Summer has arrived! Here in Arizona we had incredible weather in June which fooled me a little into thinking that the summer heat might not be that bad… but of course it is July in Arizona so these 100+ degree days are no surprise. It is so curious to me the way we are drawn to water when the temperatures rise. Yes, it can be cooling, yet it feels deeper than that, magnetic in a way. Early morning on the 4th of July the Baldwin Trail parking lot was filling up as people from all over came to Oak Creek to spend the holiday on the water. It is really quite magical. The dragonflies, butterflies, birds and minnows playing with each other, the sunlight dancing off the surface of the creek, the gentle sound of the water flowing over the rocks, children laughing, dogs wading, people of all ages and backgrounds gathering with a bright playful energy. Some of my fondest childhood memories are of going to the beach in the summer. I could spend days building sandcastles and exploring for shells and starfish, it brought such joy! And, if the day ended with a thunder storm to break the heat and wash clean the grit of the day that was a special bonus. Even now as I plan our summer vacation I keep modifying it to make sure we can be near water, lakes, oceans and rivers are all on the itinerary. Being near water can invoke a deep feeling of awe. Vast expanses of ocean, monsoon rains, roaring rivers, shrinking reservoirs all trigger a reaction as our human senses attempt to comprehend what we are witnessing. Our bodies are drawn to it as a survival instinct with over 50% of our blood volume being made up of water. There is a lot of press about challenges with our water supplies. Scarcity and contamination are real concerns not only in the arid Southwestern US, but globally. The challenges may seem daunting and beyond the reach of most people to resolve. Of course there are steps we can all take to help including water conservation, water recycling and eliminating toxic chemicals from our homes. And, what if there were something even simpler, that you could do in a few minutes each day and that also was beneficial to your health and wellbeing? What if practicing water mindfulness and appreciation could heal our water systems? It may sound a bit "woo woo", to use our intentions and gratitude to impact environmental change. Yet, why not try? I strongly believe that this is too big for the governments of the world to effect. We have the laws, systems and technologies yet they are all disjointed and disconnected from the population at large. I believe that human connection and appreciation is the critical ingredient to turn the tides. To test this I am creating an online presence dedicated to all that we find awesome about water and I am inviting all of you to play along. The goal is simple, to provide a way for everyone to feel more connected to water, and to connect with each other by sharing these experiences with others. Joining in is easy if you have an Instagram account (more to come later if you do not). Simple post a picture related to water that brings you joy or awe, and tag @waterawe in the post. The @WaterAwe Instagram site will become our shared collection of those images or videos. If you want to share a key word or location that’s great. The intention is to encourage us all to take just a moment of water mindfulness to shift the energy from fear to appreciation and love. And who couldn't benefit from that. We have a few events this month, with more planned for August and into the fall including on-line class options for those of you who can't practice with us in person regularly. Take a look at our events page for more information. Thank you all for continuing to follow us and be part of our community, we appreciate you.
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