A Heart of Stone

The earth beneath our feet has been formed by intense fire and immense pressure, forged upon the anvil of time into the beautiful, natural world we see today.  It can however, at times, also be challenging due to the hand of ‘Man’ and our relentless need to mould of nature to our will.  Green spaces, that once gave us an oasis of calm, have become concrete walls that trap us, closing us in both mentally (the head) as well as emotionally (the heart).

However, it is still possible to find ourselves in an exquisitely peaceful space, if we just remember that it is there and take steps to return there.  Through mindful awareness, self analysis and either visualisation or physical steps to return to nature, we are all be able to find emotional and psychological healing.

Through ‘A Heart of Stone’, we intend on bringing small ‘mindful moments’ to your day.

We decided, and it was in part inspired by a Facebook ‘movement’ called Harrogate Rock Hunt, we started to paint small rocks and stones with symbols that, to us had an deep underlying meaning.

Human beings for millennia have been carving and painting rocks in a way that both worships the earth around them as well as connects the to their fellow ‘Man’.  Each image or symbols described their connection to the planet and we felt that the act of marking a small stone from the very earth that we stood on had the potential to provide a powerful message to the finder/ seeker.

Each marked symbol has a corresponding message and each snippet has a link that takes the finder to more information about the symbol, insight/ commentary on the triggered subject matter and techniques for finding calm (e.g. Mindfulness) or links to other sites and information on personal development.

While we started out doing this alone, we felt that ‘everyone’ should have the chance to be part of this movement and to share present moment awareness, the love of the natural world and because we have a desire to make the world a healthier and happier place to live, we encourage everyone to take part.

If you want to take part here are the basics:

  • Firstly, you take a rock that you find and one that ‘feels’ right to you.  The shape and size is up to you, but something that can be carried around as a reminder to be ‘mindful’, etc. would be a good way to spread the message.
  • You then choose one of the symbols from the list here:
  • You then decorate it with paint/sharpie/crayons etc.
  • On the back you add the name of the symbol, or its meaning (again from the list)
  • And you then put on the web address:  H2HN.CO.UK as a way to spread the word.
  • N.b. It can be sealed with PVA if you want to make it waterproof, and of course the symbol and the meaning is the main part of the rock, but creativity is encouraged!
  • Finally, You then place it somewhere of interest, e.g. in a place where you may think people need to find piece and calm (an office, on the train, in a coffee shop, a public place e.g. bench).
  • People can then take it home (they ‘keep’ it), or they can re-hide (adding ‘re-hide’ to the back of the rock is an option).

There are a few key things to remember.  Please remember to be respectful of private property and businesses and please only hide rocks in safe public areas.  Please make sure that they don’t interfere with lawn mowers or fall on someone’s head.  We want people to be calm, not knocked out!

One question that did crop us was “Where do I get rocks from?”  We want the rocks to be from a sustainable and environmentally friendly source.  We have found a lot of the first few of our stones in our own gardens or from places that are just piles of rubble or on discarded piles of stones.  However,  if you want to make something particularly special as a keep sake (‘Keep’) then you can buy stones from DIY shops, garden centres and aquatic centre etc.  Please, please, please don’t just take them off beaches or from river beds etc – if everyone did that there would be a big impact on the environment and this is something that we don’t want to do.  We want as many people to experience the natural world in all its glory.

Finally, the premise behind ‘A Heart of Stone’, is to get people outside but also to start to think ‘mindfully’ about their lives and the people around them.  The symbols and the ideas behind them are merely triggers for looking deeper and establishing a lasting understanding of the world around.  Our place in it and our relationship and connection (or lack of it) is in our  hands, like the stone.  The generations to come and our children’s children need to have a planet that can sustain them.  The protection of this planet starts in our actions, and in our heads and hearts.  It is hoped that through this small ‘movement’ we can bring more people to the present moment and by reconnecting with each other and the natural world we can all work towards making a happier, healthier and more sustainable world for us all to enjoy.

Jonathan & Mohsen

(Head To Heart Network)