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We are Water

December 19, 2018
river rocks

We are Water

Water is fundamental to survival - it is one of the most important shared resources for and by all and relies on our collective care.

Water is elemental.  It is made up of one oxygen and two hydrogen atoms bonded together. It comes in three forms (gas, solid and liquid) all mutually supporting the other. Expressed another way, it comes from the air (gas) and returns to the earth (solid) and in-between it drenches (liquid). 

Water is essential to our quality of life. It is the foundation for universal health and wellbeing. I know for myself, I cherish water.  So much so we built a little cabin in the woods where we are surrounded by pristine water sheds, lakes, rivers and streams. It has been and is a backdrop for ritual, tradition, passion, rest and recreation. It is my recovery. It is my spiritual medicine. It is my emotional connection with the world.

Water is sacred. From the moment we are conceived to the time of delivery we are in and part of water.  It nourishes, cleanses, transports, creates and restores life. It is the ancient force connecting all and nourishing everything in its path. There is no substitute for water. It moves around, through, in and beyond all. It is a gift requiring our attention and devotion.

Water is fragile and makes evident the care it receives (or not). Water can be easily taken for granted, wasted and misused, polluted and destroyed.  It is our common knowledge and provides the opportunity for compromise, cooperation and celebration. It is our beginning and end.

Actions you can take to conserve water:

1.Replace older toilets with a WaterSense labeled high efficiency toilet. Older toilets can use 4 times more water per flush.

2.Regularly check for & repair leaks.  Even small leaks can waste hundreds to thousands of gallons of water a month.  Many leaks can be fixed by a do-it-yourself plumber, and repair parts are relatively inexpensive to purchase ($5-20).

3.Wash only full loads. The average American household uses about 23% of its water running the clothes and dish washer. 

4.Let your dishwasher do the work. An average dishwasher uses about 10 gallons per load. Running the average faucet for just four minutes uses the same amount of water.

5.Take shorter showers. Each minute you shave off your shower time saves up to 2.5 gallons.

6.Install a high efficiency showerhead, and you could save an about 1 gallon per minute.

7.Install an aerator on your bathroom or kitchen faucet and save about 1 gallon per minute. An aerator reduces the flow from the faucet, and uses air to maintain good water pressure.

8.Turn the faucet on only to rinse when brushing your teeth, washing your hands or shaving. You will save up to 2.5 gallons a minute.

9.Know where your master water shut-off valve is located. This could save water and prevent damage to your home.

10.Select an Energy Star-approved clothes washer next time you purchase a new washer.  They use 15-20 less gallons of water per load, and you will see savings on your energy costs too.

Taken from conserveh20.org

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Mandala is a biannual magazine produced by Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing. It captures the core aspects of the Center: reflection, transformation, spirituality, creation, and the ongoing journey that continues to shape what we are to become.

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The Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing blog covers a range of integrative health and wellbeing topics. For more information about our blog, contact us at csh@umn.edu