The Water Dragon of Los Pozones Hot Springs, Chile

Posted on Posted in Chile

Chile’s Lake District feels a lot like the Pacific Northwest.* It’s green, rainy, full of trees and mountains and, of course, lakes. But when we looked a bit closer, we realized that those oh so familiar green slopes were covered not with Douglas Firs but with evergreen beeches, myrtles, and eucalyptus trees. And there were a few more volcanoes on the horizon than we were used to. And lots of hot springs.

Termas Los Pozones, my absolute favorite, lies nestled in the hills beside the Rio Liucura, just an hour’s drive from Pucon, a scenic resort town on the shores of Lake Villarrica.

Lola, Todd and Alex’s camper van, is not a rugged, all-terrain sort of vehicle, so we parked in the upper parking lot and walked down over a hundred river-rock stair steps.

There are six pools lined with river-rock. The hottest one is where the steps come down and they get cooler as you go downstream. I only tested three. The first one was hot. I could feel the hot water welling up through the gravel bottom. The other two went from warm to tepid. I spent all my time in the hot pool.

As I floated in the pool, feeling the hot water welling up through the gravel bottom and swirling around my body I gradually became aware of a large presence curling around me, flowing sinuously with the water. My eyes snapped open in alarm, but there was nothing there, and nobody else seemed at all disturbed. Then I “looked” with my other eyes and realized I was enfolded in the coils of an enormous dragon. He wasn’t quite as large and sturdy as the two dragons that live on the ridge beneath out house.** His body was thinner, daintier, and even more sinuous. And he had fins as well as fore and hind legs. I realized that I was in the embrace of a water dragon.

Greetings!” he said, gazing fondly at me with luminous green twirling eyes. I stared at his mouthful of long, pointy teeth, paralyzed between fear and wonder and tried to think of something intelligent to say.

Uh,” I said.

Your friends stopped by and told me you were coming. They asked me to introduce myself and make you comfortable,” he said, spiraling gently around my body, making the water stream and pulse against my skin, and soothing away my tension and fear. “Your neck is tight.”

My neck has been tight for years, and my shoulders too. But they soon relaxed into happy Jell-O.

You’ve been in here long enough. Get out, cool down, drink some water, and come back in. I will release your low back.”

The Rio Liucura

I got out, watched the river, and lined up my questions. I had no doubt that the “friends” that the water dragon was referring to were our dragons from home. They had done me a huge favor. Dragons are not social creatures and guard their territories fiercely.

Lowering myself slowly back into the pool, I floated in the dragons coils and asked, “Do these springs belong to you?”

Of course, but I’m happy to share the waters with whoever needs them.” I “saw” water streaming through hundreds of crevices deep in the earth, through the dragon’s cave, sparkling with millions of mineral crystals, and up into the pools.

Do you heal everyone who comes here?”

The waters themselves are potent with minerals and earth magic, and are healing enough for most. But occasionally, I will do a healing.”

Thank you,” I said as my lumbar vertebrae oozed into perfect alignment, “I’m honored.”

Realizing that I was in the coils of a master healer, I asked, “What’s the most important thing to know about healing?”

Ah, you know that already. It’s all about the flow.”

Of course, a water dragon would say that. And of course, I knew that.”

Does anyone else know you’re here?”

I don’t show myself to many, and most of those never notice. But that boy…” (I “saw” the eight-or-so-year-old boy with the cruelly curved spine that I’d noticed getting out of the warm pool) “…is a special friend of mine.” Tears came to my eyes as I remembered the huge grin on the boy’s face.

Enough questions. Be still and enjoy.”

All I have to do is remember that amazing afternoon at Termas Los Pozones and my whole body relaxes and I smile.

Next time you visit a hot spring, check for a water dragon.

*My husband and I recently visited our son and daughter-in-law who are driving around South America in their camper van. They were in the Lake District, so that’s where we began our trip.

*Yes, two marvelous dragons, a red one and a white one, own the land around our house. Mostly they sleep coiled beneath us, but they also love to fly. They can be anywhere they’ve already been in the blink of an eye and often follow us when we travel. They absolutely loved roaring through the Paris subways. They were here when we moved into the house and I have no doubt that they’ll be here for centuries after we’re gone.

10 thoughts on “The Water Dragon of Los Pozones Hot Springs, Chile

  1. I just remembered a memory from my childhood. There was a man in the Tolkien Society when I was in high school who was friends with dragons in Portland. He introduced me to my fir tree friend Naia in Forest Park, the one who showed me the eruption of Mt. St. Helens 5 years before it happened. I suspect there is another dragon living in Tualatin Mountain (the “West Hills,” aka Forest Park.

    1. It’s nice to hear that my story prompted such a wonderful childhood memory! When Naia showed you the Mt. St. Helens eruption, did you know what it was?

      Yes, our dragons say there are several in that area. Two are a mated pair. I also met the dragon that lives under The Grotto in Rocky Butte. He’s very old and crotchety. He referred to our dragons as “Those young whippersnappers.”

  2. There is a red dragon and a yellow dragon living below my Hill as well in Vancouver. I painted my office their colors to honor them. They don’t care for all the development lately.

    1. Excellent!
      Dragons are a blessing.
      Most are also rabidly conservative. I’m not surprised that they are unhappy with all the development!

  3. I have been reading C. G. Jung on water-dragons, in the book Jung’s Seminar on Nietzsche’s Zarathustra, unabridged edition, p. 649:

    The word dragon comes from the Latin drako and the Greek drakon, meaning snake; it is the same word. (In German, Wurm and snake are the same; and the dragon is the Lindwurm, lind being originally a Celtic word which meant “soft, flowing like water.” The name of our river Limmat comes from lind, and the upper part of the river is called the Linth. And there is a Roman inscription found near the lake of Thun in Switzerland which says the inhabitants of the regio Lindensis, meaning the Lind region, devote this altar to the gods; the Lind being the water region, they were inhabitants of the lake. The German town Lindau on Lake Constance comes from that same root, lind.) The dragon is a water worm, and dragons are always supposed to live near the water or in the rivers, brooks, and so on. Another connection is the fact that a river meanders exactly as a snake moves. Also the Chinese Tao is of the nature of water—it moves like a snake—and the original idea of the Tao was a feminine goddess that was a serpent. So the serpent and the river are essentially the same because they are analogous; for to the primitive mind things that are analogous, or of analogous use to man, are supposed to be substantially the same.

    Whenever the snake symbolism appears in dreams, then, it is always representative of the lower motor centers of the brain and of the spinal cord, and our fear of snakes denotes that we are not fully in tune with our instinctive lower centers; they still contain a threat to us. This comes from the fact that our consciousness, having a certain amount of real freedom of will, can deviate from the inexorable laws of nature which govern man, from our own laws which are organically formed in the structure of the lower brain surface. Inasmuch as we have ethical freedom we can deviate but we do it with fear; we have a certain idea that something untoward will happen to us because we are instinctively aware of the power of those lower centers. …

    1. Thanks, Mike.
      Didn’t know Jung wrote about water-dragons. I take it that’s a quote, or info straight from Jung’s Seminar that follows your first sentence?

      If so, much as I admire C. G. Jung, I must disagree with him. I don’t think dragons are confined to water. The ones that live in Alameda Ridge, which is a gravel bar formed by the Missoula Floods roaring past Rocky Butte 13,000-15,000 years ago, don’t live near water. Their thing is earth and fire. And they are NOT pleased to be considered analogous to my lower brain.

      But it’s interesting info. I guess that’s where we get the word Limnology–the study of lakes?

      Sending hugs…

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