India is a remarkable, diverse, vibrant country that I come across frequently in my exploration of the elements. It is a country that has developed philosophies, arts, medicine and sciences that use the elements as fundamental building blocks. Earth, air, fire, water, ether/sky – and consciousness – are abundantly expressed. So far I have touched on Praktri, mudras, Vastu Shastra (embedded in various posts), Ayurveda (ditto), Vikram Seth and other references to the elements in India. These posts draw on a range of books written by Indian and other authors. On a more immediate and intimate level the blog ‘Enchanted Forests‘ written by Mukul Chand has opened up a whole other world of India, and the elements.
The Rivered Earth contains four libretti written by Vikram Seth, a celebrated Indian novelist and poet, designed to be set to music by Alec Roth. The final libretti is called ‘Seven Elements’. It is a song cycle that includes seven poems – Earth, Air, Wood, Fire, Metal, Water and Space.
I just LOVE serendipity, coincidence, being in the right place at the right time, synchronicity – whatever you like to call it. It happens to me quite a lot, particularly in relation to the intuitive elements. Today was no exception.
In my research on the elements I’ve mentioned that I like to scan the shelves of shops that sell second hand books. It can be surprising what you discover and where it leads you. For example, this is where I found the book that featured in the post ‘What is Air?’
The gem that I found today was called ‘Ox-tales Water’, published in 2009. It is one of four-original collections of short stories by ‘remarkable writers’ that Oxfam has created based on the four elements: water, fire, earth and air.