If we simplified the complexity of the structure of the earth analogous to the complexity of human beings,our thoughts would be land and our feelings water.According to one Jill Bolte Taylor, although we would like to think of ourselves as thinking creatures that feel, biologically we are feeling creatures that think.Hence, this feeling creature that thinks, thinks that feelings are like water.

Assuming that feelings were water, one could argue that navigating through one’s feelings is like swimming.An empirical case against swimming could then be raised.Is it even necessary to swim? Will I ever have to swim to save my life? Haven’t there been greater fatalities from those who went swimming?

Our questions, or lack thereof, inform our beliefs. Some of us believe that it is better to stay away from the water.Others would like to test the water with their feet before they decide to go swimming while some believe in diving head first, even in shallow water.Once in the water;some people just float around, others swim close to the wall and some go all Phelps. Each with their own ways of navigating their waters.

An understanding of one’s waters (laughs cheekily at what sounds like a pregnancy joke)the waves, the tides, the currents, doesn’t guarantee an easy swim.Even seemingly great swimmers are capable of drowning.To the untrained eye, drowning looks like treading water. To the swimmer, it is helplessness, trying to get a hold of water.

Therefore, a most arduous task must be trying to navigate through the waters of others; on stranger tides.If we were concerned about the safety of swimmers, new waters would come with signs. Shallow waters, don’t dive. Too deep, don’t swim unless pro. Danger! strong currents.But even if waters came with signs, we would still go swimming.We would test the waters, we would dive. And in the face of high waves, we would struggle to remain afloat.

In the great calculus of life, it could be argued that there are multiple independent and dependent variables to solve the equation of water. If the world were fair, all things would align to make swimming a pleasant experience for us all. With all things constant-the weather and season just fine, our skill just right-we could float around without the fear of drowning.But the unfairness of the world is evident from the fact that even the good stuff like bacon, could eventually kill us.

And so the questions remain questions. How do we go through the task of navigating our waters in a highly uncertain and unpredictable world where we aren’t the best swimmers and the strange tides don’t come with signs? Should we remain on land? Isn’t spectating a gift by itself ? Shouldn’t we occasionally be permitted to be the audiences to our own lives? Should we learn to stay afloat or should know when to leave the water? And herein lies the problem of trying to solve an equation with too many variables, rationalizing the irrational and simplifying the complex.

“Water does not resist. Water flows. When you plunge your hand into it, all you feel is a caress. Water is not a solid wall, it will not stop you. But water always goes where it wants to go, and nothing in the end can stand against it. Water is patient. Dripping water wears away a stone. Remember that, my child. Remember you are half water. If you can’t go through an obstacle, go around it. Water does.”
 ― Margaret Atwood,


Water, redink
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