The Stones That Lost Their Weight

The turning point of George’s legend happened in his middle age. It also happened in a moment of family crisis: his marriage was in trouble, and he felt that he was also losing touch with his children. In an effort to change this, he was spending a lot of time working around the house, even to the point beyond what his body could do comfortably. One day he was pushing a wheelbarrow loaded with stones around his house. Suddenly, feeling dizzy, he stopped and set the wheelbarrow down, just before he fainted. In that moment, he had a glimpse beyond his consciousness of a vision he will always remember. The burdensome stones, losing their weight, jumped upward from a somewhat still water, ascending out of his sight. The message of the legendary, dreamy metaphor seemed to be that as he put down the heavy load of stones, he also laid down the heaviness of traditional male roles, something he had never really asked for. He had paid the price with his health for living too long by the rules of patriarchal culture. In that moment, he was relieved of a role that no one in his family needed from him. His black-out moment invited him to welcome a change with love, and he saw a possible future in which he could embrace a democracy of gender and spirit, living side by side with the women in his family as equals.