Experience
the Labyrinth

 

 

 

 

Download Your Own Labyrinth

Chartres Labyrinth Drawing to Download (.pdf 96KB)
Original drawing by Robert Ferre, final graphic by Vicki Keiser.

 


Labyrinths are ancient art forms. They combine the imagery of the circle and spiral into a
meandering but purposeful path. Many people are surprised by the instant rapport they feel with
a labyrinth. Its basic circularity incorporates a universal shape reflected throughout nature and
the solar system. Three dimensionally, the circle becomes a sphere, the shape of atoms, the
earth, the sun, planets, and stars. The circle is in us, and we are in it.


The circle and the spiral have been utilized since prehistory. The seasons of the year form a
repeating cycle/circle. Having no beginning or end, the circle represents eternity.


Walking the labyrinth is like taking time out. During those minutes spent pursuing its circular
pattern, our linear persona takes a break as we nourish the ancient, circular self within. It has
little to do with physically getting anywhere, except symbolically. It takes us away from “doing”
and into “being”.

 

The labyrinth is a place to meet yourself as well as to explore the metaphor of the movement of
life. Sometimes on the path we can see the pattern ahead, and sometimes we cannot, because we
are facing out. During the times of not seeing the path we need to trust and can trust that it will
come back into view again if we just keep walking, one foot in front of the other.


Unlike a maze which functions as a three dimensional puzzle – a construction that alternates
“true” paths and dead ends, and where the builder’s goal is to disorient the person trying to find
his way out, the labyrinth is composed of a series of courses leading to a central point. There are
no wrong turns or impediments to the path.


Walking the labyrinth brings body and spirit together by breaking down the distinction between
activity and contemplation, and encouraging us to consider everyday activity – even a simple
walk – as an opportunity to allow ourselves the simple gift of peace and tranquility as we
quietly take the time to be present.