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Archive for June, 2012

This has been a ‘spirit guided’ journey, one which began in 2000 just prior to our move to South Glengarry. In June of that year Jim and I attended a retreat called “Take Your Soul to Work”, a gift we gave to one another in celebration of our 27th anniversary. During one of several meditations we experienced, Jim received a message that he was to build a labyrinth. This was very exciting except that, he did not know what a labyrinth was and had little understanding of its purpose or its history.

The journey continued. Jim researched the topic. He learned that a labyrinth is a ‘unicursal’ maze, meaning there is only one way in and one way out. Labyrinths date back to the beginnings of humankind and can be found in almost all cultures around the world. The ancient Greeks wrote about them in their myths. Some of the great cathedrals of the world have them imprinted in the floor, for example the Chartres Cathedral in France. Aboriginal peoples such as the Hopi used them for ceremony.

Today, labyrinths are experiencing resurgence around the world, as a symbol of peace, for walking meditation, to build community and more. The ancient has found its way back to the present.

Prayer Flags in the Fairy Garden

Returning to Jim’s vision, once he learned more about what he was being asked to create, the next step was to identify a labyrinth pattern. There are many traditional patterns and the first winter at TighShee (the name of our home and property) we built the complicated Chartres pattern in the snow. It was clear that this was not perfect and far too intricate for us.

The following summer, as the exploration continued, a labyrinth pattern came to me in a meditation (this meditation stuff is powerful!). I drew it out and offered it to Jim. It was clearly atypical, totally unlike any labyrinth pattern Jim had seen in his research. The following winter, we tried again, this time building the new pattern in the snow. Intuitively we knew this was perfect. On June 8th 2002 building began and over the next week the labyrinth was built.

What emerged after that has been an intuitive experience in which the surrounding gardens took form. As novices, we had a lot to learn about plants and creating gardens. Most of the design was left to Jim and as he tapped into the earth energies, a series of gardens emerged around the labyrinth and the many trees that are found on the property. The effect is rather magical as there are no corners, only curves. Plant choice was left to me and there have been a few plant mistakes along the way – all part of understanding light and shade, soil composition and simply said, energy.

Irises

On the event of the 10th anniversary, 40 people joined us to walk. There have been many magical moments here at TighShee (House of Peace) and clearly this was one of them. With friends we have known for 20 years or more and friends who we met for the first time that day, we felt blessed. The blank canvas we were gifted when we purchased the property 12 years ago has come alive, not only with the gardens and the labyrinth, but with the community that is emerging as a result.

Dreams do come true. When dreams are founded on intention, the desire to be of service and create a space where visitors realize that they are allowed to simply be who they are, the result is community. In the last ten years, we have hosted twenty or more labyrinth walks. Each one is unique. Sometimes there are five people and sometimes forty. We always know that whoever attends are the perfect people to be there and we never question what happens.

This last event however, was undoubtedly the most special of the events, with drummers and singers and plenty of celebration. It was one of those moments when folks come together and connect ‘in spirit’,  and this, in my experience, is the most powerful connection of all.

Abundantly Yours,

Betty

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