The Heart of the Vineyard. My son-in-law Jeff, teaches high school Spanish and helped me name the meditation labyrinth. It is a seven circuit classical Cretan Labyrinth which are also associated with the seven primary chakras of the of the body. Chakra is a Hindu word meaning “wheels of light”. They are spiralling vortexes of energy that make up the energy fields of our bodies.
Well, whatever. I walked my first labyrinth at my Mum’s church, Holy Trinity in North Saanich, B.C. Canada, and was astonished at what a peaceful and calming experience it was. I went to my church, donated money in fact, for them to have one, which they eventually did, after I had left the vicinity however.
When we were laying out the vineyard, it became apparent that an area in the southern half near the center of the field, had too many large rock outcroppings try to lay irrigation lines to vines there. I immediately recognized it as a perfect size and place for a labyrinth. Norm built a retaining wall around one half and the outcropping forms the other half. Friend Anne made little stones from concrete left over from her stepping stone workshops, and I gathered pails of rocks from the field. Then one weekend, with the help of Anne (and husband Dan) and friends visiting from Canada, Robert & Maria, we laid out the pathways.
Several months later friends from my church chartered a small bus and came up for lunch, a dedication ceremony, and to walk the labyrinth. I mentioned to everyone that most of the rocks in the labyrinth are just crumbling granite from the field, and if they had special rocks or suitable weather-proof items they wanted to add, that they were welcome to replace an ordinary rock with a treasure. Someone brought a wee garden gnome who now guards the entrance, and other interesting and wonderful items appear from time to time.
It takes about 25 minutes at a slow, meditative pace to walk to the center and back out again. As you walk you must keep your head down to follow the path, and at one point the pattern takes you away from the center of the labyrinth. I feel this is an important life lesson: If you keep your eyes on your path, you will get to your goal, even when it feels like you are moving away from it. Keep your eyes down, trust in the path laid out for you and you’ll reach your goal.