Thursday, February 22, 2007

Grand Fathers
The Wisdom of Stone
In the sweat lodge, we refer to the rocks we heat in the fire as Grand Fathers because of their old age and patience. This comes, of course, from Native American traditions, and I am reminded of a time I learned something else about small rocks from a First Generation's man.
His name was Jerome, and we were both at a men's seminar to conduct our workshops. At the end of the weekend, Jerome stood before each man there and held a bag above eye level. He invited each of us to reach into the bag and to, "Let a stone choose you." Eventually, we all had a stone in hand.
Jerome then explained how stones were clever individuals, and he taught us how they could get us to pick them up and carry them to another place where they would rather be. When they were feeling playful, they could get us to skip them on the water. When they tired of our company, they would get us to set them down and leave them to themselves. Clever indeed.
Some of you, I suspect aren't buying into this personification of the hard minerals we call stones. But why? Is it so hard to believe that something we consider inanimate could control us and cause us to act in unpredictable and even silly ways? After all, I've seen guys go nutty at the sight of a chunk of fiberglass, kevlar, wood and even cloth made into the shape of a kayak. Now that's unbelievable.
Paddle safe...


Michael said...

Funny. I know someone who fills her kayak with stones during her paddling trips. It's hard to imagine that many stones want to be taken some place new, but perhaps they do!

Silbs said...

Either that or they wanted to be with her :)