Sunnylands Labyrinth

A guest blog
by Teri Petrzalek

Background Information:  Sunnylands is the 200-acre estate outside Palm Springs of Walter and Lenore Annenberg. In 2001 they created a trust fund to “address serious issues facing the nation and the world community.”  A 25,000 square foot, Mid-Century marvel, this peaceful oasis is set in the center of a 9-hole golf course. The property is now used for retreats as well as high-level summits.

A visitor center was constructed at the entry and with it several breath-taking garden vignettes. As we toured the gardens, the tree-lined path around the great lawn opened to a clearing which contained a labyrinth. The 7-circuit path was wide and separated by low plantings.

I told my friends to continue on the main trail without me and I would catch up. I paused at the start to set my intention. “Release Worry.”

The wide paved path seemed to convey an ease, a peacefulness in an otherwise crowded place. The turns seemed more pronounced because of the plantings and the beauty of the spot was undeniable.

I walked more quickly than I usually do, hoping to reach the center before anyone else appeared. The labyrinth reminded me of the estate, grand but made of simple pieces. The structures had little ornamentation. That was provided by the plantings. At the center of the labyrinth I closed my eyes and breathed deeply. I could smell the faint aroma of something thyme-like.

PalmSprings_CAThat made me smile. Thyme. Time. Wasn’t that what I’d been worrying about? Time.

I tried to follow my breath on the way out. In – relax, out – release as I returned to the entry. It was early enough in the morning that there were still shadows on one side. So, I kept moving – in and out of the darkness. Truly an oasis in the desert.

About marionpatterson

From the Heartland: Marion is a master educator, writer, Veriditas Trained and Certified Labyrinth Facilitator, a member of the Veriditas Council, creator and workshop promoter, and environmental educator. A Holy Fire II Usui and Holy Fire II Karuna Reiki Master Teacher, Healing Touch Spiritual Ministries Certified Practitioner (HTSM-CP), Advanced Integrated Energy Therapy practitioner she seeks to connect with others in their knowledge and spiritual quests. She leads Healing Talking Circles using the principles embraced by indigenous populations and in Restorative Justice Circles. She and her husband, Rich, co-own Winding Pathways LLC and live in Eastern Iowa. "Encouraging people to create wondrous yards." Go outside and Play!
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