Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Inuksuk, Cairns or Zen Rock Piles

"Rocks pray too," said Grandad. "Pebbles and boulders
and old weathered hills. They are still and silent, and
those are two important ways to pray."

- Douglas Wood, Grandad's Prayers of the Earth.

If you look closely above~ there are 17 rocks stacked on the one big stone in the river...

Before Cajes was born Ben and I used to take Sunday drives (like the old married couple we are slowly morphing in to)...with one of our most favorite places to travel to for a day trip being Chimney Rock. Now... I'm not talking about the rock itself, where people come from miles around to hike and see pristine views--I'm talking about the river below the rock and a hole in the wall hot dog stand that we loved very dearly. When I say hole in the wall I speak honestly. This place was a dump....but they had these hot dogs baked inside of homemade yeast rolls for two bucks! And we loved them!!

Even after Cajes was born we would frequent our old hot dog stand periodically throughout the year before we moved to Burlington. Then somehow over the past three years our hot dog shangri la was demolished and a new log cabin retail building was erected in it's place!! UGH!! We were sad, pissed, and disheartened. I tried to re-create them for dinner tonight and it's just absolutely NOT the same. Nevertheless our favorite spot in the river was still there, Thank God.

~My Second Mother's Day with Cajes ~ 2006~

~Cajes and His Daddy ~ 2006~

~6 Months Old ~ 2005~

This is a special little spot for us that we have been going back to over and over for years. I even chose to spend my first Mother's Day at the river eating hot dogs. So we chose to spend this Labor Day revisiting our old stomping ground. And what we found in the river were several man-made Zen-like stacks of rocks. I know you are thinking--SO????....but when you look at them sitting quietly and motionless with this rapid flow of water flushing around them there is something quite magical about their presence. Something quite Zen.

I've always been fascinated by stacks of rocks like this--one more of those "little things" that I don't take for granted. I appreciate the patience and balance it took to get the rocks in the precise position to stay poised and steady despite the elements surrounding them. It's an artform of sorts. I was so mesmerized by them!! All the way home I thought about the rock piles... and I actually did some investigating only to find that these stacks of rocks actually have meaning behind them.

Some people call them Inuksuk. An inuksuk is a man-made stone landmark or cairn, used by the Inuit, Inupiat, Kalaallit, Yupik, and other peoples of the Arctic region of North America, from Alaska to Greenland. It is believed that the inuksuk may have been used for navigation, as a point of reference, a marker for hunting grounds, or as a food cache. The Inupiat in northern Alaska used inuksuit to assist in the herding of caribou into contained areas for slaughter--though this was explained thoroughly so I don't know the dynamics of how this would work. However, I learned that Inuksuit vary in shape and size, with deep roots in the Inuit culture.

Officials in various wilderness parks across Canada are forced to routinely dismantle inuksuit constructed by hikers and campers, for fear that they could misdirect park visitors from the actual cairns and other markers that mark various hiking trails. The practice of erecting inuksuit in parks has become so widespread that Killarney Provincial Park, on the north shore of Ontario's Georgian Bay, issued a notice in 2007 urging visitors to “stop the invasion” of inuksuit. Interesting!

We had a short but sweet trip and Cajes of course cried his eyes out when it was time to leave...

Below are some random photos taken around the house and by the river....Nothing of importance that I feel compelled to blog about--but thought they were interesting enough to share...

The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature. As long as this exists, and it certainly always will, I know that then there will always be comfort for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances may be. And I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles.
- Anne Frank


Monica Ingle said...

L....LLLLLove this post.As sad as it is the one of Cajes walking away crying wiping his tears is the sweetest one of all! Do you think when were this small it's because we have had so much fun that we are afraid we will never experience it again that we as childrn pitch random fits when it's time to go home?I remember dragging Libety from the play ground wailing and screaming when she was three.Kinda breaks your heart for them for just a minute until..They begin to wail and fight even harder and then your like..OK! It's time to go home NOW!(with nice mommy smile through clenched teeth kinda smile only a mother with a screaming ,screetching,bloody murderous tot could know this feeling)Love the post.Love You, Mony:>

Mamma said...

Well, quite an interesting story on the rock theory....
If is was actually put there for a navigational purposes---I wonder how the fish were able to lift them so high since they should be the only ones navigating the water.
Ummm-something to think about..Maybe it was trying to lead YOU somewhere !!!!!!!
Poor Cajes...Looks like his Daddy was after him and he was crying to get away !
Glad you like it there. Is one of my fav. mt. spots too...
But most of all, I enjoyed the pics of the wagon & flowers..Just beautiful...You missed your calling...and that ain't just yo' mamma talking!

Jessie Francis said...

i bet it was hard to keep cajes from knocking those stacks of rocks over. i'd have wanted to myself. maybe this is where olive gets her destructive nature.

Pitts Family said...

It's that "fiery" red head in you that makes you want to be destructive...we all know the truth. (wink~wink)....