Flow Through


The card FLOW THROUGH is about a way of experiencing emotions: being present, breathing, and allowing them the time and space to flow through you. Are there any feelings you hesitate to fully experience – like anger, pain, sadness, boredom, fear, or grief? How do you try to avoid them? Have you ever noticed that when you don’t let emotions flow through you, they stick around and clog you up?

A flowing stream can teach us much about how emotions naturally move. At times a stream runs shallow; at others, deep. Sometimes it is gentle and slow; sometimes it reaches the intensity of white-water rapids. Yet a stream just keeps moving, even over rocks. Constantly flowing, it soon returns home to the ocean. As it travels, it is a rich source of life and vitality to everything along its path.

The card FLOW THROUGH encourages you to let feelings flow. Feelings can move like water, and it’s best to let them keep flowing – not to hold on, hold back, or try to stop midstream. If you open your heart and invite feelings in, all will be safe. By not holding back, you won’t keep feelings dammed up inside of you. If you don’t push against them, they remain free to move and flow like water – all the way through.

How do you recognize when you are pushing against a feeling? One indication is that you try to solve emotional problems mentally. You might become engaged in reasoning, judging, comparing, criticizing, blaming, labeling, justifying, ruminating, or rationalizing. But what you are not doing is simply feeling.

FLOW THROUGH invites you to fully feel your emotions. Rather than staying in your mind, move your awareness down into your heart – and into your belly – to simply experience whatever you feel. Meet it. Accept it. Breathe deeply. And just feel it. Without words. Without the need for it to vanish or go away. Feel it as if it’s the only thing that exists. If feelings are a stream, then dive in and immerse yourself entirely! Bathe in their full experience – and be thoroughly cleansed!

This card is about allowing emotions the freedom to flow through your inner world. But how you act outwardly is quite another thing. You are responsible for expressing yourself in a constructive way – no matter what you feel! The freedom of flow discussed here is not about letting feelings gush out of you like water from a high-pressure fire hose, haphazardly spraying all over your partner.

Letting feelings flow freely in the presence of a partner can be healing – or it can lead to major turmoil! If your partner is willing and able to silently witness your feelings, it can be very healing, indeed. But beware of attaching any verbal labels, causes, reasons, or blame to what you feel. Try to leave all talk behind. Simply experience your feelings – without words. If you can’t do this, it might be more healing for you to feel your feelings in solitude – and talk again later.

As you fully experience feelings, you begin to appreciate their presence as friends. As they move and flow, often one feeling will lead to a different, deeper feeling. This may then lead to yet another, perhaps lighter, feeling. In this way, like a stream, the energy of emotion travels along its natural path.