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The stone on my desk

Colin Campbell
by Colin Campbell on 30/11/19 18:00


“I have a stone” I have written about this subject before, but then it is hard to write over two-thousand blogs and not repeat yourself once in a while.

The background to this is in this link and I recommend reading this, although there is a little bit of reading in it.

The concept of the stone on the desk comes from Charles Handy.

If ever Britain produced a business guru/social philosopher, it was Handy.

It was the first book ever related to business (and it wasn’t related to business at all) that I read.

Andy was able to blend a classical education and a love of the classics to everyday practice; he was truly an outstanding individual.

In his book the Hungry spirit, he talks about the stone on his desk and it is explained in the link above.

In the book of revelation (in the bible in case you were wondering) there is a mysterious, cryptic quote “To the one who prevails the Spirit says, I will give a white stone… on which is written a name, it shall be known only to the one who receives it”.

Andy turned this round and put a stone on his desk and imagined he was working his whole life to try and find out who he was and in the end if he got things right, he would know and he would have succeeded.

That’s what the white stone represented to him on his desk.

Years ago after I had read this and was quite taken with the possibility of having a stone on my desk that meant something, I thought I would take it on for myself as soon as I got a desk at work.

I wondered what type of white stone I would have and how wonderful it would look it on my desk, but one day I was in my front garden messing about with one thing or another and I found my stone.

Not a stone, a slate (there is loads of slate in my front garden).

But this slate is a little bit different, and for one reason or another it caught my eye all those years ago.

The slate has gold in it, although I am almost certain that it is not gold and that it is in fact “fool’s gold (Iron pyrite).

So, I found a piece of slate with gold on it that wasn’t gold in a place that I shouldn’t have been looking.

So to me the stone represents several things, and not a place that I am travelling to, but lessons that I have learned.

Firstly, some of the most beautiful things are right under your nose, you just have to walk outside to see them.

Secondly, not all of the glitter is gold, that is one of my favourite’s.

Thirdly, some of the most important things and the most precious things I have cost nothing.

I write this blog because a lost stone recently, because it’d tear you up in my office and I put it safely within the tub that my pens are kept in and then couldn’t find it.

But pretended it didn’t matter, but it has been there 10 years and it might be one of the only things that I take out of this office to the new place.

Stupid, isn’t it?

But it is the stories that we tell ourselves about the things around us which matter the most.

Blog Post Number - 2202


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Colin Campbell
Written by Colin Campbell
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