Lao Tzu: Muddy water–let stand–becomes clear

Muddy Water

let stand

becomes clear

–Lao Tzu

Since January, I’ve been studying water from a depth psychological perspective in my Ecopsychology: The Ethics of Place class with Dr. Ed Casey.

Among a score of other works, we read  Bachelard’s  Water and dreams, which I found truly magical, almost mystical. The prose is poetic, dreamy:

“…for the materializing imagination, death associated with water is more dream-like than death associated with earth: the pain of water is infinite” (p. 6).

This reminds me of Louise Erdrich’s novel Love Medicine –the chapter “The Red Convertible” where Henry drowns in the rive and his brother Lymon pushed the red convertible into the river so he will have company and conveyance in his infinite limbo.

“a continuity between the speech of water and the speech of man …thus water will appear to us as a complete being with body, soul, and voice” (Batchelard p. 15)

Later, Batchelard talks about Narcissus, and from the reading (p. 21) and class discussion, I see how the computer is like a mirror, like water, and it reminds me of my poem, art installation,  and broadside  “The Tattooed Lady” which perhaps I’ll reblog here…

Here are a few more quotes that I liked from Batchelard

“Thus water is the gaze of the earth” (p. 31)

“What one drinks in a dream is an infallible clue to the nature of the dreamer” (p. 124)

“Liquidity is…the very desire of language. Language needs to flow” (p. 187)

“The letter ‘A’ marks a primary matter. It is the first letter of the universal poem. It is the letter that stands for the repose of the soul in Tibetan mysticism” (p. 189)

Aum—the  sound of the first chakra, of Lord Ganesha, the remover of obstacles…

“I know not the first letter of the alphabet” writes H. D. Thoreau. “Where I Lived and What I Lived For”

More from my Depth Psychology studies as I find time to share my insights and highlights.

PS Not everyone can go live in India and study with Tibetan masters for years, like fabric thangka artist Leslie Rinchen-Wongmo. So, at the urging of students, she invented a way to transmit ancient tradition through modern technology. She’s created a supportive community of stitching buddhas who once a year,  gather in person so they can work with her directly, taking their skills to a new level and their understanding to a new depth. And this is the week that they are gathering! f you think you might like to become a Stitching Buddha yourself, read this page and get in touch. Here’s a blog post she wrote about last year’s Stitching Buddhas Retreat.

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