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Maze or Labyrinth: Which Path Are You On?

Maze or Labyrinth: Which Path Are You On?

Spiritual maturity requires that we remain present with what is at any given moment, no matter how difficult or delightful, and the metaphors of a labyrinth or a maze can be helpful for this. 

While often used interchangeably, they hold very different symbolic meanings.

When we perceive our lives as a sacred flow, we tend to trust and relax, despite the ups and downs and challenges, confident that we will arrive where we need to be at the right time. This means we are more aligned with the blueprint of the labyrinth.

On the other hand, when we feel that our path hits constant obstacles and dead ends, no matter where we turn, then we are finding ourselves in the archetypal pattern of the maze. This metaphor highlights life’s unpredictable nature, where choices matter significantly and the path is not always clear.

As we explore the difference between the labyrinth o a maze we realize that one is not better than the other. They just offer different wisdom and insights for the different phases of our lives.

A labyrinth, with its singular winding path, evokes a journey with a defined direction, even when we are not sure what is over the next corner, or how much longer we will have to go around and around. Still, at the deepest level we understand that we are on the path that we are meant to be in, a path that has a sacred and transcendent purpose.

On the other hand, a maze is a complex web of paths with multiple choices and dead ends. Navigating it requires us to be fully present and attuned to our wisest intuition, beyond linear thinking, so we can make it into an auspicious inner moment and eventually become free from entanglements.

Furthermore, walking the labyrinth is a contemplative process, encouraging patience, reflection and inner exploration. It brings the inevitability of reaching a key center in our psyche. We might walk in with a question and we will come out with deeper clarity if not the full answer.

The maze, instead, asks that we are fully alert as we encounter uncertainty, and have patience and resilience as we go through the trials and errors. In the end these learning experiences make us grow so the invitation is to keep an adventurous heart as we go through the maze of life. Whether maze or labyrinth, life brings us both—where each decision shapes the path, yet there is always an underlying sacred purpose guiding the way.

Are you now on the labyrinth or the maze?

 Blessings!

Marcela Lobos

Credit

Alberto Villoldo PhD is a medical anthropologist who has spent the last 30 years investigating the healing practices of the shamans of the Amazon and the Andes. He is the founder and director of the Four Winds Society, and author of Shaman, Healer, Sage, Mending the Past and Healing the Future with Soul Retrieval, The Four Insights and Yoga, Power and Spirit. Alberto is founder of the world-renowned Four Winds Society and of the Light Body School. In his teachings and writings, he shares the experience of infinity and its ability to heal and transform us, to free us from the temporal chains that keep us fettered to illness, old age and disease.

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