Moving With the Water

«I went through the forest by myself and looked for nothing. That was my purpose.» This is how Goethe describes walking unintentionally and shows what nature has in store for fruit.

Anyone who moves so lost in thought travels between half a meter and one meter per second, and, like the heart, they take 70 steps a minute. It’s different if the steps follow a goal: the walk to the car, mailbox, or refrigerator. Then it can be 2 to 2.5 meters per second and 140 steps per minute. If you walk along a river, you have probably noticed yourself: water flows as fast as we walk. The Humboldt Current near Chile or the Benguela Current near Namibia moves at half a meter per second, while the Gulf Stream flows to Europe at 2.5 meters per second, which is the same for the Rhine, for example. What does that mean? Whoever strides or walks moves at the pace of the water, being of the earth. The feeling that walking brings us into a cosmic state, which is reflected in hundreds of ritual cultic encounters of all religions, is not deceptive. And one step further: Why does the water flow? Because it is warmed by the sun. Its flow is the earthly answer to the warmth of the sun. Walking connects us not only with the water, the blood of the earth, but also with the sun, the heart of the cosmos. So it is not surprising that walking happens in the rhythm of the human heart and faster walking in the pulse of the fundamental arterial vibration of the heart. When we walk or stride, we arrive in the broader context, allowing us to hear the language of nature that Goethe went on to write about.

Title image François Croissant
Translation Monika Werner

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