A glass of room temperature water
Hot and cold running water
An empty glass
1. Turn on the hot and cold taps to make warm water. Feel the water coming out of the taps and make further adjustments until it feels like room temperature, then partially fill the empty glass.
2. Put your fingers in room temperature water. Swish them around and leave them there until you have good sense for the feel of that temperature.
3. Put your fingers in the freshly filled glass of water and move them around to get a feel for that temperature.
4. If the freshly-filled glass is too cold, add more hot water. If it is two warm add more cold water.
5. Put your fingers in one glass and then the other and compare their temperatures.
6. Continue to compare and add more water until the freshly-filled glass feels exactly the same as the glass with room temperature water. Now you have two glasses of room temperature water!
Once upon a time, long ago, I helped a friend change the water in his fish tank. We used the above method and it brought about a realization. Temperature is a number, right? That’s how I usually think of it, but it is also an experience. Each temperature variation is actually a distinct experience, just as different colors are distinct experiences. When we compare colors on the canvas with each other and with the colors of object or person we are looking at, we naturally experience the colors more fully. I sometimes find myself looking for a technique to make this process foolproof, but I always come back to working in ways that bring me to a fuller experience of what I am seeing. When artists experience life fully and communicate that experience, it is always more interesting than when they “get it right.”
If you liked this article than I really encourage you to actually try the technique above. That’s the point – you won’t know what I am talking about unless you do it. If it doesn’t work for you, or if you want to have even more fun, then try this alternative. Fill five glasses with tap water ranging form very hot to very cold. Order them by feel from hottest to coldest.