wildcraft perspectives: water

Copied directly from the Embercombe blog

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Life is made from and sustained by water. Without it we would last just days. Clean water would seem like a human right but in reality it is a luxury that over a billion people struggle to gain access to with over a quarter of the world population with inadequate sanitation: leaving them fighting for life itself. We have gone, and will go, to war over water. It quenches us and our lands. Without it there would be just a barrenness from which no seed could sprout. Water has shaped our landscape from the tallest mountains to the deepest valleys.

Knowing how to find water in the landscape, to make it drinkable and safe from pathogens and contaminants and to transport it enables us to travel further in the wilderness. Water lubricates our joints, aids our thought processes, helps our sight, keeps us cool, enables us to digest and release energy from our food to keep warm. Water not only shapes the landscape but it shapes us.

We teach ‘water’ on Wildcraft because such an important commodity should never be taken for granted – even what is hidden in the smallest drop. It is important to understand how dehydration can cut short more than just your enjoyment in hot aswell as cold climates, how unclean water can limit your ability to exist and how the animals, insects, plants and even the shape of the land can give you important clues as to the location of this precious life-giver – even underground.

For us on Wildcraft we drink water, wash with it, shelter from it, cook with it, stand among the trees that grow in it and rejoice it: we spend time listening to the rushing brook, marvelling at the primordial soup that forms a sluggish pool and give thanks to the trickle of rain that drops from leaf into cupped hand.

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