Life Cairn II

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Issue 271
March/April 2012
Animals: A New Ethics

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Life Cairn II

issue cover 271

Cover: Photo: Welsh Mountain Sheep by Julia Finzel

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Peter Owen Jones plants a seed of peace and calls for change in our understanding of what progress is.

Photo by Vanessa Vine

Photo by Vanessa Vine

The Life Cairn now has well over 3,000 stones on it. We have had visitors from Kenya, the Netherlands and Spain who have come specifically to lay a stone. I have often wondered why people shed tears in churches and temples. Maybe it’s because they are places where we feel safe enough to release our pain. To do that, we have to become vulnerable. There have been many tears shed up at the Life Cairn. Tears for what has been lost; for what we have so remorselessly removed. These losses are set to continue at a terrifying rate.

Over the last year – our first – all of us involved with the Life Cairn have come to realise that it is no more than a seed: a seed of peace. Once it takes root in the ground of our being, we cannot be as we were. We cannot any more unconsciously despoil and eradicate. We take the first steps to becoming guardians and nurturers.

This year there will be two new Life Cairns: one in Southern France, one in Sweden. The idea is that we carry, on foot, one stone – one seed, if you like – from the Life Cairn in England, all the way to these two new cairns. If you feel called to become a stone carrier, to walk this seed on its journey for 10 miles or so, then please get in touch. We’d love to hear from you.

Peter Owen Jones started the Life Cairn in partnership with Andreas Kornevall, director of the Earth Restoration Service. For more information see

Peter Owen Jones is an Anglican priest, a BBC presenter and an author.

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