Be Like Water Taoism

Why is water compared to humanness?

Water is an essential part of life that any living thing needs. When thinking about water and the power it has to nature one has to accept that it is one of the most powerful resources on earth and that nothing will survive without water. According to Taoism water is soft but will yield anything living. Think about it, is there any living thing that could survive without water?

Even an air plant needs the water because their survival depends on the moisture that builds on their leaves. Given this thought we can imagine the flexibility of water and how it can take up space anyway that its available in nature. It makes sense to use water as a comparison to human life because we need to be more flexible and less rigid. Too often in this world it is our rigidity that brings us unwanted results in life.

How can I be like water in my life?

How does one become like water? The idea of being like water means, more flexibility with daily challenges that may come and accepting your immediate environment. The opposite of flexibility is rigidness and when a person is rigid they tend to put up a force against all energies that seem out of the ordinary.

Think of a stream and how it flows naturally and if an object moves into the stream through some kind of force the water takes a new path to move around this object. In the same exact image that object say a rock that is now in the force field of the stream. The rock being rigid stays exactly where it was placed and there is no moving around anything.

With this image in mind one can see how being rigid like the rock can create more calamity than like water. As a person life can be simpler if you move with changes as a first response. For example, if your space should change such as getting placed in a smaller office adapting to that space like the elements of water but as the rock often refusal to accept that space would create difficulty fitting into the new environment.

Seems like a really simple analogy but in reality it is a very important characteristic that one can have to make life more adjustable as we move through this world. So the way a person can be like water is to be more accepting of their immediate environment and instead of trying to stop change figure out a new route in that change.

How does water change?

Water does not change it adapts to the space it is given due to the softness of its nature. As a soft element of nature water does not need to continually change its composition it only needs to change the form it takes when the path is interrupted. In comparison to this idea think about a time when you were in a situation that you did not necessarily want.

For example, your marriage ends and now you’re forced with a situation that was not in the plan and it can’t be avoided. There are options and ways to stay stuck in this situation like that rock in the stream or move around the obstacle to find a new path. Now your genetic make has not changed but the ideas about your life has and choices are be rigid like the rock or soft like water.

This does not mean you become a doormat to a person that has broken their vows it just means there is a better path around that situation where the less pain is possible. Rigidity can create more pain in a situation where softness or acceptance can be more empowering. So again, water doesn’t change it takes a new form to adapt to the space it is given at any particular time on earth.

Can being like water overcome the hardness of life?

Some may feel being like water is allowing for situations to own you but as a person that has been both rigid and soft, softness has taken me down a much healthier path. Think about a snowflake and the gentleness of that flake. As it floats to the ground it will keep its form and if it lands on warmer ground it will adapt to that ground without any disruption to the life on the ground.

Now take large hail and if you have ever been in a hail storm they can be very destructive and even cause much damage due to the hardness or rigid surface of the hail. If given this situation which one would you prefer to have land on you? Living in New England, USA I would much rather have a snowflake hit my nose than the hail stone. Does this analogy really explain the question: can being like water overcome the hardness of life?

As an older person learning the difference between the two forms is very important. There are time when you need to be a little rigid in your life in order to set boundaries and limits around you. Being rigid with daily schedules is important in order to achieve our goals but if something should change in the schedule you need to have that softness to adapt to the change.

Overcoming the hardness of life is certainly easier with a form like water rather than the hardness of a rock. Having flexibility is very important to have successful days. It is the little things that will trip us up so when you are like water you will be able to move around the little things in order to keep moving forward

Will all this help to make me feel better?

I can only speak through experience on feeling better through a life of being like water. There is a number of videos and resources online about this idea. You can find information by searching philosophy, Taoism, Toltec wisdom, and so many other philosophies in this world to use as a foundation for feeling better about your life. 

This concept or should I say this analogy is form the philosopher Lao Tzu’s teachings on being like water. Spend time on philosophies that you are interested in and that will help you to feel better about life. Self-awareness is the biggest teaching that anyone can have to feel better about the surrounding environment.

Feeling better is an individual gauge and only you can decide what will help you to feel better about your life. You do have the power within to be happy and if you choice to be like water that path may move more freely on your path. The choice of tying all this together with Lao Tzu’s idea of being like water can definitely help your life to feel better.

If you are curious about some of the books on Taoism with Lao Tzu follow the link the below to view some of the books published by him.