Walking the labyrinth with a point of reference such as prayer makes a sacred space for meditation and pious contemplation. The time intentionally set aside for praying creates a yearning for an opportunity to connect with the divine while traversing a human space. Encountering the magic and mystery of personal existence leads to joy, meaning, hope and peace as we walk in and out of the labyrinth absorbed by prayer.
When the focus is prayer, walking the labyrinth is a significant statement of faith in God. The walking becomes a journey in Christian symbolism in anticipation of meeting God on the spiraling path of the labyrinth and of life. Walking acts as a meditative service equal to reciting the psalms, canticles and the reading of scripture. Meditation highlights the continuity in time between finite, human experiences and the infinity of God.
It is not unusual to experience encouragement, gratitude for blessings, even startling inspiration while walking the labyrinth. There is frequently increased calm, clarifying insight, release, and rejuvenation and healing. Combining walking and praying yields both dark and light moments just as living does. Being perplexed is followed by joyfulness, confusion follows hope, and sometimes hurt and hope tumble over each other until there is simply curiosity at the power of God’s spirit.
Walking the labyrinth in prayer is like planting a fairy garden with seeds collected from other spiritual events in life. As with any garden venture, at first the garden sleeps, then it creeps and later, God willing, it leaps. That’s is precisely why some people walking the labyrinth start to dance, some get up on tip toes and some are apt to skip. The spirit moves everything: plants and flowers, wind and water, human minds and hearts. All that people have to do is walk and pray.
Margaret Rappaport Veriditas Certified Labyrinth Facilitator