Several years ago my surfboard shaper shared with me why he believes riding a wave is such a special (and for many, metaphysical) experience. He described to me how waves actually begin as a pulse of energy thousands of miles away in the Earth’s atmosphere. How they enter into our weather system as wind, moving across the surface of the sea, how wind swell eventually builds into a ground swell which travels in deep ripples across vast expanses of ocean building in size and power, and how when a wave finally reaches the shoreline and rises to a curling peak… this is the culmination of a truly epic journey. To have the gift of meeting and riding this energy at the very climax of its existence is one of the things that makes surfing the magic experience it is.
Having grown up skiing in the mountains of Colorado, I had often contemplated the parallel journey of snowflakes en route to arriving as powder on the peaks. Only recently did I realize that these two epic journeys share one thing in common: the element of water.
In a recent conversation with the founder of Embercombe Tim ‘Mac’ Macarthy, I had the gift of listening to him share some of the many ways that our connection to the sacred element of water informs, inspires and activates our relationship to LIFE itself. The very way Mac shares and speaks of this element feels like being with him in the currents of a river – winding its way peacefully, powerfully from the mountains to the sea.
Tim ‘Mac’ Macarthy
The following are excerpts from our World Water Day interview (video below), in which Mac reflects upon his and all of our connection to the waters of life:
I would say that it is in us deeply to gravitate always to the element of water… There is no element that has quite the same capacity to delight and to terrify.
The great waters are always associated with our dreaming. We gaze to the horizon and over the oceans and in our imagination everything becomes possible.
It amazes me that when we look out into outer space and we dream of new lands and new planets, the first question always that we ask of this new place is: “Is there water?”
Water is in our myths and in our legends… From the north of Britain, the Celtic lands, the Selkies were a mythical water being. The Mermaids, the Kraken of Scandinavia… All of these call to us and have that same deep mystery of water.
Water, I think, is one of the four great powers of our world and seems so connected with our emotions, with our deep longing… We talk about the waters of life. Water sits at the very fountain head… The well head of our spiritual knowing.
When we gather and sing around water we are calling and singing to life.
We are singing to our cells and we are singing to every other part of life, and in that there is a great upwelling of joy.
There is a such a sense, I feel, growing around the world. We want to go home.
People of all nations, all creeds, all beings. All of our relatives in the animal world and in the plant world and in every other world. We circle our hands, and we will know, as we do it that we are part of one bigger circle. I am sure that will bring much joy to all of us, including me.