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The Relationship Between Water and Trees
About ten days ago, the big story here in California was the announcement of extreme drought here, and in particular here in Sonoma County, where Larry and I live.
For me, this is not unusual, but this year seems to be particularly bad. We had hardly any rain over the winter and, in fact, we have had hardly any rain for the past four years we have been living here.
I remember as a child huge storms. And as an adult, I experienced storms so heavy that trees came down and creeks flooded. Last weekend we drove by Nicasio Reservoir, where Larry used to go fishing when he was a kid, and it was...empty. Larry and I both know this reservoir well. I used to live out there and frequently drove past it. Usually, it is fairly full. Last weekend it just looked like a field with puddles. Really.
Most people see this as a problem of Nature and consider that we humans have nothing to do with it. But we do.
Water Needs Trees
For there to be water, there needs to be trees.
Way back in 1987, I gave a lecture at a natural food store about toxics in consumer products.
Afterward, a man I didn’t know came up to me and said, “I think you would like to read this book.”
He handed me a photocopy of a book called Living Water: Viktor Schauberger and the Secrets of Natural Energy, which at that time was not in print in the United States.
[That evening, also, a friend of mine came to the lecture and introduced me to Larry, so it was quite a night!].
I was immediately drawn to read Living Water, which described a scientist’s observations of water in its natural state. The water’s cycle from the Earth to the atmosphere and back is somewhat more complex than the water-comes-down-as-precipitation-and-evaporates-back-up-to-the-sky version we all learned in science class.
In the full cycle, according to Schauberger, the water falls to the Earth as precipitation, drains through the soil (rapidly cooling while sinking deeper and deeper) until it reaches a certain level (I’m leaving out the technical parts here), and then begins to rise, warmed by the Earth’s heat. During this rise, the water is vitalized with various metals, salts, and gases, and bubbles to the surface as a spring.
The full cycle can take place only where there is appropriate vegetation cover (such as a forest) to allow the rain to penetrate deeply. [I could not find one image on the internet of this cycle, yet there were many that showed runoff from the land going back into the ocean.
This made perfect sense to me, and as I was reading, I began to have a sinking feeling that the most healthful, energizing, optimal water we could possibly drink wasn’t going to come from any of the water-purification devices that I had been recommending in my books.
At that time, the best we could do with water-purification devices was to remove pollutants from contaminated water. “We can’t make optimum water,” I thought. “Only Nature can do that.” (Since water purification has improved tremendously and my favorite PureEffect Water Filter contributes to bringing tap water closer to its natural state in addition to removing pollutants.)
Suddenly I saw that to take actions that destroy the ability of the Earth to provide its abundant natural gifts for us and then try to protect ourselves from our own destructive actions by making an artificial life, just doesn’t work. I saw that we were literally destroying the planet out from under ourselves. It wasn’t just that others, such as factories spewing toxic pollution, were harming the environment—I was doing it every day, in almost every action I took.
It was at that moment that I made the first shift from being concerned only about my own welfare to understanding that I can't be alive and healthy without the life support of the planet. On a deeper level, my whole outlook on life changed: I went from feeling isolated, defensive, and fearful, to wanting to experience connection, cooperation, openness, and love.
After this realization, I yearned to drink water from a natural spring, but where would I get that water?
Though spring water is sold in glass and plastic bottles, by the time water from a spring gets into a bottle it has gone through miles of pipe and filtration. So it's no longer in its "natural" state.
My wish to drink spring water was soon fulfilled. I learned that the town of Mt Shasta, California, has a public spring when one of my clients brought me a bottle of water from that source. Read more about this spring and others here.
So wherever you live, do what you can to plant trees, and keep the trees that already exist. Tree are not only vital for reducing carbon and providing oxygen but they are also needed for our water supplies. Here in Sonoma County we have lost many trees as orchards are being converted to vineyards, and we are now seeing the consequences.