One way to work with the classical seven circuit labyrinth which I have discussed previously is to equate the paths with the seven chakras. Over the years, this has proved to be a very effective way to work with any issue that might be on your mind. But now we come to the Classical Eleven Circuit Labyrinth, which was especially popular in Scandinavia. It was used, like the seven circuit one, by fishermen before they went out in their boats.
Of course, one can just walk this one - or any labyrinth for that matter - in a meditative mind, and see what comes up, but there are other ways to use it which get more specific answers to specific questions. But first:
Like the Seven Circuit, one can correlate these numbers with their corresponding notes, and see what the melody is. Start with the note A (440) on the outside path, and move up the piano keyboard using all white and black keys until you get to G# in the goal.
Notes from the outside in:
A - A# - B - C - C# - D / D# - E - F - F# - G - G#
5 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 1 - 6 / 11 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 7 - 12
Corresponding Musical Notes
C#-A#- B - C - A - D / G - E - F - F#- D#-G#
If you look at a piano keyboard, from any given note (let's say Middle C), and go up to B the note just below the octave at C' (C prime), you will see that there are seven white keys and five black keys, the sharps or flats. Notice in the order of the notes above, the black keys (the sharps) are all at both ends of the progression and all of the white keys are together in the middle. I am not exactly sure what to draw from this other than to say that this seems quite unusual and totally unexpected!
The Twelve Signs of the Zodiac
A method that I have recently devised is the use of the twelve signs of the zodiac in astrology to gain clarity on any given issue. Number the paths from 1 to 12 - again numbering the outermost path as 1 and 12 in the goal. Then, start with Aires, the first sign of the zodiac in the outermost path, and work inwards, one sign per path at a time, to the goal, where one finds Pisces.
Classical Eleven Circuit Labyrinth
and the Astrological Zodiac
Here are the twelve signs of the zodiac in order, starting with Aries. Each sign has two aspects - a positive side (+), which you use on the way in, and a more questioning or shadow side (-) to use on the way out. These are archetypal questions one related to each of the twelve signs.
To use the Zodiac and the Eleven Circuit Labyrinth
Remember, to use this key - again, the Path Order is:
5 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 1 - 6 / 11 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 7 - 12
Going In (+)
At the Mouth - Pause and state the Issue, then using the positive questions (+) related to each sign, walk in to path number:
(This may seem complicated at first, but on the next page, I have provided you with a printable crib sheet that you can take in to the labyrinth with you.):
5- Leo - What is the heart of this matter?
2 - Taurus - How can I fix this, nail it down, make it happen?
3 - Gemini - What do I think about this? Where are my dualisms and contradictions?
4 - Cancer - Do I feel safe and secure about this?
1 - Aries - Where/when did this begin?
6 - Virgo - How does this fit in to the scheme of things?
11 - Aquarius -What's my part in the scheme of things?
8 - Scorpio - What do I really want? What's the non-negotiable bottom line?
9 - Sagittarius - What are my long term goals here?
10 - Capricorn - What will others think? In what way am I contributing to posterity, and how will this project be judged by those who know or allocate the money/recognition/support?
7 - Libra - Is there a comfortable compromise here, and how can I reconcile the demands of others vis a vis what I am thinking?
12 - Pisces - In the fullness of time, what's the God/dess' eye view of all this? See what comes to you here. Listen for the God/dess' eye view...
When you hear it, then ask yourself the Piscean shadow question - Have I become lost - Was this all a waste of time?
Going Out (-)
This is the beginning of the evaluation section of you walk. Remember the crap detecting aspect of the seven circuit labyrinth? Here is when you turn it on.
As you walk out, use your rational mind to review the solution you have received and check it out against the (-) zodiacal questions you asked yourself on the way in - only in reverse.
So, "If I go with this solution/plan/God/ess eye view of all this. . ."
12 - Pisces - Have I become lost - Was this all a waste of time?
7 - Libra - Am I avoiding anything here?
10 - Capricorn - Am I just conforming and stuck in some old pattern?
9 - Sagittarius - Am I overdoing anything here?
8 - Scorpio - What do I most dread in this situation?
11 - Aquarius - Might I be excluded by others for this, or leaned on too heavily? In what way can I successfully empower others to take up the baton?
6 - Virgo - Am I a servant or slave to this issue?
1 - Aries - Am I pushing too fast and too far?
4 - Cancer - Do I have any hang-ups about this?
3 - Gemini - Am I rationalizing anything away here? Am I going against my own best interests?
2 - Taurus - Where are the sticking points?
5 - Leo - Have I made too much of a personalized drama of this?
If the answers to the questions you ask yourself give you pause to be not sure of the solution, perhaps Hermes, the Messenger of the Gods, has played a trick on you, and it is not a resolution to trust. But if you can walk out of the labyrinth feeling positive about all of these zodiacal "shadow" (-) questions, Hermes has brought you a good message.
Below is a link to a crib sheet which you can take with you into the labyrinth. This process may, no, will seem confusing at first; however, it is worth the effort as it can assist you in looking at any issue from a number of different perspectives, and allow you to come up with a creative solution that you can then thoroughly check out before you reach the mouth of the labyrinth - where you began.
Download a Printable (.pdf) Classical Eleven Circuit Labyrinth Crib Sheet
This page is an abbreviated version of a new chapter on the Classical Eleven Circuit Labyrinth that appears in a revised version of my book Labyrinths: Ancient Myths & Modern Uses republished by Gothic Image Publications in Glastonbury, England in June 2007.
Thanks to Palden Jenkins for his help with astrological key words, and to Jeff Saward for his magnificent labyrinth drawings.