At the summer solstice, I met with a small group of friends to walk our local labyrinth. It was a warm, dry evening and we walked in silence to the centre then back out again, mindful of our steps.
Yesterday evening, we met again at the labyrinth to walk on the winter solstice. New people joined us to mark the return of the sun, many never having walked a labyrinth before. Actually, most locals have no idea that there’s a brick labyrinth tucked away in a small park, aptly named The Grove, in Gosport.
We were blessed with the weather again – another dry and warmish evening – so candles could be lit for the centre (even the good weather couldn’t help my inadequate candle lighting skills – think I used more matches than I lit candles). My friend Juliet came up with the genius Idea of using glow sticks to mark the path. In a short time, my daughter Tabitha, given the important job of glow stick placer, had made the labyrinth light up.
As we walked into the centre of the labyrinth, we did so in the dark but on the journey outwards, we each took a candle and walked out with the light returning.
I loved my summer solstice walk but last night was truly magical with darkness and candle light.
When you walk the labyrinth alone, you can fall into a meditative state but when others walk with you, you gain the same meditation but with the realisation that you are not alone as you follow your path. You pass others by who are further ahead but sometimes parallel. You lead the way for others. You walk in one direction, heading for a collision, only to turn at the last moment so your route is free until you meet up again.
There is a deep sense of connection to your fellow path-walkers, a sacredness binds each other. While your path is yours alone to take, you are spiritually tied to everyone else who is heading towards the centre (the spiritual hub, the Universe, God, whatever you will). As you return from the centre, back to your reality, you are changed. You bring back an understanding, even if on a subconscious level, that we are connected. We are all beautifully unique and we are all one.
I am full of gratitude for yesterday’s Yule labyrinth walk, especially as without the connection of others I would not have had such a deep experience. Particularly, I would like to thank Paul, Tabby, Juliet, Mary and Allison – you made the magic happen.