Several weeks ago, while visiting my sister’s house in San Jose City, we decided to do a “city labyrinth pilgrimage”, meaning, we visited several labyrinths around the city. Not knowing there was one within walking distance to her house, we used it as our starting point.
As I understand, this labyrinth is dedicated to the environment and was built by the Santa Clara Water District. It is a mix of Chartres and Classical labyrinths. The labyrinth was engraved on the floor with figures of leafs and animals as a way to delimit the circuits. A remarkable job was done here. The most interesting thing for me were the inscriptions along the path. As you walk the path, you can see messages craved in the direction of the walk going towards the center. They were messages to reflect upon.
Sometimes life is like that. In our lives, we encounter people, situations or experiences that bring us some sort of clues to continue in our search for meaning. Some people call it synchronicity. The questions I pondered here were: Am I listening? Am I paying attention? Am I willing to let go of attachments, judgements, and fears? Am I willing to sometimes sacrifice comfort?
One of the messages that caught my attention read: “We can never have enough of nature” – Henry David Thoreau. Not because of the wording itself but because whomever craved it on the floor made a mistake.
As I mentioned before, the messages along the path were designed to be read as you walk towards the center of the labyrinth, but this specific quote from Thoreau was carved in the contrary way. I am guessing the person who did it saw the mistake after finishing the job.
The message was carved again over the first one but this time in the correct direction.
What I love about this is that the person didn’t care; he just carved it over his mistake. As you can see on the picture to the right, the “scar” is very noticeable. It was a moment of reflection for me.
In life, sometimes we make decisions which we may see as “bad errors” or “mistakes”. Maybe we don’t even have a qualifier for them. The truth is that sometimes those decisions leave scars, past stories or nick names to which we will always be associated.
My invitation to myself and perhaps to you also, as I reflect upon it, is to thrive and let go of any past actions I have considered as a “wrong doing”. Let go of any judgements. Forgive, forget, accept, correct, fix it and continue on.
As my spiritual teacher John- Roger says: “What choice do we have, but to go on”.