By Rev. Ruth Hamilton

The labyrinth at Westminster Presbyterian Church; Courtesy of Author

Did you know the District is home to nine labyrinths, per www.LabyrinthLocator.com? Six of the nine are in Northwest; two in Northeast; and, one here in Southwest. 

On Tuesday, Sept. 15, Westminster Church at 4th and I SW will open to the public to walk the labyrinth–an ancient spiritual tool for personal meditation and reflection. After half a year of being cooped up due to the pandemic, a little bit of contemplation and meditation is something we could all use.

Labrinths trace their roots back to Greek mythology, where its function was to hold the Minotaur, the monster eventually killed by the hero Theseus. Originally designed as elaborate, confusing structures, modern day labyrinths often have unicursal patterns used both in group ritual and for private meditation, and are increasingly found for therapeutic use in hospitals and hospices.

Westminster’s classic 7-circuit labyrinth, a ceramic path laid in the sanctuary floor in August 2001, leads you on about a 20-minute walk to the center and back–a powerful metaphor for our journey as humans.  

There will be two time periods on Sept. 15, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and 6:30-8:30 p.m. during which you can walk or sit and meditate. You may provide your own music with headphones or enjoy the meditative music available. Masks and social distancing will be observed. The event is free. Children must be accompanied by adults.

Every journey starts with a single step; Courtesy of Author

If you wish to remain socially distant or just learn more, on Tuesday, Sept. 8, at 7 p.m. you are invited to a Zoom Labyrinth Launch to learn more about labyrinths, hear insights and tips from those who have walked it, and be inspired for your own walk on the 15th. Contact Rev. Ruth Hamilton at rwh@westminsterdc.org for the zoom info.

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