Friday, August 5, 2011


Several years ago I learned a simple, practical, yet profoundly beautiful prayer technique that has blessed me more times than I can memorably recount. The only two things needed for this spiritual practice is an open heart and a flowing stream. As I spent the past few weeks in the mountains of southern Oregon I encountered several flowing streams which allowed me to bring my consciously open heart into communion with these large and small watery tributaries. The technique is most effectively utilized when a bridge is spanning the bed of the flowing water to provide a middle of the flow vantage point, though I have also prayed a stream from the side of its bank. The practice goes as such; begin by facing the down stream movement of water and simply behold the water as it cascades down the bed and around the natural obstacles that almost always are a part of a flowing stream. Lightly and spaciously allow the awareness to also include all that has already occurred in your own personal life experience. All of the history to include relationships, challenges, triumphs, health and body factors, situations, education, milestones, etc. Just allow for a full awareness of the actual movement of the stream in all of its dynamic motion, and equally all of the dynamics of your life as it has moved through and as you. When you feel thusly inspired, allow your focus to move to the upstream position, and begin to watch the moving water as it comes toward you. See too that is moves over and around natural obstacles and that these give added dynamic to the movement of water. As you take in the advancing of the stream, include an expectancy of what may be coming to you in terms of future experience. See how open and flowful you feel regarding what may be seeking to come forth as you. Watch the water as it pushes into a rock or limb. Watch the splashing that ensues, and also the continuing forward movement. Watch and intimately feel the flowing of the stream, and attend in a caring and spacious way to what wants to flow through you as a vital and dynamic energy system. Ask to be shown anything that you need to see, and let the stream teach you of flowfulness and forward movement. Let the stream teach you of ever moving life.

Whether you live in a region that has flowing streams and rivers or not, the natural flowing movement of water is a powerful teaching tool that is transcendent of the mind and inclusive of all that wants to flow. Life flows naturally when we dwell in non-resistance and heartful openness. It is our judgments of what is occurring that stifles the flow of what is meant to move through us. There will always be obstacles and challenges. Thinking that we can control our way out of these is infantile. Obstacles are not enemies. They add to the dynamism of life in this human realm. When we allow for the energetic relationship to these obstacles to flow easily and naturally, emotional contraction becomes a friend and not a dreaded foe. It is emotional resistance that congests the flow of life. It is the thought that life should be different than it is that dams the flow. Life is an ever moving stream. Trying to stop the forward movement is futile at best and diseasing at worst. There is an infinite flow of life that is moving within and through you. It is cascading from you as your past and flowing through you as what is yet to be. And you remain on the bridge of present moment awareness, fully experiencing the flowfulness of the life that is you. You witness what has been and remain expectant of what will be.

We are each invited to remain in the flow of life. There is ease in the flow. There is peacefulness in the flow. Even when the waters of our being are crashing upon the rocks and limbs of life’s obstacles we are invited to stay open and to allow for the flow of a Life that is far wiser than our resistant surface selves. Stay in the flow. Let life stream through you. Feel the movement now. You are the water. You are the bed. You are the obstacles and you are the flow. You are life. Let be and let flow.