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Wednesday, 22 March 2017

The ever-changing path of life....labyrinth style...



In June 2014 a group of friends and I put a classical "Chartres' labyrinth on the land here at Tree House. I then put the information about it on the World Labyrinth Locator webpage. And this morning, just as I am about to move from Tree House, there was a message on my answerphone from someone wanting to come and visit it... How typical of life! The first person ever to ask through this site, and it's covered in weed and not going to be here much longer!

So, as it was sunny this evening, I walked the labyrinth. I say 'walked it', for I - more correctly - gingerly stepped around in the grass and weeds, walking it more from memory than from seeing the path before me....

....which is so like life, isn't it?


I found a stone sitting in the middle of the path, nowhere near a space of a missed stone, so I picked it up, and found myself aware of how it will be nice to take this stone with me to the next house; a reminder of how a plan can come to fruition, and often in the most unlikely of times... To build a labyrinth had been a long, even if not understood, dream of mine, and in 2014, here at Tree House, it happened. So, take this stone and remember never to give up on dreams....



And then each step again gave me reassurance about life: in one part of the labyrinth the path was almost obliterated by weeds and grass - only my toes cautiously feeling out the track giving me any hint as to whether I was to turn 180 degrees on a switchback or to keep moving forwards...


Another part was exactly as I would wish the whole labyrinth to be; stones nestling lightly and visibly amongst smooth, low-growing moss - easy to see where to walk, and soft underfoot...


Then, almost immediately, there was the path, but with the early growth of fierce nettles beginning to fill it... And bramble strands ready to catch in my feet and trip me up....


A little further on the track was visible, but I had to step over large clumps of grass - grass which didn't want to depress under my step, instead to try and turn my ankle if I stood on them... Demanding, disempowering....


And then centre circle, the smooth egg-shaped stone still visible under the new spring growth, but this time of young foxgloves promising an abundance of tall, striking spikes of purple within only a few weeks. Feeding-stations of a thousand bumble bees and other creatures. That the low young plants almost totally obliterated the small white stones placed there by many a labyrinth walker over the last 3 years didn't seem to matter; the messages on them had now vanished - soaked into the soil for ever - leaving their love to be un-removable by anyone in the future. Again, maybe I'll take one or two of these with me to honour and remember all those wonderful people who came to help realise the dream.

So, even 'messy and unkempt' - grassed over, nettles and brambles thrusting forth - the labyrinth still gave me its gift, reminding me of the path of life; sometimes smooth, sometimes easy, sometimes clear. And sometimes rugged, demanding, invisible - only trust taking me forward. Maybe this is the best labyrinth to walk - real, honest, and life-like.

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