When you subscribed to this newsletter it promised the dispatches would be few and infrequent, not to overwhelm your Inbox. Indeed, when I last wrote in December it was just ahead solstice and the labyrinth path was one of snow rather than pine needles. I have continued to walk it myself and welcomed a handful of visitors over the winter, though it didn’t become “snowshoes required” (what could be a more Canadian labyrinth experience LOL) until briefly at the end of February. With the new addition of some multi-colour lanterns, evening walks in winter were quite magical.
The dense white pine forest is sheltered and insulated, and so it was only a week ago that the last of the snow left the labyrinth. The path has now dried and spring labyrinth walks bring wondrous sensory inputs of forest scents, a soft bed of pine needles underfoot, and bird song all around. Another spring addition: some of you are aware of my fondness for wind chimes in trees, so you won’t be surprised to find an enchanting 7-tone chime hanging above labyrinth centre. The breeze there is light and so the sound is very gentle, just occasional and (I hope) not distracting.
Labyrinth Open to Locals
What a different world we live in since I last wrote. Whether used as a spiritual tool, a contemplative journey, a walking meditation, or simply a peaceful stroll, labyrinths can have a particularly important function during this time we are in. And especially labyrinths set in outdoor natural settings, which may be scarce for some people to access as public outdoor spaces increasingly get closed off.
I built this labyrinth to share, and if ever there was a time to make it available it is these days. However, I want to do so in a socially responsible way.
- As always, please arrange your visit in advance (no need to pin down a time, just pick morning/afternoon/evening), which will also ensure you don’t inadvertently come into contact with others.
- Maximum visitor group size is now 5 and they should be people you live with or otherwise strictly observe social distancing—which should be easy enough on a large outdoor labyrinth with wide paths.
- I don’t want to encourage people coming up here from the city or travelling across the region, so for the time being labyrinth visits are limited to folks from the local area.
An Inspiring Read for These Times
It’s not labyrinth-related, but if you could do with reading something that is inspiring and motivational but at the same time realistic and pragmatic I encourage you to check out Margaret Wheatley’s books. For more on her message of decency, gentleness and bravery, read the post titled “At this time, who will you choose to be?” on my blog page at SoulTrail.ca
More labyrinths, more reading
Maryann, publisher at the Ginger Press, asked if I would contribute a series of local labyrinth profiles throughout this year’s series of Grey-Bruce MOSAIC magazines. The first one, in the April edition, is about the lovely Cedar Grove Labyrinth in Thornbury. MOSAIC has been temporarily suspended during this COVID time but watch for other great local labyrinths to visit in future issues. For the time being, if you’re looking for light reading there are interesting bits and pieces to be found by randomly choosing a MOSAIC back issue from 10 years of archives. Or dig your teeth into something more with one of the local titles (“Read Local Grey Bruce”) available from Ginger Press.
Warm regards from here to there, Neil