There is a beautiful sculpture of Jesus ascending in Wells Cathedral. It is carved from wood, and depicts Jesus as strong and graceful. This is not the usual horrible drooping, hunched up figure nailed to the cross, associated with Christian worship. There is no cross, just a radiant aura. Jesus is perfectly aligned with his arms stretched horizontally, his hands graceful, his toes stretched and pointed, his physique perfect, as he rises. Wrapped around him are bandages (carved from the same block) unfurling as he becomes free.
The bandages unfurling remind me of a spiral. The spiral originally wrapped the bandages round Jesus to imprison him, and then the spiral reverses to unravel. Bandages coming off are also symbolic of a wound healed.
The same process can be seen with the Maypole. Except there are two spirals going in simultaneously in opposite directions! The children spiral round the Maypole on 1st May, the spirit day, getting closer and closer to the pole, the centre, until the bandages or ribbons are tight. To unwrap, the process is reversed, spiralling out the other way.
Labyrinths work in the same way. They are made of circular patterns. Unlike a maze, there is only one route into the centre of a labyrinth, and to get out again, you reverse your path. So the spiral is a form of labyrinth, the simplest form, the purest form. Another well known one is the Troy labyrinth which is carved onto the slopes of Glastonbury Tor, in giant 3D form. You can follow a labyrinth that is laid out on the ground, by walking it. Or you can follow a smaller version that may be carved in wood for example, by tracing it with your finger and with your eyes shut. Or you can trace it within your mind.
Tracing a labyrinth can have a transformative power on your mind as you let go of something, the old, going into the labyrinth, and then open up to new beginnings as you come out. And if your mind is transformed, this will have ripple effects on the minds of others and therefore the collective mind.
When you come out of the labyrinth, you are not going backwards. You are going forwards. It is important to face the other way. The path you follow is the same path, but the way you face and the direction of travel are the opposite. Thus everything will be different. Try walking along a footpath the opposite way to your usual route and you will see what I mean!
A new ritual has recently been laid out on my local field which mimics the labyrinth process. It is not a labyrinth, but has a similar process of a ritual entering of the field, and a reverse ritual to leave the field.
All of these represent an end followed by a beginning. That’s where we are at now, in December 2012.
I had a vision the other day of Planet Earth wrapped in bandages, the bandages getting tighter and tighter as the planet becomes more and more imprisoned. I feel we are now at the turning point, the tightest most wrapped point. The bandages will unravel in a spiral and our prison planet will gradually start to become free and see the light as everything starts to heal. We retrace the spiral, but going the other way, spiralling out towards the light. Everything looks very different when you follow a path the opposite way. This is actually a process in a minds, because the world is created by our collective mind.
As with the labyrinth process, this does not mean we will go backwards to the old ways. We will pass the old ways on the path, but we will see them differently.
It may mean that the Earth spins the opposite way. Or it may not. If the Maypole example is used, we could carry on in the same spin direction to unfurl, by following the opposite set of ribbons.
(See also earlier posts: The Field of Fires, Apocalypse 20.12, The Royal Olympic Fertility Ritual, The The)