My grandmother’s house on Dublin’s south coast sat on high bluff overlooking Dublin Bay and the Wicklow mountains.
The sloping grounds were carved into a seven stepped garden leading towards the ocean.
The second ‘step’ contained a frog filled lily pond which was a source of magical imaginings of frog and lily stories of transformation from tadpole to frog and spotless lotus petals where frogs sat croaking on saucer like pads.
Memories of this home are dominated with water’s movement, light reflection and constant color changes by way of Dublin’s ever-changing sky.
The parlor, a room with bay windows to this ocean view, became a ship at sea during storms; rain lashing against the widow panes as if the house were ploughing ship-like through the ocean.
Oh The Water, Van Morrison sings, “let it run all over me.”
In my Shamanic practices now I use the spirit of water for healing. Beginning with myself, every morning the glorious opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to Water. In the shower, making tea, washing a cup, cleaning my home.
In the African and South American traditions Water is called Oshun, after a kind of Lady of the Water. In Christianity Our Lady of Lourdes presides over the healing waters of Lourdes in France.
In Gaelic the word for water is uisce, uisce, a whispering sound which conjures up the sounds of water speaking her secrets.
A practice of my life and work is to use water as closely as possible to how she comes to us. Here in the juicy American NorthEast she is abundant. I filter my tap water into a small glass bottle which I carry to remind me ‘she has weight’…
Plastic bottles are one of the largest contributions to earth and water pollution. Plastic is also a known hormone mimic and is currently thought to be a carcinogen and factor in early onset of puberty in girls.
Native peoples call water Our First Medicine. Let us give her the attention She deserves.
Our bodies are water bodies. Our blood is 92% water. Our planet is 70% water.
Dear Water, we thank you for cleansing us, our children, and our elders. Thank you: For growing our food, for blessing us, and for giving us life.
Thank you a thousand times, dear Water. As we say in Gaelic: Go RAITH MILE MAITH AGAT.