Walking The Labyrinth

The image you see is a labyrinth. The term labyrinth is commonly understood (and, one might even say misunderstood) to be synonymous with the concept of a maze: a complex and confusing network of entries and exits with many intricate passages and blind alleys. A place where one can become lost and confused. But look again at any labyrinth image, and you’ll notice there is but a single, unambiguous path leading to the center and back out.

The topological differences between a maze and a labyrinth hint at the deeper spiritual implications for our orientation toward life. The very idea of a maze is to confuse and confound aspiring puzzle solvers and to reward those who succeed with only the short-lived satisfaction of achievement.

A labyrinth, by contrast, invites any and all to walk a curving path of twists, turns, and switchbacks toward an unknown destination with a reward that transcends achievement. It is not a puzzle to be solved, but a mystery to be lived. In a very real sense, walking the labyrinth is a courageous act of faith. The act brings to mind the old English slang word, coddiwomple: to travel in a purposeful manner toward a vague destination. Little wonder then that labyrinths show up in some form in nearly every culture and spiritual tradition dating back thousands of years.

For the Stagen community, the labyrinth invites (and inspires) an exploration to the deeper responsibility of leadership. Are you on purpose, faithfully walking your path, seeking the center you know is there but cannot see? Or, are you struggling to find your way, confounded and confused about which direction to go or where the road ahead will take you?

Life can either be a bewildering maze of dead ends and wrong turns or a purposeful journey of discovery and meaning. It ultimately depends on your choice of orientation, so choose wisely.