Monday, August 1, 2016

How to Meditate If You Can’t Sit Still - Walk the Labyrinth

Walking Meditation - How to Walk a Labyrinth in San Diego

by Kathleen Lisson

A Labyrinth Path

The first time I saw a labyrinth, I felt my heart beat in excitement, my breath caught in my throat and my attention become thoroughly transfixed. What was inside this undulating pattern on the ground that held the fascination of a very deep part of me, the humanity seed that I share with all of our ancestors? The labyrinth had touched that same space that stares into a campfire and hikes silently in the Yosemite forest.

For me, walking the labyrinth was like receiving a massage for my innermost emotions. Joy peeked out from my soul and tears slid quietly from my eyes. I had found a safe space within myself and room to breathe. When I walked out of the labyrinth everything felt shifted somehow, both settled and looser.

Mindful walking is a meditation practice that can serve as an alternative for when we just can’t sit still or have pain during seated meditation. A labyrinth is a structured form of walking meditation and an excellent place for walking meditations. As a labyrinth facilitator, I have the good fortune of owning my own canvas labyrinth. My labyrinth as well as other San Diego labyrinths are listed at the Worldwide Labyrinth Locator. If there are no labyrinths near you, a walking path or stroll along the beach can provide many benefits.

Taking a Mindful Walk on the Beach in San Diego

We can make our next walk a mindful walk in three easy steps.

  • First, take a moment to feel our body before we start walking. Follow the breath in and out of our body and feel the weight of clothes on our skin and the feeling of the ground on the bottoms of our feet.

  • Secondly, as we walk, focus on the feedback from our body. How does the pressure on our feet change as we take one step and then another? When our mind tries to take over with stories about the past or future, patiently and kindly turn our attention back to our body. Let the rhythm of the walking bring us back into our body. When I walk the labyrinth, I focus on releasing emotions during my walk to the center, receiving what I need when I am at the center, and reflecting during the walk back to the beginning.

  • Finally, let our walk be our ‘me’ time without distractions and take a moment after the end of our walk to thank ourself for taking good care of our wellness.

Kathleen Lisson is a certified Meditation Teacher and Labyrinth Facilitator and teaches Meditation and Mindfulness at IPSB college in San Diego. Sign up for a private meditation lesson or labyrinth walk in the comfort of your home here:

1 comment:

  1. There comes a time that I created my own labyrinth and I am using it anywhere I go.


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