My post is a little different this week.
I’d like to introduce you to a symbol that changed my life and forms the basis of my life’s philosophy.
The symbol is that of a cairn.
Cairn
/kern/
1. n. a mound of stones piled up as a landmark, memorial or to mark a boundary or path.
Canva - Cairn, Fog, Mystical, Background, River, Stones, Moss Web
I first encountered cairns in 2003 on a hike near Moab, Utah. My hiking companion and I were heading towards Delicate Arch across slippery rock, our trail blazed with stacks of red stone. I’d been on many hikes in my home state of Colorado, but never one marked in such a unique way.
Over the next week and many hours of hiking, we grew to rely on our ever-present stone guides.
As we hiked, we began to see cairns as much more than utilitarian markers along our path. We began to see cairns as symbols of a well-balanced life.
We are not the first to see the cairn as a symbol of balance. Aesthetic cairns – cairns built as stone art rather than for navigation – are seen frequently in places of relaxation and meditation.
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The symbol resonates even for those who are unfamiliar with its true navigational purpose. As a culture, we understand this natural yet man-made artifact as having meaning: of peace, of balance, of unity. It is a symbol that is both aesthetically pleasing and pragmatic.
Returning home from my Utah hike, the symbol of the cairn remained with me. Over the years this seed of a symbol has grown and become central to how I lead my life.
The symbol has provided comfort and guidance during difficult times and a point of focus when moving forward.
I’ve used the idea of the cairn to center my thinking and to bring peace and serenity to chaos. The symbol helps me focus while making difficult decisions and to keep my perspective when life has overwhelmed me to the point of drowning.
It has kept me looking forward in times of depression and allowed me to trace the path of my life to its current point.
The cairn is a concrete image – a touchstone – that I can hold in my mind as a point of meditation or as a simple reminder of how I want to live my life. The cairn has become a personal symbol in my quest to live a well-balanced life.
I’ve gathered my thoughts together as an ebook in order to share with others this deeply personal symbol of life. I share my ever-developing personal understanding of what has become a powerful symbol in my life.
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I explore the cairn as a symbol of balance and stability that allows me to approach life’s failures and limitations in a positive way. I link multiple cairns together as a symbol of my journey through life. This line of cairns allows me to visualize both my past and future while at the same time centering me in the present. I expand on this idea to show how cairns help me make decisions when my life’s path diverges. Finally, I explore cairns as symbols of arrival, of celebration, and a point of rest.
My ideas surrounding cairns evolved naturally and are not based in any established religion or philosophy. Readers familiar with meditation and Zen philosophies may find harmony with some the ideas.
Here are a few pages to get you started or download a sample pdf. The book is available for Kindle
If the ideas help, please let me know and pass along the sample book. If you’d like to receive a free copy to review for your website or blog, please contact me through the contact link above.
Screen Shot 2018-11-04 at 7.36.54 AMBook Description
This book is a philosophy of life for overcoming 21st century stress and anxiety and to provide stability to your life. The philosophy is based on the symbol of a cairn, a mound of stones piled up as a landmark, memorial or to mark a boundary or path. The symbol provides comfort and guidance during difficult times and a point of focus when moving forward. Through this book, I will share my ever-developing personal understanding of what has become a powerful symbol in my life. I will explore the cairn itself as a symbol of balance and stability that allows me to approach life’s failures and limitations in a positive way. I will then link multiple cairns together as a symbol of my journey through life. This line of cairns allows me to visualize both my past and future while at the same time centering me in the present. I will expand on this idea to show how cairns help me make decisions when my life’s path diverges. Finally, I will explore cairns as symbols of arrival, of celebration, and a point of rest. My ideas surrounding cairns evolved naturally and are not based in any established religion or philosophy however, readers familiar with meditation and Zen philosophies may find harmony with the ideas in the book. The cairn is a concrete image – a touchstone – that you can hold in your mind as a point of meditation or as a simple reminder of how you want to live your life. The cairn has become a personal symbol in my quest to live a well-balanced life and it can become a powerful symbol to calm your thinking and help you live a successful life. The book is available for Kindle

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