ANSD is a network for those interested in spiritual direction, and as such, offers the portal of resources for those people working as Spiritual directors and Supervisors and those interested in Spiritual Direction.
Over the next few months, we will be posting resources that are being made freely available by our ANSD members. If you would like to contribute please contact Robyn
Training programs in Spiritual Direction and Formation
For further information about formal training programs in Spiritual Direction and Formation, visit the Australian Ecumenical Council for Spiritual Direction (AECSD).
The Labyrinth and Spiritual Direction
What does a labyrinth have to do with Spiritual Direction?
Many people find themselves unable to pray with words, or find praying as they walk very helpful. The labyrinth provides an avenue to explore different ways of praying – for example creating a pilgrimage to the centre. It can be a way to pray through specific events. For example, if you are wanting to celebrate a mile stone, or let go of grief or some other concern, it offers creative paths to do this.
A labyrinth differs from a maze. A maze is a puzzle, and you can find yourself in dead ends and you need to solve the puzzle in order to find your way out. Labyrinths, on the other hand, although there are many differing patterns, always have one path in and the path out is via the same route. It means that the labyrinth is not a puzzle at all, but rather a path that leads you to the centre via many turns.
The labyrinth can be seen as a metaphor for life. As we walk, we may be brought close to the centre at one stage and we can think we have almost made it, then suddenly the path can then lead us way out onto the outskirts. Or we may feel lost at some stage. But we are never lost – all we need to do is put one foot in front of the other and we will be eventually led to the centre. It can be seen as the embrace of God – that no matter how we are feeling or where we are in life or how disorientated we may feel, God’s embrace is always there. Yet this embrace doesn’t trap us – we can leave the labyrinth at any time.
Labyrinths have become a valuable aid to healing for those who are ill, as well as friends and relatives of those with serious illness or experiencing loss of any sort. Many places such as hospitals, hospices and community gardens have begun to build labyrinths.
For more information about walking a labyrinth watch this video:
Lucy’s Tip Series
Sister Lucy Tierney ‘Tip Series’ are designed to deepen and enrich inner journeying through personal response to inner invitations that take a person into the virgin territory of his/her own inner landscape.
This series offers a wonderful resource for people in general, or spiritual directors perhaps when directees express inner arisings. These tips are very short snippets that encourage balancing what is out of balance. They include the following feelings and desires:
Lucy also offers her Experience Living Purposefully for those wishing to undertake a retreat in daily life. These include:
Series One: Inklings. “Who am I?” inviting you to be in touch with who you are.
Series Two. Balancing: “What is my purpose?” enabling you to harness your inner energies to set positive goals.
Series Three. Freedom:“Who can I become?” empowering you to activate your potential.