Questions about dowsing as it relates to labyrinths.

After I built my labyrinth someone did some measurements and dowsing and promptly announced that it is not on the leyline, which will negatively influence the energy of the labyrinth. What do I do?

The person you describe has violated dowsing etiquette. Appropriate dowsers don't go around declaring to people the nature of their labyrinth. Rather, they would first ask permission if that is something the person would like them to do. They would ask the same question of the labyrinth itself.

Dowsing is an art, not a science. If you have several dowsers check the labyrinth, they are very likely to come up with different results. Like any intuitive instrument, dowsing can be affected by the dowser's own thoughts, desires, and personal beliefs. So, my first reaction is to advise that a pronouncement by a single dowser isn't an event that necessarily needs your response.

You should know that there are two different approaches to labyrinths. The labyrinth tradition within churches has always taught that the power of the labyrinth comes not from the labyrinth, but from the walker of the labyrinth. In this view, sacred sites are made holy not so much by the ley lines or the water domes or innate energy, but by the people who come in sincere devotion and intention.

Dowsers, on the other hand, tend to take the approach that the power of the labyrinth comes through the labyrinth, from the earth, to us. That is a much more mechanical sort of view. In such instance, the location and the direction and size of the labyrinth are all important factors, leading to your friend's comments..

Perhaps the truth incorporates some of both arguments. I don't use dowsing tools, but I do try to get a sense of the site for a location, which leads me to make certain conclusions. To me, being a pilgrim takes a much greater commitment than just being in the right spot on the earth. As a labyrinth builder, I have a great respect for all of the details concerning labyrinths, including dowsing. But in the end, the labyrinth is just a tool, it is not the objective. I believe that we are meant to use labyrinths, and that we can do that, however they are built and wherever they are placed.

Having said that, I have no objection if a dowser has certain requirements on how he or she would like to build a labyrinth. A dowser friend helped locate a labyrinth in my back yard a number of years ago, in a way that I would never have done on my own. It worked out very well. Still, I find the statement by your dowser to be suspiciously egotistical in a way that may well cloud the result.

Professional dowsers have a very high ethical standard. I remember once at a
conference when a man from Missouri, who had taught himself dowsing and was quite good at it, walked up to Sig Lonegren, a well-known labyrinth person who has written a widely distributed book on dowsing, and said to Sig, "I see by your aura that you are experiencing low energy today." The man was a good dowser, and may have been correct. However, Sig took him aside and told him that however accurate his ability may be, it was completely inappropriate to walk up to someone and make a declaration of that kind. Ethically, he should first ask himself (by dowsing) whether it is his place and his role to say anything. Secondly, he should ask permission. He should say something such as, "I can tell certain qualities of people from their auras. Would you like me to make some observations that I am noticing about yours?" Perhaps even that exchange would lead to a different result.

Without taking such explicit ethical steps, dowsing can be unfairly intimidating. Declaring that you are in touch with some special power and that people should change their lives (or labyrinths) according to the result of your dowsing can be a power trip for people. A very good tool can be thwarted by inappropriate use. I have seen good dowsing, and it is very impressive. I think it is a valuable tool. Once, I took a class on dowsing. At one point in the class, the teacher declared that, in her mind, she was imagining a wall somewhere in the room. Mind you, there was no actual wall, it was just a thought that she was holding in her mind. Of the five students, four of them, including myself, located the imaginary wall. That's impressive. Something improtant is going on there that I don't want to dismiss. But it should still be done properly.

If you believe in the dowsing approach, and you are concerned by the result that was presented to you, I would get a second opinion from a different dowser. If there is corroboration, and you feel it necessary to maximize the rapport of the labyrinth to its site, then perhaps the dowser could ask how that could be done most easily.