There is something calm, cool, and contemplative about water – from a still puddle to the shifting ocean. And accordingly, poets, spiritualists, and writers from antiquity to the modern era have found limitless inspiration in so many waves, ripples and reflections.

Here are some Zen inspired thoughts from across the ages on water, and its ability to bring clarity and peace to the human mind.

Silence reveals our true nature.

“We cannot see our reflection in running water. It is only in still water that we can see.” – Zen Saying

Deep inside we know this – all is connected.

“All know that the drop merges into the ocean but few know that the ocean merges into the drop.” – Kabir

When the ego vanishes, the self appears.

“The wave is free when it realizes it is part of the sea.” – Zen Saying

Each one of us is something greater than ourselves.

“How should men know what is coming to pass within them, when there are no words to grasp it? How could the drops of water know themselves to be a river? Yet the river flows on.” – Antoine Saint-Exupery

The essence of humanity is contained in every human life.

“In one drop of water are found all the secrets of the oceans.” – Kahlil Gibran

Water reminds us, all shall pass in time.

“Limitless and immortal, the waters are the beginning and end of all things on earth.” – Heinrich Zimmer