THE CLASSICAL 7-CIRCUIT LABYRINTH

The classical 7-circuit labyrinth pattern is the oldest and most prevelent of the labyrinth designs. It is at least five thousand years old (perhaps twice that) and can be found all over the world, from Siberia to Summatra. Especially visible have been variations of the pattern in Crete, across much of Scandinavia, and in the American Southwest (Native American mythology).

During the last twenty years, there has been a resurgence of interest in labyrinths in the United States, in both religious and secular contexts. Generally speaking, churches choose the Chartres labyrinth design, because of its association with Gothic cathedrals. Secular and generic uses, however, often use the classical design, including dowsers. Dowsing, usually associated with looking for water, is a much broader discipline which includes the building of labyrinths by asking the earth the proper location, dimensions, etc.

This photo was taken soon after painting. The moisture of the latex paint draws up the canvas somewhat. This soon "relaxes" and lays flat. Rainbow colors are an option, as the standard labyrinth is painted a single color. However, being a 7-circuit design, and the rainbow having seven colors, they are a good match. The eighth circle (center circle) is painted a silver color.

 

The line between religious and secular labyrinths has been rather obscured in recent years, with the Chartres pattern used in public parks and the classical pattern in churches. For example, in working with the elderly or the infirm, the classic labyrinth has fewer turns, is less complicated, and may be more suitable in many circumstances. It is also slightly rectangular in shape, which may be a better fit for a particular space.

The classical labyrinth has lent itself to many design variations, including making the center larger, making a diamond shape rather than a cross, making it round, and so forth. Various choices are included on the order form. To go to the order form, please click here (Classic). We do not have a shopping cart, so you can look just for the information without obligating yourself. See also the place we will make your labyrinth: Studio, and who will be making it: Judy.

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