November 7, 2013

Practice Patience as You Walk the Labyrinth

By Margaret Rappaport

Each time we enter the labyrinth an opportunity presents itself. The thought may come in different ways to each of us but it often contains a question. “What is in my heart?” “What are the things that are unresolved in my feelings?” “What will I experience today since I can’t look at everything in my life in a single walk?” “How can I trust myself to find meaning and answers to my most pressing questions?”

When I facilitate a group walk, I suggest to people that they try to embrace, even love their questions. Don’t search for the answers; live the questions! The point is to live now, here not there. Live the questions and be present with your quest. Think of your questions as though they are spoken in a language you don’t understand or barely hear. Tell yourself that answers would not be recognized if you got them. You are still in a questioning phase of your life journey. You’re at the start or at some middle point, not the finish and that may be a reason you’re walking the labyrinth.

Walking the labyrinth is an exercise in valuing the “gradual”. It raises our awareness that, without noticing it, we live our way into our choices and decisions. If we are patient with ourselves and honor our questions, we will, perhaps, find meaningful answers. The resolutions may be near or far but they are often in our future. We can’t know that place and time. We must patiently wait for it.

Walking the labyrinth encourages us, of course, to access our spiritual resources for guidance in our questioning. We may not, however, get answers but only more deeply felt questions. Be patient. Just as the walk requires an attitude of patience; (you will eventually walk out of the space!), so living well and happy is best done in a spirit of practiced patience.

Labyrinth walks are always a friendly reminder of our loves, our limits and our life long need for learning. Try to live and love the gradualness of a labyrinth walk. It perfects the practice of patience which benefits our journeys.

Margaret Rappaport
Veriditas Certified Labyrinth Facilitator