Labyrinth at First Unitarian Universalist Society of BurlingtonA labyrinth is a tool in the quest for healing and wholeness. It engages the body and allows the mind to rest and reflect. It is a metaphor for a spiritual journey. For centuries it has been used for meditation, prayer, personal and spiritual growth, ritual, and initiation. It is a unicursal path that leads into the center and back out. Use the labyrinth to connect with your body, your heart and your soul. By turning inward we allow our mind to relax. The style of our Labyrinth is a seven circuit Cretan or Classical Labyrinth. This pattern dates back to Crete in 500 BC and has been found in almost every culture and time period. The Hopi people have it as their symbol for Mother Earth. It is located in the middle of the southwest lawn under the ash tree and is available for walking anytime unless it is covered with snow or ice. The permanent labyrinth was dedicated and blessed on Sept. 7, 2014.

Walking the Labyrinth 
• As you enter and exit the Labyrinth, pause and make some form of gesture acknowledging your walk.
• Become aware of your breath. Clear your mind. If you choose, you may focus on an issue you need to resolve.
• Walk as quickly or as slowly as you like, allowing your body to find its own pace.
• If other people are walking the labyrinth you may pass people or let them step around you, which ever is easiest.
• The path is two ways, going into the center and out again. People walking back out from the center will be walking toward you as everyone walks the same path in and out. Don’t worry, you are not going in the wrong direction.
• There are no “shoulds.” Do whatever seems right. Whatever thoughts and feelings you have are the ones you are meant to have during your walk.

Labyrinth at First Unitarian Universalist Society of BurlingtonThree Stages of the Walk
Releasing – As you walk to center, a time of shedding, letting go, surrendering and opening.
Illumination – In the center receiving Spirit’s light and/or touching the light within.
Integration – Walking back out bringing insight, light and gifts into the world.

Labyrinth at First Unitarian Universalist Society of BurlingtonThe Labyrinth Ministry maintains the labyrinth to provide a variety of opportunities for Society members of all ages, as well as community individuals and groups, to use the labyrinth. Guided labyrinth walks, talks/presentations, workshops, information dissemination and spiritual and healing circles.

• Labyrinth Sundays on the second Sunday of the month, weather permitting. Members of the labyrinth ministry are available after the service to guide you on your walk.
• Equinox and Solstice Celebrations – community walks

Labyrinth at First Unitarian Universalist Society of BurlingtonOther Uses for the Labyrinth’s Sacred Space

• Celebrate weddings, birthdays, baptisms, and ordinations
• Conduct services and healing rites
• Mark the passage from childhood to adolescence
• Mourn the losses of loved ones, animals, jobs, etc.
• Welcome in a new stage of life, a new job, a new relationship
• Celebrate the passage of the season at solstices, equinoxes and new moons.