5 Balancing Elements of Sacred Hot Springs
July 19, 2017
For thousands of years, we have recognized the deep healing powers of sacred waters. Hot springs offered a safe space for peace as unfriendly tribes crossed paths and a common appreciation for the transformative nature of hot springs. Both Orr Hot Springs and Sierra Hot Springs in California are these oasis – where the magic of tranquil waters, mystical landscapes and towering trees invite you to move and breathe from the heart. Now with their private stargazing tubs, saunas, communal baths and more, both are magical secrets that through each of the following healing elements keep us coming back.
FIRE (Agni, in Sanskrit)
To this day, we seek hot waters to dissolve our thoughts and melt our tension. The hot waters remind us of the warm, soothing environment of the womb, a feeling we all share. As we step into the mineral-rich pools that rise from the Earth’s core, with the fierce heat of Agni (fire), we’re embraced by Mother Earth herself, taken into her care and surrendering to her. We sink in and relax, opening up to her natural healing work. At play here is the energies of the goddess, Kali. Through the transformative power of heat, Kali destroys that which does not serve us, our inner demons, and welcomes release and re-birth. We sink into her fire and let ourselves soften into her fierce grace, and re-write our relationship with ourselves.
EARTH & MINERALS (Prithvi)
Open from the heat, we can absorb minerals and salts from the very rich waters that emanate from the Earth’s core. We’re grounded by these waters and reminded of our elemental nature. Hot springs are full of abundant minerals and vary from source to source. Waters high in calcium and magnesium may support the relaxation of muscles, similar to an Epsom salt bath, and have a long history of being considered sacred healing sources. Regardless, as we seek natural hot springs, we find ourselves in serene, epic landscapes that connect us to the beauty of nature and escape from the city.
As we immerse ourselves in relaxing waters, we’re also inherently disconnecting from other element of our routines and to-do lists. We’re stepping into the action of self care and giving ourselves time to slow down. Through this process, we tap into spaciousness, quiet and slow our breath bringing us closer to our balanced and grounded selves.
One of the beautiful qualities of water is it’s gift of weightlessness and ease. While our burdens feel heavy as we cary them around, when we step into pools of sacred waters, we’re given assistance and offered a reminder of what it is like to feel lighter. We offer our hardships to the water as she graciously carries them, even momentarily, and possibly invites them to dissolve.
The most subtle of the elements, ether, represents spaciousness and the essence of emptiness. Within the magic of hot springs, we are often reminded of the feeling of letting go, of releasing. Immersing ourselves in hot water is an invitation that cuts through the mind chatter and pain, and invites to focus on the water’s qualities of fluidity and quiet and to listen to the wisdom deep within ourselves.