The Labyrinth: Connection

My path to enlightenment will only come from being connected to the world around me. It’s not just about being centered inside; it’s about being connected to your world.

– Njeri Matheu, “People’s Climate March”

walking labyrinth

Walking a stone labyrinth; used with permission,

No word quite describes the spiritual life and the practice of spirituality for me like “connection.”  It’s not an esoteric or “sexy” sounding word (because all of our important words today should should “sexy”, right?).  Its Latin roots imply a point where two things, usually two people, join or become bound together.  (Hey, that sounds like sex!).  There is even the implication of an obligation to that coming together.  We also have the word “nexus” from this same root.

A labyrinth gives us a way to connect with the earth, with our own bodies, by walking.  One step after another, a labyrinth brings us present.  It drags our scattered attention into a single path.  It helps us see, feel, hear, and remember patterns that may begin to emerge in us as meaningful.

The Labyrinth is a tool, a way to practice a spirituality of connection.  The entering and walking and being in a labyrinth help us practice.  The practice that it helps us with is the finding and rediscovery of connection.  In the best sense, we want to be able to walk around in the labyrinthine journey of our lives LIKE we do in a labyrinth on the ground, open to the connections that are there, waiting on us to make.

Sometime soon, wherever you have the opportunity, walk a labyrinth and give yourself time to soak in the experience.  Then, take that experience into your daily life.  How is walking the path of your life, today, like walking a labyrinth?  What connections do you find yourself making?  Spirituality is not just about being connected to your insides.  It’s about being connected to the world.

Bob Patrick

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