~ A Story of Stones ~

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Greetings:

I am a pebble made smooth by the action of water and sand; my mineral kind and I are one, we are a primary part of the earth’s crust.

I am today as I was when the world was birthed.  I am a part of Man’s history as well as his future. I began as a grain of sand and my makeup is made up of layers of minerals. I have no name – call me what you will.

Since Time my mineral kin and others who are made of grains of sand have been used as tools. In my many forms I have been an awl, a scraper, a chopper, a scoop, a weapon, a building, a measure of weight and more.  In one of my forms as a rock I was part of a mountain.  My presence in a garden is considered practical and useful; in another form I am considered beautiful because I am a rare and precious jewel – valued and treasured; And in your moccasin I cause you pain because my form presses on nerves in the sole of your foot as you walk.

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I do not move of my own volition; I travel by the forces of nature and the will and whim of Man. In my present form as you see me now I was plucked from a stream bed where I was nested with others of my mineral makeup. A hand plucked me from the waters where I had been for a space of time. Why I was chosen and not the form beside me? I do not know, but I found myself flying through the air; this is one way that I travel from place to place.

This has always been my history – this is my future as well. Many times as a tiny grain of sand I have been picked up by birds as they’ve pecked the ground for seed and spent time in their gullet, traveling through their digestive system to exit their system as a dropping. I’ve been urinated on, and covered in excrement. I’ve been rained on and buried under snow and borne the cold and darkness of the barren earth.

I’ve hurled through space in hurricanes and tornadoes, and children pick me up and place me in their pockets. I’ve been kept in a pocket as a worry stone by men and used as a weapon against man and beast, and words and pictures have been carved on the surface of my mineral kin since Time.

I’m imaged as a mental road block by Man and a Man’s heart is often referred to as a heart of stone: the plague of Man – his unyielding mindset: Man has forgotten that everything within the circle of life happens in cycles and seasons as I am here today – but Man and I will both evolve and we will both disappear unnoticed. Once the purpose here is complete I will travel again by other means to another place.

There is no ending there is only a new beginning. Man and I will always BE.  Both Man and I have Been since the crust of the earth rose from the roiling water and the shorelines and directions were established. From Time Man wearies, worries and wars but I never weary or feel. I simply am what I am. Since time I am here by the whim of Man and the force of both Man and nature yet I am shaped and moved as a part of the wildlife, the landscape and all the forces of nature.

Night, day, weekdays, weekends, holidays or holy days have no meaning since my Being is not guided by kings or king’s ransom or pope nor president, priest or prophet or lover. I am simply who I am. As a grain of sand I was a boulder to an ant. As a boulder I have blocked entrances to tombs, blocked the flow of water in rivers; stopped the flow of traffic on a highway. I am a barrier, yet I am who I am in all forms of mineral composition.

I withstand the motions of the tides; a dying forest, a new forest, a barren desert, a dark cave, icy waters, hot winds; no matter- I am at home. Home beneath the grass and trees as the seasons change: as the planets orbit overhead I am who I am and I am always home. I am home with others of my makeup as part of man’s placement in a medicine wheel. I am home in the great circle where the equinoxes and solstices are noted by Man.  I am home on an island as one of the idols where it appears that man has placed me. Man continually searches for home: mine is wherever the traveler places me; I remain there until the force of nature or man moves me again.

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I am still connected with all things everywhere at all times whether on a bookshelf, desk, secured in a curio cabinet or locked in a bank vault. Home is wherever the traveler leaves me: under a tree or rosebush; a cactus, a hot bed of sand, a grassy meadow or fast running stream – this is always my home no matter. I am not holy: I have nothing to give and expect nothing. The imperturbability of nature soothes and heals man, but I have no sensations, no sentimentalities – I am who I am.

In ancient judicial systems a white stone was used to cast or pronounce judgment. A black stone signified a guilty verdict and a white stone meant freedom from all charges. A white stone was used as an admission ticket to public festivals in ancient days.

The commonality with Man lies in our beginning, a time when both of us remembered our omnipresent connection with all life.  The mass of Man is made cells and water – of minerals his organic makeup is complex. Man has the powers of will and reason and was endowed with the power to self-govern, given the capability of thinking, planning and doing so was given dominion over the beasts and the earth. Man was born to dream; born to have visions: to reach out and up. My mineral kin and I do not dream we have no visions we have no capability to reach; but why should we? We are what we are and know who we are.

There is no ending: All life is a journey of beginning again. Time is in Man’s head. Life is in Mans’ hands: Man is fluid and adaptable his atoms and molecules spin much faster than mine and my mineral kin whose atoms spin slower. Man too must yield to the extremes of nature and pressure and will enter another season and cycle of Time. This is a common destiny we share: “Earth to earth… dust to dust.” Man like me will be reduced again to a grain of sand, to powder.

Man must take off his shoes to recall the ancient memories: Man forgot the feeling of grass, sand and the powdery earth on his feet: He forgot that love is in Mans’ heart, has also forgotten his chemical – mineral makeup, forgotten his omnipresent connection with nature. Man believes in division; he’s forgotten that earth is a living circle; a seed surrounded by light. In this cycle Man dictates – divides – dominates – destroys all that he was given dominion over.

 

And that is my story

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Legacies

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Summer stars, a circle before the fire, a rattle_ a drum, white sage, desert sage;

Sacred sage, lavender and sweet grass_ a shallow bowl_   a white feather

A cleansing fire_ the sweet smoke sending my message of

Thanksgiving to the Creator

 Earth is our home_ here we all immigrants and we live either as a migrant or settler_ it makes no matter which since each of us was given a starting place from which can travel to and fro across this vast landscape in space_ this place called earth.  Home: We are one of the nine billion on the earth_here everyone walks a path according to our personality makeup. We walk with dignity and honor or corruptly- arrogant and cruel – or humble or kind. Among us are the industrious as well as the slackers. We have the gifted mind and the ordinary. Among us are those who bless us and those who curse us, those who nurture us and walking with us are the artists, poets, warriors, writers, sages and saints.   

 But no one remembers the pattern of the stars when two hearts beat as one, when two lovers played with fire – passion and desire – no, no one remembers that far back in time, back in ancient history when man thought the earth was a great forest, a great forest surrounded by a silvery lake so wide that he could sail for days and not see the other side, when man lived humbly and tilled the soil and tended the flock in the fields and lived in a simple dwelling_ perhaps on the crest of a hill set high in the trees, or perhaps on a grassy slope that lead from the water_ where both fish  and bird sought the water nymphs that fluttered above the water. No, no one remembers that far back in time when the only sound man heard was the lapping of the water, the rustle of the leaves in the summer wind, the chirping of the crickets, the sound of the songbirds, the crackle of the campfire, the fat drops of the spring rain splatting on the dusty earth or the faraway sound of a shepherd’s pipe.   

 We must be mindful and respectful, we must leave our children and our great grandchildren places of silent communion, places to escape from all the noises of today_ the hustle and bustle of everyday life. These places must include healthy forests, grasslands, marshes and meadows.  We cannot be idle_ our rivers, lakes and oceans must be cleaned and freshened. We simply must take care of them, we cannot continue to connive and contrive to control the future of the world the future of the human race … We are the future of the human race.   

 As immigrants we are all stewards, each one of us needs to preserve the Ways of our ancestors and our ancient roots, we need to love the earth and care for it and nurture it in the same manner that we take care of ourselves and our children. We need to take care of the places so that our great-great grandchildren can remember ‘home.’ All children need to dance in the rain, play in the leaves, they need to ‘feel the forest beneath their feet.’ They need clean lakes to swim in and clean sandy shores to play on. We need to leave them rabbit holes and moss covered oaks and fireflies and June Bugs, snails and frogs.  

There is a need to make progressive changes, but let’s make them safe.  Yes, the alterations do matter. We need to be aware of all the alterations in all the ecosystems: each and every change made locally has a ripple effect and we need to think twice about the chemicals we use, and yes we need to take care of the present world but we can’t destroy what exists to meet the needs of the future. We are to be mindful and respectful of all living things as we prepare the legacy we leave the children_ for their future.

Everyone leaves footprints in the sand – everyone leaves a legacy; some legacies will be good and some will be bad … Family: we are the future of the human race so let our legacy be for the betterment of mankind; let’s leave the children of the future places of silent communion; a wonder filled world of daisy’s and sunflowers, dandelions and dragonfly’s, honey bees and butterfly’s, grassy meadows and fast flowing rivers and streams.        

Rachel