When you hear the saying “go with the flow,” it can mean several things. Someone can be suggesting you relax. Or maybe someone has plans they want you to follow without resistance. Or possibly you are whitewater rafting and going with the flow of the currents is imperative.
But flows can come in many flavors and frequencies. Is going with the flow always a good thing? What are the different kinds of flows?
Astrology, once again, provides the symbolism and energy behind the saying.
There are four elements in astrology:
- Fire – Aries, Leo, Sagittarius
- Earth – Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn
- Air – Gemini, Libra, Aquarius
- Water – Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces
To understand the flow of each element, you simply consider it in the natural world.
Going with the flow
Fire is a flow that moves quickly and leaves ashes in its wake. Fire is the spirit of things and those going with the flow of fire are drawn to the issues of the times and are its leaders or highly-active participants. Fire is active and involved, it is not an observer. Fire is strong and can overpower the other elements at times.
Earth is the element that doesn’t “flow,” except in very light form such as sand. Earth needs the other elements to flow as it’s grounded and steady. With fire, it becomes lava and flows after erupting. With air, it can be transported as sand or cause erosion. With water, it can become fluid as mud or detritus.
Air flow is constant and changing. Air is social and intellectual. Air moves with the energies of the day which has its own, natural flow. Air (like fire) can’t truly be contained and needs to move to be healthy and alive. Air, like water, can pick up the contaminants in the path of its flow.
Water flow is powerful as we see with the carving of the Grand Canyon and tsunamis that wipe out villages. Water flows naturally from high to low and like air is as pure and fresh as its surroundings. As such, it is highly-sensitive to the environment. Water, unlike fire and air, is more easily contained; but when contained, can become stagnant.
Go with the flow?
In the purest form, going with the flow of any element is the merging of self with life as it is. Each element represents an energy we direct toward life: the inspiration and “aliveness” of fire; the social and intellectual world of air; the shelter and security of earth; the emotional and imaginative connection of water.
Yet we share life with others and elements are exploited and tainted for control. Fire is directed toward negative causes; air is tainted with negative ideologies; earth is used to bind and control; water is used to sway and manipulate.
As with the natural elements, going with the flow is a good thing. But first, always check the purity of your elements!