Centennial Parklands unveils landmark labyrinth
Article by Jessica Clement, Wentworth Courier, 18 September 2014
A spiritual sanctuary based on a 700-year-old design has been unveiled in the centre of Centennial Park. The park’s $500,000 labyrinth project, described as being without peer worldwide, was opened by representatives of 11 different faiths and Governor Dame Marie Bashir.
The Centennial Park project is the brainchild of benefactor and chief fundraiser Emily Simpson, who first approached the park’s trust with the proposal three years ago.
Ms Simpson, of Paddington, said she had met a stranger in an airport terminal in Albuquerque, New Mexico who had told her to visit the labyrinth inside San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral.
She did so and promptly fell in love.
About 1500 sandstone pieces make up the design, based on the Chartres labyrinth, located in France.
A labyrinth is not a maze as is commonly thought. It has a single path with no dead ends and has proven mental health benefits. Labyrinths are an ancient tool, used for contemplation, reflection and meditation.
Ms Simpson said the labyrinth would become a place for reflection and meditation, a spiritual salve in the centre of Sydney’s iconic green space.
“This is a place people can come in times of anxiety, confusion or sorrow and walk their way to the clarity of the bigger picture,” Ms Simpson said.
“It’s a landmark only comparable to the original,” she said.