LABYRINTH WALK & SILENT MEDITATION
First Sunday of every month
Drop-in anytime between 2:00 and 3:30 pm
Suggested Donation: $5 & Up
Labyrinths have been used for thousands of years, by many cultures and traditions around the world, as a tool for personal transformation.
Labyrinth walks are sometimes referred to as "body prayer" or walking meditation. As a meditation tool, a labyrinth can be a source of solace and can quiet a distracted or overactive mind. When troubled, walking a labyrinth can still your mind enough for you to get the clarity needed to help resolve the problem. As a spiritual tool, a labyrinth walk can be viewed as a metaphor for the journey to the center of your deepest self - and then back out into the world, with a broadened understanding of who you are.
Walking a labyrinth can be a time of simply opening yourself to the Universe, without any particular agenda in mind. Or, it may be part of process to seek clarity around a particular question or concern.
A labyrinth walk provides many benefits. It grounds us in the present moment, giving us a respite from our busy-ness. It quiets and clears the mind, providing focus and calm. It can help in releasing grief, aid in decision making, and give us insight into our purpose in life.
Arrival at the center of the labyrinth, a place of prayer and meditation, allows the guidance of the divine into our lives. When ready, the walk out takes us back into our lives, empowered to transform our lives and actions.
There is no “right” or “wrong” way to walk a labyrinth… but here are some suggestions.
The entrance is an opportunity to pause, reflect, and set an intention for the walk. Stand at the entrance and state your intention as clearly as possible. Center yourself by taking a couple of deep breaths, and allow yourself to become stilled and attentive.
Then, begin your walk, moving at whatever pace feels comfortable. Walking slowly and deliberately can help still the mind.
As you move through the labyrinth, let go of thoughts and preoccupations. Be mindful of the placement of each foot, one before the other. Let your breathing be rhythmic and gentle. Surrender to the activity of attentive walking. Allow yourself to be guided and to trust.
When you reach the table at the center, pause for a while. Feel your body and your emotions. You can pray, meditate, reflect, or focus on what you want to say to the universe. Or, simply stand quietly and let things be. Listen for any responses that may come. Feel the peacefulness.
When you’re ready, move on.
SETTLING INTO SILENCE
After completing the labyrinth, settle into the silent meditation area for as long as you’d like.
A silent meditation is essentially a period of quiet, extended inward reflection, allowing you to achieve greater clarity of mind.
Many people hear the word “meditation” and get discouraged. They think meditation is something complex, with rigid rules and complicated rituals. But you don’t have to know anything about meditation to receive the benefits. This is a place where you can relax and not stress out about “doing it right.”
Silent meditation is about relaxing the mind, in a relaxing atmosphere. The only rule is to get comfortable. Simply sitting (or lying) quietly, while relaxing the mind and deepening the breath, can do wonders for your health and well-being.
When you’re finished in the meditation area, feel free to retrace your steps, walking the labyrinth in either direction, as many times as you’d like.
Finally, carry what you’ve received back out into the world. Accept the insights and gifts you may have received, and offer your thanks.
Thank you for joining us!
QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
Q: I have never done anything like this before. What if I have questions when I get there?
A: Absolutely. Someone will be available in the Wellness Room, next to the yoga studio, to answer any questions you may have. You can also help yourself to some coffee, tea, hot apple cider, or hot cocoa. We just ask that you be mindful of others and speak softly so the voices don't carry over outside.
Q: After I walk the labyrinth, do I have to stay inside the whole time, or can I be in silent meditation outside?
A: If you'd like, you're welcome to go outside on the deck and be in natural surroundings among the old majestic oak trees. Feel free to take a bolster or a yoga mat, sit or lay down, and be in silence with nature!
Q: Can I bring children so they can experience walking the labyrinth too?
A: Sure, as long as they understand that they have to be respectful of others in silence. There is no age limit for our guests to attend, but we do ask that you are present with them so they do not disturb others in their meditation. Children respond immediately to the pattern of a labyrinth. They can also use it for such things as dealing with grief, problem solving, conflict resolution, building community and celebrating joyful events. Benefits have included calming, improved creativity, conflict resolution, problem solving, dealing with loss, and fun!
Q: How many times can I walk the labyrinth?
A: Feel free to retrace your steps, walking the labyrinth in either direction, as many times as you’d like.