Grandmother water

During the nature immersion retreat I hosted yesterday, I sat for a long while with one of our winter creeks, listening.

The creek was quiet, requiring me to quiet myself in order to hear the sounds she was making. And in the process of trying to listen, I began to hear.

I didn’t realize how angry I was at grandmother water for the water damage we suffered to our house last week until I sat listening to that creek. 

It’s strange to notice that under the surface of ordinary reality, I have a deeply personal relationship with water. Apparently, water is a being who can soothe, cleanse, or piss us off, depending on the circumstance. 

It was a comforting revelation, actually. The anger demonstrated to me that some small part of me still remembers. Some part of me still relates to the elements as persons.

Despite my formal education, some part of me has remained connected to the more-than-human beings of this world, is in dialogue with them, and is capable of feeling the full range of feelings that arise within the context of our ongoing relationship. 

Sitting on a tree stump listening to the song of grandmother water yesterday, I was reminded of the power of humility, how water gets under and beneath things, like between the layers of flooring in a house. It’s unstoppable, really, that quality of humility.

With head bowed, my pace slowed, sitting still, I became a pupil of grandmother water at last. My anger cooled. 

Sitting there, listening, was grandmother water’s first lesson in humility. She likely has many more lessons for me in the months ahead.


This week, you are invited to journey to one of our elders–an element–for insight, learning, or healing. 

And, of course, you are always welcome to journey on whatever else might be most alive for you this week.


If you would like to join us this Wednesday, April 27, from 4-6 pm PDT, for Gaia Shamanism’s free weekly online journey circle, please email me at anna “at” gaiashamanism “dot” com.  

All skill levels are welcome.

Looking forward to seeing you this week!

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