A few days ago, a river in New Zealand was granted the status of a person. Soon, Ganga and Yamuna were granted the status of people. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/mar/21/ganges-and-yamuna-rivers-granted-same-legal-rights-as-human-beings
While it remains to be seen what this decision will mean in terms of protecting the rivers, it feels like a step in the right direction. But what I am going to say here, is completely against so called social thought.
A few days ago, while I was washing dishes and felt guilty about the running tap, I felt the water ask me what I was guilty about. What it told me was not what I was ready to hear. Since forever the relationship between water and human beings has been an existential one. Human beings simply cannot survive without water. But we have evolved in a way that rather than treating water , air and everything that we need for our survival , as a sacred and precious resource, we use everything as though it has been created just for us.
While there are fabulous people, conscious of how indebted we are to nature, working to save, protect it from destruction, there is something we have all overlooked. As I washed the dishes that day, I felt the water ask me why it was dammed. Why was it wrong for it to flow to the ocean? That it was as necessary for the birds and animals in the oceans and earth to have this fresh influx of water every year and that water belong to all and not just humans. I felt the water ask me to speak about this and write about this. I didn’t. Not till now, a year later.
I was disturbed by what I heard. For much part of my life, I have been saving water, protecting water, conserving water, talking to family and others about using less water. Use buckets, don’t shower, don’t waste water, soon we won’t have water. Everything that was used in popular environmental discourse was part of my vocabulary. Till I realized that there were things I didn’t understand. When I looked it was all scientific and confusing. But from the little I understood, it is as intricate as the connection between life and water. Increasing salinity in ocean water, global warming and meting icecaps which reduce salinity in some parts of the ocean, climate change, temperature, … there are so many facets to this. What really happens when there is an increase or decrease of fresh water into the oceans? Have you thought about that?
Humans need water to survive. But rivers and rain don’t exist solely for mankind. The creation of large dams is not just about displacing humans, it is about believing that water is just a resource for humans, and not meant for earth and all its inhabitants. We can drink water and store it but we can’t damm water, one way or the other. The issue of conserve water because we humans need it is not the right mindset.
Before someone gets this wrong, this is not about leaving taps open and letting water run. This is about looking at water pollution, this is about looking at water conservation in a way that begins to understand that every river is an entity, with her right to go where she wants and help whom she wants, without us dumping our crap on her, without us damming her. And, we shouldn’t have had to wait for courts to tell us that.
For those interested in deepening their connection to water, a simple thing would be to say the H’o’ ponopono . You simply say, ” I am sorry. Please forgive me. I love you. I thank you. ” Do this before you drink water. Before you bathe. While you do dishes. When you water plants.
For work on how water affects our internal energies look up Masaru Emoto’s work.