"Your life is a sacred journey. And it is about change, growth,
discovery, movement, transformation, continuously
expanding your vision of what is possible, stretching your
soul, learning to see clearly and deeply, listening to your
intuition, taking courageous challenges at every step along
the way. You are on the path... exactly where you are
meant to be right now... And from here, you can only go
forward, shaping your life story into a magnificent tale of
triumph, of healing of courage, of beauty, of wisdom, of
power, of dignity, and of love."
ancient symbol that relates to wholeness
an archetype with which we can have a direct
a metaphor for life's journey
is not a maze
has only one path
is a right brain task
is a metaphor for the journey to the center of your
deepest self and back out into the world with a
broadened understanding of who you are.
It is a walking meditation
The Labyrinth is a tool for self-growth and personal
In the Middle ages it was seen symbolically to
represent the journey to the Holy Land.
Today many see it as a spiritual tool -- a metaphor for
life and/or agent for global peace
Christians have always had a lively appreciation for
the “path”, both as concrete reality and rich,
The Center the Ursuline Center Labyrinth faces east
where the sun rises, representing new beginnings
This is the classical or seventh circuit
labyrinth. Seven circuits refers the seven
paths that lead to the center or goal. This
is an ancient design and is found in most
It is sometimes dated back more than
The classical labyrinth has an association
with Christianity. A cross is the starting
point used to construct this labyrinth. The
cross at the center can become the focus
for meditation and the experience of the
labyrinth. The classical labyrinth design is
found in many churches in Europe.
The Middle Ages
This was an eleven-circuit design divided into
four quadrants. It was often found in Gothic
The most famous of these remaining
labyrinths is at Chartres Cathedral near Paris,
France. The labyrinth at Chartres was built
around 1200 and is laid into the floor
it could be walked as a pilgrimage and/or for
At the center is a rosette design which has a
rich symbolic value including that of
enlightenment. The four arms of the cross
are readily visible and provide significant
"Palms Up, Palms Down"
These three stages can be symbolized with a "palms down, palms up" approach to
walking the labyrinth.
"Palms down" symbolizes release or letting go while "palms up" indicates receiving.
Enter the labyrinth and walk to the center with palms down and center your
thoughts on releasing conflictual issues and concerns in your life.
When you reach the center turn your palms up to be receptive to insight.
As you walk out of the labyrinth keep your palms up to receive strength and guidance
to make your insight manifest.
As you leave the labyrinth turn to face the center and bring you palms together for a
prayerful end to your walk.
There is no right way to walk a labyrinth.
You only have to enter and follow the path. However, your
walk can encompass a variety of attitudes. It may be joyous or
somber. It might be thoughtful or prayerful. You may use it as
a walking meditation.
Adults are often serious in the labyrinth. Children most often
run in and out as fast as they can in a playful manner.
When you walk a labyrinth choose your attitude. From time
to time choose a different attitude. Make it serious,
prayerful, or playful. Play music or sing. Pray out loud. Walk
alone and with a crowd. Notice the sky. Listen to the sounds.
Most of all pay attention to your experience
1. Focus: Pause and wait at the entrance. Become quiet and
centered. Give acknowledgment through a bow, nod, or other
gesture and then enter.
2. Experience: Walk purposefully. Observe the process. When
you reach the center, stay there and focus several moments.
Leave when it seems appropriate. Be attentive on the way out.
3. Exit: Turn and face the entrance. Give an acknowledgement of
ending, such as "Amen."
4. Reflect: After walking the labyrinth reflect back on your
experience. Use journaling or drawing to capture your
5. Walk often
The Ursuline Sisters had hoped to build a labyrinth on the
Motherhouse grounds for many years
In 2009 Ursuline Center Board Member Jack Donadee put his
engineering degree, artistic eye and the expertise of his employees
at DOT Construction Corp., Canfield, to work—and the hope
became a reality
The design is based on the eleven circuit design found in Chartres
Cathedral, with some adjustments to make it both wheelchair
accessible and nestle into the site just west of the Ursuline Center
This Labyrinth, dedicated Nov.1, 2009, is designed to give the
walker the sense of leaving the world with all its clutter for a while
and going into someplace clear—a place where we can focus on
what is important and put answers to questions
“I walked on the labyrinth today...in the sunshine and the wind. When I got to
the center, I sat down ... enjoying the birds hopping in the bushes...and the
winter sun warming my back. It's almost impossible to walk on the labyrinth
without thinking about God...about life's journey...about being thankful”
Take this bright and shiny year, Lord, and fill it with your love.
Give us the courage to be creative.
Let the child in us always be ready to come out and play.
Sprinkle ideas that are fresh and energetic into our minds and hearts
and let them spill out into kind words...written and spoken.
Thank you for this place...here amid the rocks...in the sunshine.
For the wind, the trees with rustling branches,
the birds singing back and forth songs, the sunlight and shadows,
the green grass popping up through the labyrinth,
the wind chimes playing wildly, the memory of summer flowers,
this warm preview day of spring...for these I'm thankful today...
here in the middle of the labyrinth. All is well. Thank you, God.
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