Spiritual Practices: Labyrinth

The pattern on the floor in the center of our round Sanctuary under the dome is a labyrinth intended for meditative walking. Found in different forms in cultures through the ages and throughout the world, the labyrinth is a mystical tradition, one that can lead to greater focus and insight. The labyrinth has only one unambiguous path so it is easy to navigate. There is only one way in and one way out on a winding course that can reflect the pattern of our lives.

Our labyrinth was created after two members of our church, Marilyn Carstens and Patrick Smiley, walked Chartres Cathedral’s medieval labyrinth on a trip to France. Our sanctuary is not large enough for the full 11-circuit Chartres labyrinth, but Patrick, after five weeks of thought, came up with a way to cut down the number of circuits to fit the building. It is a happy accident that there are seven circuits (the number of our Principles) and six petals (the number of our Source Traditions, which are displayed on the chancel in the form of six gold disks).

Read the San Jose Mercury News article about our labyrinth.