Water – The Forgotten Superhero


     Anyone who has read a Marvel comic book or seen a Marvel film knows that the world these stories contain are filled with unique beings –good and bad—that have luckily stumbled across a unique set of  powers.  Often these heroes/heroines and villains are portrayed as ordinary people who secretly harbor  special gifts enabling them to fly, move objects with their minds, or heal themselves after being dealt fatal injuries.  

      Yet the ones who’ve always intrigued me were those who could control the natural elements: earth, fire, metal, wood, water.   We often see heroes and villains alike, harnessing fireballs or creating streams of fire (e.g. “The Human Torch” from Fantastic Four or “Pyro” from X-Men).  But we hardly ever see those who control water.  Sure we’ve had “Iceman” and “Storm”, thanks to the X-men series, but when will we find a hero that often uses water in its many different states? 

   Being the nerd that I am, I started to create arguments in my mind as to why there should be more superheroes and villains that can control water and why they would dominate.                        





     Back to Chemistry 101! Water can take many different forms: solid, liquid, gas.  (i.e. “ice”, “rain”, “steam” for those who failed chemistry).    Water is not only extremely versatile, but it is powerful.  Remember the damage done by Hurricane Katrina or the Tsunami in Bali? And that’s just the damage done upon impact.  We often forget about the days, weeks, months and even years of residual damage that is caused by Water.  It tends to leave an ugly crime scene to include things like mold, rust, rot and sheer destruction.  Sometimes Water acts as a silent assassin that patiently awaits in the shadows.  Ever see a Dam break? Ask the Iowa residents near Lake Dehli about the effects that Water can have over purportedly tough cement rock.

      Nevertheless, what makes Water really unique is that while it can kill, it can also “heal”. This assertion led me to really think about water in the context of our realities as everyday people and as healers.  Water is often the cure all for many conditions that we believe we need pills, medication and even surgery for.  Water cleanses, lubricates, nourishes, and it allows us to build our yin –that energetic place within ourselves that allows us to rest, find peace and build the deep reservoirs of energy within our bodies.

      “Will”, “power” and “truth” are words often used to characterize water from a spiritual perspective.  This makes sense if you think of waves from the ocean washing upon rocks. 




      Over time the “will” and “power” of the ocean water wears away the rock.  Also, the water washes away debris and seaweed from the rock to show the “truth” of the rocks appearance.   A healthy yin and Water element within us can allow us to persist and overcome obstacles.  It can give us truth and thus courage, when we would otherwise need reassurance.

The late Professor J.R. Worsley, who was one of the pioneers to bring the study of Classical Five Element Acupuncture to the U.S., once stated: 


      “We tend to underestimate the importance of the Water Element, exactly as we in the West tend to take for granted the physical substance water which is all around us…In recent years, however, the climate has been far less predictable…Suddenly that certainty, that absolute assurance that we can have water literally on tap, has been taken away, and people have become apprehensive and fearful.  For some people it is almost too enormous a prospect to take in, the unthinkable prospect that they cannot do something as simple as drinking, preparing food, or washing.”


    As everyday health conscious people, it is important for us not overlook water and its abilities.  It can help us improve digestive issues, keep the largest organ of our body healthy and vibrant –our skin-, and it can help our joints.  Pondering the spirit of Water can also help us navigate the troubled waters of our daily lives.

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