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SUMMER
Zeit.los Magazin

von Zeit.los Magazin

April 10, 2021

SUMMER

Eternally effervescent elixir of life: Akiko Stein and the source of the Isar River

The source of the Isar has always been a very special water place. From the Middle Ages, the effect of the water was revered as sacred and recently it has become visible. Akiko Stein has photographed the water in her special way. The water crystal of the Isar spring sparkles full of energy.

A beginning full of magic

Its journey is as long as it is turbulent, as eventful as it is exciting, as sparkling as it is alive. Lively is a magic word for the journey of the Isar water from its source to the Danube and on to the Black Sea. The variety of this route is beyond the scope of any travel guide, as this water connects countless places and also peoples in a magical way. At the beginning it is pure nature through which the Isar ripples. In the Hinterautal, the untouched valley in the middle of the Karwendel, the water from three springs meets to flow together as the Isar. It is a tranquil cradle at the foot of impressive peaks - fitting somehow for the fourth largest river in Bavaria after the Danube, Inn and Main, which learns Tyrolean well on its first 22 kilometers. It starts at an altitude of 1,162 meters, and that's how many meters of altitude each drop of water is allowed to cover before it reaches the sea, of course. Here, the Isar is still a torrent that flows along stormily and merrily.

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The true origin of the Isar

There is an age-old dispute between the inhabitants of Scharnitz, to whose municipality the Hinterautal belongs, and the inhabitants of the municipality of Absam, in whose municipality the Lafatscherbach rises - above the Hallerangerhaus it sets off in the direction of the Hinterautal. Where is the true origin of the Isar? This is the prize question, the answer to which is in favor of the Hinterautal, among other things because the Lafatscherbach does not always carry water. The Isar doesn't care. Water doesn't care about Gretchen questions or borders, such as the one between Tyrol and Bavaria. The Isar also knows how to overcome these splendidly in order to briefly collect itself in the Sylvensteinsee before the journey continues.

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Blazing speed

Up to this point, it has been a nature experience. But now the drops from the source of the Isar River will soon be setting off on a kind of urban and European journey. And at breakneck speed. Bad Tölz is "taken along", then Munich, Freising or Landshut, in Deggendorf the Isar joins the Danube after 292 kilometers and continues through Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania, the Republic of Moldova and finally the Ukraine. Everywhere, no matter in which language the invigorating water is named, the original drops leave their mark. Finally, they reach the Black Sea, another station in the eternal cycle. From the source of the Isar in the Hinterautal to the Black Sea, a drop of water takes just three days to travel. It is possible that one or the other returns to the Karwendel as a raindrop to rest and mature in the karstic limestone for well over ten years, only to spring forth again powerfully.

"The journey of the river is like that of a human being. Sometimes the water experiences injuries, its knowledge is enriched, life is constantly changing and it is never the same. We can never touch the same water in the same place of the river. But where the primal source rises, the water contains the primal energy," Akiko Stein draws a beautiful parallel and leads back to the origin - the source of the Isar, which inspires the Japanese-born artist.

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Stone Cairns in the Karwendel

Akiko stone: crystal photography

Akiko Stein dedicates her life to water. The information it contains, the message and healing power it contains, as well as the universal beauty that she knows how to show through crystal photography. To do this, she fills water drop by drop into bowls and lets it freeze at minus 25 degrees Celsius. At minus 5 degrees Celsius, she then photographs the resulting water crystals in 200x magnification. In this way, the secrets of water become visible - the crystal shows, for example, whether the water is low in energy or rich in energy, whether it has been distilled or not, whether it contains "completely normal" information or strong, positive information.

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Crystal Photography by Akiko Stein

The method of water crystal photography was developed by her teacher and mentor Masaru Emoto, whose findings about the wave motion of water or the fact that water can store and transmit information, that it responds to words and loves harmony, caused a worldwide sensation. Akiko Stein honors the work of her teacher, who died in 2014, and continues it in her own way on several levels. Among them is the Emoto Peace Project, a United Nations (UN)-supported peace project for children that uses water science as a playful way to awaken in them an understanding of the peaceful and harmonious coexistence of all life.

Children workshops with Akiko Stein

A boy from Seefeld was present at a peace workshop in Innsbruck. He was enthusiastic and wanted Akiko Stein to come to his hometown as well. So one drop led to another - and they made waves. "It was a harmonious, easy development," Akiko Stein recalls. "His mom organized the first children's workshop in Seefeld, then the town organized a lecture. Finally, the idea of photographing the water of the Isar's source came up.""At this special spot of earth, which is sacred not only to the Bavarians, it doesn't take much concentration to feel the energy." No matter if the way to the Isar spring, which is also called "by the rivers", is done on foot or by bike: this virgin Isar bubbling between the moss cushions is the most beautiful reward.

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"In everything that is alive there is water".

Akiko Stein

Akiko Stein

Water is also constantly transformed in the human body. The brain, for example, consists of up to 90 percent water, organs up to 85 percent, bones around 22 percent. And even the teeth contain 10 percent of this miracle substance, which, despite all the scientific quantum leaps, has still not been properly researched. The anomalies of water cannot be explained by conventional physics or chemistry, and the fact that human life on earth became, is and remains possible only because of the wet element makes it a persistently miraculous vital substance.

Discover the source of the Isar: on foot or by bike

Those who now want to set out for the origin of the Isar themselves can do so most beautifully by bike. The tour starts in Scharnitz at the entrance to the Karwendel valleys. From here, it takes about an hour on the most beautiful paths to the sources of the Isar. If you like, you can go even further: just a short distance away is the rustic and sunny Kastenalm.

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