ways water plays a role in your life. And then consider joining the conversation at:
Learn and share how to honor this valuable resource.