What is a Pilgrimage?
There is a pilgrimage for almost any faith, several for the more popular ones. Some come with restrictions– sadly, I will probably never see Mecca. Others, like the Camino de Santiago, have no religious requirements at all and most come with histories as long as their well-worn paths. But a pilgrimage doesn’t have to be religious. A pilgrimage is any journey you take that inspires change in yourself and the world you nuzzle up to as you make your way. What makes a pilgrimage different from a trip is the intention you go with and a daily, conscious show of trust that you will get there, wherever your “there” is. If you leap into the abyss believing, knowing that when you emerge again you will have your solution, you will find your peace, or just an understanding that wasn’t there before, you my friend, are on a pilgrimage.
Never one to do things in moderation, I am preparing to do a year of pilgrimages around the world. My feet will leave their mark in Tanzania, follow in the footsteps of St, Paul in Turkey, walk around Mt. Kailash in Tibet, enter 88 temples around the Shikoku island in Japan as well as trek to Machu Picchu in Peru. In addition I hope to find myself walking in France, Switzerland, Italy, Israel, India, Hawaii and back again in Spain for one more life-changing walk on the Camino de Santiago. In total, I will walk no less than 4000 miles. Look at where I’ll be!