The labyrinth at Ghost Ranch was made possible by a gift from two persons who felt its healing potential. A cadre of volunteers built it over the course of the summer of 1998.
The labyrinth is a path to the center of the soul. While the path is the same for all who walk it, we carry a variety of religious and cultural traditions, so our experiences are highly personal and individual. As a tool for meditation, an experience for prayer, a trigger for growth, an opportunity for new questions, the labyrinth should be approached with reverence and respect for the journey toward the center.
Labyrinths represent wholeness and unity. Spirals within a circle evoke the movements of life, and the circle itself is seen as a sign of completeness. Hildegard of Bingen defined divinity as “a circle, a wheel, a whole.” Hugh of St. Victor said, “When we lift up the eyes of the mind to what is invisible, we should consider metaphors of visible things as if they were steps to understanding.” Dante describes the winding path through Inferno in labyrinthine terms in The Divine Comedy, when he writes, “Midway along our road of life I woke to find myself in a secret dark wood, for I had lost the narrow path…Yet there I found my path of good, so now I’ll tell what else it brought. I cannot rightly say how I came there, I was so drugged with sleep the moment when I lost the true way, wandering unaware.”
Don’t expect anything to happen… The experience may have immediate impact on you, or it may seem remote. Spiritual practices are disciplines; rewards follow preparation, repetition and reflection. There are no promises of revelation, but we are inspired by Augustine’s insight.
Whole, but unending… The labyrinth is in itself complete, but its story has not been fully unveiled. You are welcome to contribute to the story by leaving a memento of your journey, but please do not remove anything from the labyrinth or the surrounding area once you are done.
Be sure to ask for more information about the Labyrinth at the Welcome Center.