Labyrinth Walk on Earth Day

 

Jefri Nazri

Staff Writer

The Campus Ministry hosted a labyrinth walk in correlation with Earth Day last Wednesday, with therapeutic sound by musician, mentor, and spiritual activist Amy McTear.

“I think our natural tendency is to be more focused on the past or on the future. Exams are coming, we’re thinking about last semester’s grades, this is all past regrets, things that happened that you can’t control, and we’re missing out on the present moment. The walk is just an opportunity to become present,” said Cylon George, campus chaplain.

The three-hour-long event was held in Siek Campus Center room 204. Around 60 students, faculty, and staff visited the room, and refreshments were served.

A giant tarp with a labyrinth printed on it was spread in the middle of the room. Participants entered the labyrinth after taking off their shoes. According to George, the labyrinth walk is a mindfulness/stress relief tool that is becoming more popular in the Western world.

Yoga mats and cushions were set up for participants to sit on or lie down and relax. While walking through the path of the labyrinth, soothing acoustic sounds played by McTear filled the room. Among the instruments that she used were a symphonic gong, crystal singing bowls, Native American flute, monochord, and chimes.

“When I learned of her, I thought it would be wonderful to combine these two elements to have mindfulness through walking and sound,” George said of McTear.

While planning the event, George coincidentally booked the room on Earth Day. “We usually don’t appreciate that it supports our life. If the Earth is not functioning properly, we would all be dead, so becoming mindful allows us to realize that the plants out there are supporting our oxygen. If they don’t do that, we can’t live, so that’s how it ties in, to appreciate, be aware, and beyond that, maybe help people take action to preserve and conserve our Earth,” he said.

Amber Vanalstyne, a psychology major, said, “I thought the walk was very relaxing. It was a new experience for me, but I really enjoyed walking through the labyrinth and listening to the calming music that was being played. Finals are coming up, and I think it was exactly what I needed to unwind.”

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