Title

Labyrinthesis: the Exploration and Construction of a labyrinth at Western Michigan University

Date of Defense

4-27-2012

Date of Graduation

4-2011

Department

English

First Advisor

Nicholas A. Andreadis, Lee Honors College

Second Advisor

Timothy Holysz, Landscape Services

Third Advisor

Gay Walker, Holistic Health

Abstract

The labyrinth is a design that is often underappreciated and misinterpreted. It is often confused for a vast, maze-like structure carved out of hedges. This is usually far from the truth, possibly because few people have had direct experience with a labyrinth. A labyrinth has a singular path, making it ideal for simplicity and inward contemplation. The process of constructing one involved consulting with many people, changing location multiple times, careful planning, and significant labor. After making contact with many people in the community, I have birthed a labyrinth that will progress into a larger peaceful garden. The educational and research possibilities of the labyrinth are plentiful, especially for its location – on the Oakland side of the College of Health and Human Services building - and the piece will ideally draw more traffic to the area. The intent is that it will be a destination not just for classes but also for the entire community. In comparing the existing labyrinths in Kalamazoo, as well as a few others in Michigan, it was determined what would be a unique yet universally designed labyrinth, the intent being that individuals from all walks of life will be able to appreciate and experience the labyrinth. The materials will be primarily brick and stone dust, creating a labyrinth 40 feet in diameter. This labyrinth will serve as a peaceful place for all to enjoy and is the first step in a meditative garden near the College of Health and Human Services at Western Michigan University.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access