On a recent trip to Georgia for a spiritual retreat Patricia and I detoured to a one-traffic light town in the northern part of the state. It was the home of a little known structure called the Georgia Guidestones which are located seven miles north of a tiny rural town called Elberton which itself is about two hours northeast of Atlanta. Elberton, called the "granite capital of the world," produces more granite monuments in its thirty-seven quarries than any other city in the world. Those facts must have played a part in the decision of a strange visitor to erect a large blue-grey towering structure that has become known as America's Stonehenge.
Thirty two years ago in June 1979 a mysterious man who called himself R.C. Christian came to Elberton, deposited a sum of money into the local bank along with specific instructions for erecting a granite monument. Christian gave no information about himself other than he was one of a group of individuals from out of state who had selected the highest elevation in Elberton to build a structure that was dedicated to the future of humanity.
The monument was designed with astronomical, astrological, lunar, solar and environmental significance. There were four monoliths, each 6' wide and almost 20' high, pointing outwards in alignment with the four cardinal directions and the moon's transit in the course of a year. A freestanding central or "celestial" stone between the four cardinal stones supported a 6' x 9' capstone. A hole had been drilled at eye level through the central stone so that the North Star was always aligned and visible. There was also a horizontal slot drilled into the structure so that as the morning sun rose on its annual transit across the heavens it illuminated a ray on the Equinoxes and Solstices. Another slot carved into the upper capstone acted as a calendar marking noon on the stones during the sun's travels.
Each directional stone was carved with ten "guides" for the sustainability of the earth and its inhabitants. The 4" carvings are written in Russian, Chinese, English, Spanish, Arabic, Hebrew, Hindu and Swahili.
The guidestones say:
1. Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature.
2. Guide reproduction wisely - improving fitness and diversity.
3. Unify humanity with a living new language.
4. Rule passion, faith, tradition, and all things with tempered reason.
5. Protect people and nations with fair laws and just courts.
6. Let all nations rule internally resolving external disputes in a world court.
7. Avoid petty laws and useless officials.
8. Balance personal rights with social duties.
9. Prize truth, beauty, love, seeking harmony with the infinite.
10. Be not a cancer on the earth. Leave room for nature. Leave room for nature.
Inscribed on the 13-ton capstone atop the central monolith are the words: Let These be Guidestones to an Age of Reason written in the ancient languages of Sanskrit, Babylonian Cuneiform, Egyptian Hieroglyphics and Classical Greek.
Several feet from the main structure lies a slab of granite flat on the earth that is known as the Time Capsule. It gives a bit of information about the structure's astronomical alignment, that R.C. Christian was a pseudonym and indicates that a time capsule was buried six feet below the slab and was to be opened with no date specified.
With the monument at the highest elevation in Elberton County, it offers panoramic vistas to the east and west. Its remote location and the lack of information about it in guidebooks makes it difficult to find. Yet, it stands testament with guiding principles to the future of the earth and to humanity's life upon it.
While it's difficult to argue with the ten messages of the Guidestones, detractors and conspiracy theories nonetheless abound. Some say the name R.C. Christian was chosen by the anonymous stranger to pay tribute to the esoteric teachings of Christian Rosen Kreuz (Christian Rosy Cross) the legendary founder of the Rosicrucian Order. Religious fundamentalists say the monument was built for devil and sun worship and have demanded that the stones be dismantled and pulverized.
Still others claim there are secret codes in the stones linking them to the tallest building in the Middle East even though the Guidestones were built thirty years before the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. Sadly in 2008, the stones were defaced by vandals who painted, "Death to the new world order" across the tablets. Most of the graffiti had been removed during our visit in June 2011 but there was evidence of additional vandalism with hate-filled words carved specifically across the Arabic and Chinese stone faces.
On the morning of our visit, Patricia and I held a sacred vigil and a meditation at the base of the stones. As we stood alone in the early morning humidity and heat of Georgia, we prayed for the earth, for her inhabitants, and for all the nations represented on the stones. We set a perimeter of sound and light around the monument so that only harmony would be seen by its visitors. We aligned our intentions with those of the builders so that we would "not be a cancer upon the earth" and that there would soon be a time when an "age of reason" would prevail on earth. Surely, if we all align with the higher vision of seeing loving goodness in every person, the golden age we clamor for will one day be the reality on earth.
Jo Mooy - August, 2011