In many traditions of the North American Aboriginal cultures, stones and crystals are called, "Stone People". This is a way of acknowledging that there is a sentience to the earth and all the stones, which are also considered to be the bones of the Earth Mother. Trees are often called, "Standing People", which acknowledges the sentience of them as well. They are what I often refer to as "Our symbiotic partners of the Earth", which refers to the fact that without the trees, shrubs, plants, grasses, grains, vegetables and flowers, we would not be able to live. It also addresses the fact that the air we breathe is exchanged with them and that it is through this exchange that all creatures of the Earth are able to live.
In many ancient traditions, stones were also placed in particular patterns, and often in an upright position. This created the "Standing Stones" which are often found throughout the British Isles and Europe. These particular Standing Stones are found in Scotland. The ancients knew that there are special places on the Earth that have stronger energies than other places. These Standing Stones were created as a means of marking the locations as well as creating an intensification of those energies for sacred rituals. The relationship between humans and Spirit was considered to be ultimately important. The Standing Stones were not placed there as an offering to any Deity, but rather as a way of creating Sacred Space in which communion with Spirit was made possible. Often placed in a circle, these arrangements of stones created opportunity to step through a vortex of energy and speak directly with the Creative Spirit. Is it any wonder that thousands of years later they were said by churches to be evil? After all, if each individual were able to access Spirit on his or her own, then what use would there be for the Church? If the Church were to have no use, then the power it wielded over the people would become impotent. Yet many churches and cathedrals were erected over top the very same structures and sacred sites. That way they superimposed their own beliefs onto those of the people whom they had conquered. But the people they conquered were smarter than that. They knew that it would not be long before the church of the conquerors were assimilating the ancient ways and thus, unknowingly and unwillingly, would become yet another expression of the older and wiser ways.
Much of that still exists today. Yet even though the Church of the conquerors stand over top of the ancient Sacred Spaces, I find myself attracted more to the Standing Stones, the Medicine Wheels, the Henges, and the Labyrinths. They resonate with my being more deeply than the cathedrals and churches do, even though the cathedrals and churches are built over top the sacred sites. I guess somehow I just can't relate to the carcass hanging on a cross and bleeding from a wound on his side. In fact, I wonder sometimes if Jesus, if he were to read a bible, would weep not for the "sinners" but for the way his teachings have been mutilated over time. I think that he would perhaps have preferred to stand in the center of Stone Henge and chant, as opposed to hang at the front of a church or cathedral, half naked and wounded. I think that Jesus was more Pagan than Jew. And he certainly wasn't Christian. That came along centuries after his death.
Yes, the Standing Stones are certainly more appealing. The energy that emits, even from just a photograph of them, is immense. I hope that one day humans will find their way back, en mass, to the ancient ways of wisdom. That way we will find our way back to the Heart and no longer need the "middle man" to create sacred communion with Spirit. And yes, I do know that what I have written is considered by many to be "blasphemous". Isn't it nice that we now live in an age where that no longer matters?