At the end of all her journeying, the pilgrim* finds herself at the centre of her “soul,” knowing herself for the first time** – soul at least meaning the absolute entirety of everything she is.
After all the travelling of pilgrimage this is where we come to: the discovery that the things we were searching for are more in here than they are out there. Perhaps this is the place we are most fearful of looking.^ How often do we believe the thing we seek is found in some new experience or circumstance or job or relationship or possession? But so often it is the desire to know and contribute my whole heart to something?
Towards this, here’s a summary of the pilgrimage which brings me back to the beginning:^^
The pilgrim passes through a portal from what is known into what is not known: to know more of the world, others, and the future Self.
On the other side of the portal we must choose a path of aliveness which may not exist; we may travel this with others or have to walk it alone, but every path is ultimately about bringing aliveness to others.
Pilgrims are movement-people, seeking to bring their greatest aliveness to each day.
We are becoming people of permission, encouraging people to explore the future.
Pilgrims struggle with their monsters within as they journey.
We also avoid shamming – telling ourselves lies about our lives.
Pilgrims know they must live with responsibility towards their world, to others, and to their future Self.
We use playfulness and gamefulness as means of opening up serious matters, and because we want to enjoy the journey together.
Pilgrims are open to be changed by the very best people and ideas – and they guard against the trivial.
We understand we have a contribution to make to the great conversation or story.
Pilgrims keep moving on their path-which-does-not-exist, no matter what.
We know we must keep identifying the things which are most important to us, because there are so many possibilities to distract.
(*I use pilgrim and pilgrimage in a Human sense, that we are all travellers from something, to something, and we use outward experiences to enable inner transformation.)
(**Humans are creatures of endless depth and development, so, perhaps there’s an endless number of these first times.)
(^We can be afraid to look within because we often experience ourselves in isolation – including how we are different to others, rather than like ourselves – but solitude is different to isolation, and means it is possible to be very happy in who we are and know we have something beautiful to contribute.)
(^^Apologies for all the mistakes – these pilgrimage blogs were written quickly on phone or iPad with poor internet. They are now tidied and re-presented.)