What is a Labyrinth?
The Labyrinth is a pattern that has a single, circuitous path which leads both in to its center and back out again. This meandering path becomes a metaphor for life’s journey, touching people wherever they are on that journey. Those that walk the Labyrinth’s contemplative path are ushered into a safe, spacious place where peace and wholeness are possible.
Why Walk The Labyrinth?
There are as many different reasons to walk the Labyrinth as there are people. The activity of walking engages the mind, body, and spirit while enabling the walker to rediscover the depth of his or her intuition, creativity and discernment. When walked with an open heart, the Labyrinth can take a person to the deepest and highest spiritual places within, lending itself to both individual and communal purposes such as:
- Releasing both mental and physical tension
- Finding clarity, discernment and guidance
- Enlivening creativity and imagination
- Honoring significant life events such as birthdays, graduations, weddings, anniversaries or baptisms
- Healing & Grief work
- Meditating or praying
How do I walk the Labyrinth?
Although there is no right or wrong way to walk the Labyrinth, the following is one method of Labyrinth walking that some have found meaningful:
The Four Fold Walk
Reflect – At the threshold of the Labyrinth path, pause to center yourself – to remember who you are and who you wish to be. You may want to choose a specific intention to focus on while you walk the Labyrinth.
Release – On the journey in, allow your heart, mind, body, and spirit to unwind. Let thoughts and emotions flow freely. Let go of anything that would block you from experiencing peace and receiving what you want and need on this walk.
Receive – In the center, rest. Sit or stand, open and ready to receive the insight and resources you need. Allow images, feelings, or words to move you closer to the clarity, discernment, healing, and peace that you seek.Stay as long as you wish.
Return – On the journey out, allow the walk to integrate your new insights and inspiration to empower you. Allow images to take shape of how these insights and this inspiration might look and feel as you walk back into your world.
Remember that this is only a suggestion; the Labyrinth experience is different for everyone. Sometimes walking with intention provides great insight, other times that intention carried in has nothing to do with what the walk becomes, and sometimes the gift received is silence and peace. The answer or solution you are seeking may unfold more completely in the coming days or weeks. Generally, however, whatever needs to happen is what does happen if our hearts are open and we pay attention.
Where are Labyrinths found?
The universal Labyrinth design dates back over 4000 years. Various Labyrinth patterns exist, but most are in the form of a circle and differ from mazes in that they are not puzzles with obstacles or dead ends. Labyrinths have been in place on nearly every continent and in most major cultures and religions since antiquity. They have been found carved in stone, engraved on coins, painted on clay, depicted in ancient manuscripts, and woven into Native American baskets. Some ancient walking labyrinths were formed in mosaic tile, turf mounds, or stones on cathedral floors.
The Labyrinth in the Kaleidoscope Sacred Garden (at 14671 Byron Hwy, Byron, CA 94505) behind the Byron Methodist Church is a modified replica of the 1200 AD Labyrinth pattern found in Chartres Cathedral in Chartres, France.
Who walks the Labyrinth?
People of all ages, backgrounds, cultures, and beliefs walk Labyrinths around the world. Our Labyrinth is open to individuals to walk anytime, groups to walk at a pre-arranged time, and everyone to walk when we have our special Labyrinth events throughout the year. Trained Labyrinth Facilitators are available by appointment for individual or group walks and are in attendance at our special events. Please note the beautiful serene Sacred Garden that surrounds the labyrinth is a wonderful place to relax and renew even when not walking the labyrinth.
To schedule facilitated individual or group walks, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 925-550-8021
We wish you a spirit filled journey!