The depiction of water is the most striking part of the Ace of Cups, to me. Traditionally, the five streams of water represent the five senses — the means through which we engage and perceive the world around us. And water depicts the flow of emotions.
The senses are carriers of stimuli, moving us to feel different emotions. A life of fulfilment is one in which your senses can seamlessly lead the way, and you can follow unhindered.
When we think of emotions, we think of control. Almost as if our emotions cannot be trusted and must be overcome somehow. But what if you were to learn to approach emotions with lightness and ease, rather than the hardness of control?
By learning to feel, by watching our emotions, allowing the full gamut of insights they offer about what we’re making of the world and our experiences, we may learn some of the most crucial facts about who we are as individuals and what makes us tick.
The idea of being “detached” is often associated with being free of emotion. When in fact being detached could very well be a state of being so in tune and at ease with feeling every one of our emotions, there ceases to be any need to control them. And life then flows. Just like water.
I’m thinking of Bruce Lee’s famous words today: “Be water, my friend.”
He speaks of finding flow, when he says, “Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put it into a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow, or creep, or drip, or crash.”
Water, like our emotions, is soft, yet powerful. Soothing, yet impactful — depending on how it is wielded.
Just for today, if you allow yourself to feel an emotion you usually push aside, what might you learn about yourself? Which emotion do you most need to soften up for at this present moment?