A labyrinth is an ancient spiritual path use for contemplation, meditation and prayer. A labyrinth is not a maze. It is a single winding path which leads the traveler to its center, God, or one’s deepest self, and back out again into the world.
Walking a labyrinth is a journey, a quest. Some view the labyrinth as the Path of Life. Some use it as a tool for contemplation and problem solving. Others use the labyrinth as a prayer path to get closer to God and to themselves.
Labyrinths are symbolic of rebirth; of purgation, illumination, and (re)union. Reunion to one’s self, to truth, to God, to clarity.
Here are some suggestions for walking a labyrinth:
Preparing for your walk: Clear your mind as best you can. Pause at the mouth of the labyrinth and take a few slow deep breaths. Remind yourself of why you’ve come to the labyrinth. Hold your intention in your heart.
As you begin to walk: Walk silently and at a comfortable pace. Be aware of your breathing and be mindful of each step. You my encounter others on the path, whom you may pass, or may pass you. Allow each passing to be silent and gentle as you each continue on your own journeys.
Releasing (Purgation) – The journey Inward
As you begin your walk, ask God, Spirit, your chosen Higher Power, to open your heart and to let go of your burdens and obstacles keeping you from feeling peace. Surrender your fears, anxieties, resentments, and all other limitations to the labyrinth. Let the labyrinth hold you while you let go a little more with each step toward the center. As you do this you may feel your mind begin to quiet down and Spirit begin to lift.
Receiving (Illumination) – In the Center
When you reach the center of the labyrinth ask Spirit, God, The Divine, to open your heart, to receive the grace and love that is there for you. Ask to receive your gifts from God and be open to what is offered to you. You may think of the center of the labyrinth like a womb, tomb, or cocoon. Allow the transformation to happen and bring to you New Life. Trust that you will receive what you need. Stay in the center as long as you like to pray, contemplate, relax and open.
Returning (Union/Reunion) – The Journey Outward
As you leave the center feeling a renewed sense of self, love, and hope, begin your journey back out into the world. As you walk on the path outward focus on carrying the gifts you received in the center of the labyrinth back out into your world, to your family, friends, co-workers etc. Notice each step and see how it is different than the walk inward. Notice how YOU are different from the walk in. Feel the support and love that is here for you and Enjoy It 🙂