Friday, September 18, 2009

Jewish meditation and the labyrinth

Boston College Memorial Labyrinth

I just came across a very interesting little article that reports on the growing use of labyrinth meditation by members of the Jewish faith. At least one synagogue has built a labyrinth on its property for practitioners to use:
"There's nothing not Jewish about a labyrinth," said Rabbi Jeffrey Arnowitz, the synagogue's associate rabbi....

"In fact, there's something incredibly Jewish about them, this whole idea of wandering. We spent 40 years in the desert wandering. For the Jews, it was more important to wander and learn what you had to learn wandering than it was to get to the goal. That's ultimately what the labyrinth is all about."

Arnowitz already has used the winding path as a tool during spiritual counseling sessions, and has plans to use the route for services in the future.
Someone who left a comment on the article said the following:
Labyrinths are not Judaic, Christian, Islamic, or other. Labyrinths are universal. They pre-date Old and New Testaments. Labyrinths' architectural designs contains sacred coordinates. Walking the path, following the many twists and turns, yet maintaining some awareness of the center, is a parable for the journey through this life.
Remember, we have a finger labyrinth here at St. John's Center and there are a number of walking labyrinths you can use in Tulsa. For those who live elsewhere, do check out the location of the labyrinth nearest you and try the practice. It can be very, very illuminating.

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