Walking the Labyrinth on Pilgrimage:
A Few Guidelines to Keep in Mind*
The labyrinth is a pathway of prayer. Like on all pilgrimages, we move with our outer bodies so that our inner self can move with God. This type of prayer allows us to connect deeply with Christ, Our Center.
*For this time of prayer, it will be most helpful to keep your focus on yourself. If you are sensing a need to pray for others, plan to do that later.
*Take a moment before your walk to reflect on where your pilgrimage has led you. Pause at the threshold of the labyrinth and ask yourself and God, “What is my next step?”
*Once you enter the labyrinth, follow the path to the center. This is not a maze; you can’t get lost!
*There are many ways to pray on a labyrinth. Be open to experiencing your experience, whatever it is. There is no need to walk in self-consciousness. You share the same path with others, but you need to walk it in your own way.
*After you enter the labyrinth, find your own pace. It may change during your walk, but whatever feels right in terms of moving slowly or quickly, feel free to do that. you are encouraged to pass people in front of you if your pace is different than theirs. Don’t feel rushed if there are others behind you, let them pass you if they need to. Practice respecting your needs as much as the needs of others.
*Pay attention to what happens on the labyrinth and allow everything you notice to be a metaphor for the larger journey of your life right now.
*When you reach the center of the labyrinth, don’t hurry away. There is room for all of us. Take all the time you want and need to be present to what is happening inside.
*You can’t get lost on a labyrinth, but you can get turned around. If this happens you will end up either in the center or at the threshold. Continue your prayer from there.
*The labyrinth is like a two-way street in that at some point you might meet someone moving the other way. Do whatever comes naturally at that point.
*When you return to the threshold of the labyrinth, take a moment to thank God for what you have received.
*Take time to reflect on what has happened and what you want to remember. What has started in this time of prayer may continue in the days and weeks (even years) ahead.
Philippians 4:6-7 Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
*This was originally shared with a group of pilgrims to the Chartres Cathedral before they participated in a labyrinth walk there.
©Jill K H Geoffrion, Please use the contact form to request permission to use.