From ancient times, labyrinths have been a powerful symbol for people. The first labyrinths appeared about 4,000 years ago, in cave paintings and inscribed in stone. They were widely found in Greece, Spain, Portugal, and other parts of Southern Europe.
A labyrinth is not the same as a maze. A maze has twists and turns that can lead to dead ends. At any point in a maze you can several choices of which direction to go, and you may end up retracing your steps if you go the wrong way.
A labyrinth has one pathway that leads all the way to the center, and then you follow the same path back out to the entrance. Since there is only one path, though it may wind back and forth through several twists and turns, you cannot get lost in a labyrinth.
There are two main styles of labyrinth: the 7 circuit and 11 circuit designs.
In prehistoric times, it is believed that labyrinths were used to trap evil spirits, or possibly as a pathway for ritual dance.
In medieval times, the labyrinth was a symbol of a single path to God. The entrance symbolized birth, and the center was the destination: Source, or God. They were also used as a substitute for those who could not go on pilgrimages. Through prayer while walking the labyrinth, one might receive the same insights and salvation as those who could make the more costly journey to the Sacred Lands.
In modern times, labyrinths have enjoyed a resurgance in popularity. They are used today as a form of entertainment, or for meditation. It is a powerful method of quieting the mind, symbolizing the journey of going within to access the peace and wisdom that each of us has access to.
Walking the Labyrinth Guided Meditation takes you on a journey through a 7 circuit labyrinth. Each turn of the labyrinth accesses and awakens a different chakra (energy center) in your body, until you get to the center and the place of quiet wisdom inside.
Walking the Labyrinth Guided Meditation