Why do we value water so highly?
Russia has 12 seas and three oceans in its vicinity, not to mention many magnificent rivers. Perhaps because of that the most mythologized element in Slavic mythology is water. According to the Slavs, water is the source of all that exists at the beginning of the world.
Oceans, seas, lakes, and rivers play a major role in many legends, stories, and fairy tales. Interestingly, the ocean and sea are not presented as separate. In fact, the “sea-ocean” is a special entity and ritual saying in many fairy tales: “Ha море-океане, на острове Буяне, стоит бел-горюч камень Алатырь.” (“On the sea-ocean, on the island of Buyan, there is a white-hot stone Alatyr”).
All the many magical qualities of water are concentrated in the folk image of “Living and Dead [or Whole] Water.” Since it first made a person whole, then brought him back to life.