The Passion Flower Labyrinth
In 2007 The Labyrinth Builders were awarded a silver medal for ‘The Labyrinth Garden’ at the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. By word of mouth our client heard of and saw images of the garden and commissioned The Labyrinth Builders to recreate the labyrinth in her own garden so providing the perfect permanent setting for this beautiful natural stone labyrinth.
Formed by bespoke ‘tumbled’ sandstone paviors the labyrinth is small (diameter 2.9m) but still fully ‘walkable’. Its three circuits and unusual three fold design is echoed in the flower parts of a mature Passion Flower growing alongside which holds symbolic meaning for the labyrinth owner.
The surrounding courtyard and raised beds are built of the same stone so integrating the labyrinth with the rest of the garden.
Our client, The Rev’d Helen Connoll has kindly contributed the following piece on her approach and experience of walking her labyrinth.
Walking my Labyrinth
I walk very slowly and deliberately. I start with my non dominant foot – for me my left foot – and also breathe in as I place my left foot down. Then I breathe out as I place my right foot down. At the same time I am using the “Jesus Prayer” as a way of focusing my prayers. So as I place my left foot I say (in my head) – “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God and as I place my right foot I say “Have mercy on me a sinner.” This is all complicated to explain but very good to do and brings me a great sense of peace and a sense of Jesus’ presence with me.
My passion flowers growing close by help me to focus my praying and walking as different parts of the flower remind us of the crucifixion of Jesus.
Sometimes I will have a particular concern in my life. If so I might ‘take that’ in to the centre of the labyrinth and then symbolically leave it in the centre with God.
Before I start I pause briefly to focus my thoughts and when I have come out again I turn to face the middle to give thanks for all that I have experienced.
As a Christian I like to use the Labyrinth for prayer. But it can be a good experience for anyone. I would suggest still using the walking and breathing but maybe using a different ‘mantra’ to focus your thoughts – maybe something like ‘peace.’
The Rev’d Helen Connoll, Nonington, Kent, England