Welcome to Balanced Rocks: Pictures and Stories

Beginning March 16,2010, I began a journey of balancing rocks. I hold to the practice of setting to balance at least five sculptures a day, sometimes, many more. Of these I take lots of pictures and videos. While conducting this adventure, I have been introduced to an incredible unfolding story. Additionally, I discovered this phenomenon is manifesting worldwide. As I post pictures and stories, I found many others similarly engaged and sharing their works. Additionally, as folks come upon me performing my work, many want to find out how this is done and try themselves. This blog shares this work in both pictures and stories. Enjoy


A seeming impossibility becomes possible

Rock Balancing: The Beginning

On a fine summer day, sometime in August, 2009, I was visiting family in Toronto. Like most folks spending summer in a large city, we used up as much time as we could finding outdoor events that would cool us. One afternoon, we headed to the Beaches section of East Toronto. After spending some time playing in a large sandbox in the shade with my grandkids and some of their newfound companions, we headed to the Boardwalk that extends from Balmy Beach to Kew Gardens. Ella accompanied me, Liam took off with his mom, Natalie. They ventured down the boardwalk, Ella and I headed onto the sand toward the water’s edge. Halfway there we encountered what looked like a small size Stonehenge.

About a dozen sculptures were gathered together in a rough circle. Each was a stack of two or three rocks balanced one on another. The tallest one was slightly taller than Ella, who was small average height for a five year older. All were in the neighborhood of three feet and four feet tall. What immediately jumped out was the precarious nature of the balancing. Most points of contact were miraculously slight. Most seemed to be standing on a point. Two more folks were witnessing this amazing display. We imagined that there must be small metal rods embedded at the point of contact, or else some kind of glue was used. Each of us peered from close low angles to detect what could account for this mystical display. Ella, not being so cautious, toppled one structure over. Luckily, it did not land on her.

I hurried over and picked up the fallen rock. I saw no evidence of a rod or glue. It indeed had been balanced on its pedestal. I lifted it up and tried to place it back where I reckoned it had been balanced. I cautioned Ella, to be careful and not upset any more sculptures and went about the task of finding balance. I was not successful and struggled immensely but did not find the magic spot where stability could be achieved. After a lengthy effort, an attractive Asian woman about my age approached and gently nudged me aside offering to demonstrate her work. She pointed to the spot she would set the stone upon. She called it by a foreign name. To me it looked like a slight dimple.

Placing the small end of the upper rock into that hollow, she deftly and quickly moved it around, slightly twisting and cajoling it into position. The sight of this slender woman with longish graying hair performing an intricate dance with a rock slightly larger than her head emanated calmness. It seemed only the ends of her fingers were used to achieve these small movements. Apparently, equilibrium was close. Shortly she was done and withdrew her palms which naturally assumed an open prayer posture. The rock I had grappled with was majestically resting in its previous stable state. She next went over and reset two other structures, I had not noticed were also amiss. I just took them to be part of the rubble strewn about the beach. Now all the display was standing and providing a small sense of order in our chaotic world.

I never got this woman’s name, but heard her story. She had set this display up for the purpose of taking pictures, one of which she hoped to use for a cover of a book she was publishing. Unfortunately not getting her name makes it difficult to find her book. But I carried away with me the sight of her presentation and the incredible feeling I had witnessed an amazing ethereal event. I also felt an urge to explore this practice.

Rock in the Snow

Rock in the Snow
January in Toronto

Friday, May 9, 2008

Easter is Approaching, March, 1975: Grassy Key, FL

Hardly anyone in our community knew what time it was, nor had a good handle on the day or month. We had reckoned it was several days after Mardi Gras and that meant we were counting down the days from forty towards Easter. Since Fat Tuesday landed somewhere near the middle of February, and that was certainly over two weeks ago, it meant we were at some point in March. Observing the moon was just beginning to wax, a pagan amongst us noted that by the time the moon became full, it would also be past the Vernal Equinox. Putting all this together, meant that Easter would arrive the first Sunday after we observed the moon going full. Since we had little to distract us, our community observed and noted the increase of the moon conjunct with the swelling of the tides and the approach of Spring. There were some amongst us who were talking about heading back North. I wondered about the possibility of exporting this Paradise community as folks headed out. It was then that a most powerful vision arrived.
The evening that the tide seemed to be at its peak and the moon its fullest I was sleeping a few feet from Jennifer’s small tent several feet above the high water mark. In a dream state I was awakened in the exact lsame ocation. I arose and sauntered down to our central campfire area. There I met one of our community, Karen. We greeted each other and decided to take up the chore of venturing to town with some plastic milk jugs to collect fresh water. This was a needed task since we had no nearby sources. We gathered up our collection of empties and headed out to the road. When we got there we were puzzled by a complete lack of traffic or other signs of human activity. After what seemed like an hour, we noticed a van approaching. It stopped and after we climbed aboard, the driver looking puzzled stated, “You are the first people I‘ve seen this morning in over an hour. What is going on?” “I don’t know. You’re the first person we have seen this morning. We’re headed to Marathon. Maybe there we’ll find out,” I shot back. We headed off toward town.
As we pulled into town, the streets were likewise deserted. We noticed a couple of others walking around looking puzzled. We all convened at the gas station were we were able to obtain water. No one among us had a clue about what was going on. After filling our jugs, Karen and I headed back to our beach. Shortly a new model car pulled over and offered us a ride. Still wondering, we climbed in and told the driver our destination. He appeared to be a middle aged, balding, round faced, business man. Without a prompt he offered an explanation of the strange events. His words, “The world has undergone a judgment. It has been divided into two, one side headed for destruction and the other towards Paradise. Those on the other side are not even aware anyone is missing.” He did not introduce himself, but I took him to be Jesus. He let us of at our road. Shortly thereafter, I awoke at my spot on the beach, with a fresh vivid memory of this compelling vision.
I stumbled down to the central campfire and was greeted by Karen, the same person who had appeared in my dream vision. She greeted me with, “You wouldn’t believe the dream I just had. You were in it.” We compared dreams and it seemed we had shared the same visionary experience. The next couple of guys who stumbled into our morning also related similar encounters in their night’s vision. Soon others were awake and business of finding our daily bread got under way. I put my story away and went into town with Karen to get some water


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Blog Archive

About Me, Part One

My photo
Rock Balancing: The Beginning. What began as a journal of my travels took a hiatus when I began to settle in Ithaca NY. In the meantime, I took up the practice of setting rocks to balance. I returned to my blog to begin recording this story

Part, The second

On Easter Sunday Morning, 2008, I made a decision to settle in the Ithaca New York area. At the same time, I decided to continue to post my blog, However, the stories now will come from the archive stored internally. These will be the stories I gathered while on previous journeys and never entrusted to paper. The date of each posting will not reflect the date of the story being related but will mark the date that narrative got inscribed.

Carry wood

Carry wood
33 years later

Part: The third

I took a brief hiatus from my daily blog writing. I did not know the direction it would take. part of me thought I would abandon it. It turns out I missed it. The old title "On the Road Again' is no longer apt. It appears I am settling. The travel stories will age to a point, when I will probably resusitiate them and do something with them. I dusted off some old stories and begin this new series.
Thr first is one was written two years ago. I edited it and begin again a series that is more apropos to someone settling in upper New York State. They are meant to warm, amuse, educate and sometimes inflame.