I was walking along The Beaches of Toronto with Sweetheart when we came across a classical labyrinth set out in the sand. Labyrinths have been used as symbols of our inner journeys. They can also be powerful settings for a wedding ceremony.
Labyrinths have been used for over 4000 years as meditation and prayer tools. A labyrinth is an ancient symbol that relates to wholeness. It combines the imagery of the circle and the spiral into a meandering but purposeful path. The labyrinth represents a journey to our own center and back again out into the world. Whenever I walk a labyrinth, such as the one I encountered in Toronto, I leaving with a deeper understanding of myself and my life’s journey.
The symbolism of the labyrinth lends itself beautifully to the marriage ceremony. The journey into the center is a time for letting go of the past and preparation for what is to come. The bride and groom walk into the labyrinth individually, affording them time to release any past obstacles that may be in their way and to become fully present by the time they reach the sacred space of the labyrinth’s center.
The center represents the sacred ground of the heart. Here, the wedding ceremony takes place as the two join their lives through the ritual exchange of vows and rings.
Once the ceremony is complete, the couple join hands and together walk a path that spirals them back out of the labyrinth. This part of the experience represents their union, where they emerge from the labyrinth, beginning a new aspect of their journey together as husband and wife.
They leave the ceremony with a blessing to remain true to the winding path in life, no matter which way it turns, knowing that they have chosen to walk it together. May they always come back to the center of the circle, together in love.