Walking the Sacred Path – A Labyrinth Meditation

This weekend I had the blessing of having two of my favorite soul nourishing communities come together. The full moon meditation group that I love so much was able to travel to Columcille (one of my favorite sacred spaces I write so much about) to do a walking meditation and experience the Samhuin celebration.

This was only the second time I have done a walking meditation with this group. And, while I have walked labyrinths before, I labyrinth.jpghave never done so with a group and in this way. It was truly a journey within and a powerful connection with the group.

For those not familiar, a labyrinth looks like a maze but is in fact a beautiful singular path that winds until it reaches a center and then returns the same route. It is not difficult to navigate and is often used for personal meditation. As you walk the labyrinth you journey consciously toward the center (inside yourself) and back again.

I often find walking meditation even more difficult than sitting meditation because of my desire to move. I am a movement oriented, fast paced walking person with a keen sense of my surroundings so I am wildly curious and easily distracted. Recently I have been struggling with a lot of things coming up for me emotionally and physically as I navigate this huge life and career transition. I chose to bring all these struggles and judgment to the walking meditation with the intention to just let it all be there. To create a space wide enough within me to just allow it to be there without judgment and surrender.

Its funny what can unfold in the space of a meditation and what is possible when like minded people converge with their energies focused in a common space. Our walking meditation took over an hour (so much for that preconceived idea that it would take less than 30 minutes) during the chilly dusk. The light shifted around us leading toward darkness. The time seemed to pass in the blink of an eye even as some moments seemed interminably long. The long moments were filled with mental struggle wanting to think, analyze, judge my walk, run away, or be elsewhere to control things. The many moments of ease came when I surrendered to the ease of the moment, the movement, and that sacred space. I could feel the support, love, and energies of the other people walking but it came without attachment, judgment, or explanation.

It always amazes me how simple it can be to surrender yet how difficult. Is it only easy or possible when in a particular construct (meditation, walking meditation, prayer, etc.)? The great spiritual teachings tell us otherwise – bringing mindfulness to everyday tasks. Does it have to be difficult in every day life? What gets in the way? What is different about then than now?

While I certainly don’t have any definitive answer to these mysteries of life, what I was reminded of emphatically on this day by the experience and the words of a dear friend is that there is only moment to moment. Be in this moment, surrender, let go. Then, be in the next moment and do it again. Each moment strings together. Perhaps in the times of transition marked by inner turbulence, that is the change management secret never told – live it and move through it moment by moment.

May this moment be a fully experienced as it is, without expectation and judgment; surrendering to what IS.

Note: A special big thank you to dear fellow journeyer Stephanie for the awesome photo!

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