The art of mini-pilgrimage’s
A pilgrimage is a journey or search of moral or spiritual significance.
I’d like to think I’m a pilgrimage junkie, in only the most simple way. It’s more a constant seeking for deeper feeling, deeper meaning in the little moments of our day. It’s also a surrender to a deeper intelligence that I know is around me and just outside of my own limited intellect.
Some people call it presence, meditation, awareness or mindfulness. I just love the concept of a pilgrimage.
The element of surrender to the journey is what intrigues me. Like starting your day with your to do list, but also an openness to serendipity. Being present enough to listen to the person in front of you, to listen to your gut, to take a moment to soak in your environment. The message is just behind the veil of your path, and it’s so easy to miss it if we are only focused on the end goal.
Just like rituals are a large part of any spiritual practice, the repetition and sanctity of the acts that bring awareness, gratitude and repose; the mindset in a pilgrimage is to do the simple tasks of living, breathing and walking without requiring conscious thought to allow awareness on a greater level to all that surrounds us.
Pilgrimages are mostly personal, each lesson is individual even though the journey is the same. Everything is relational to our own story.
My favourite mini-pilgrimages?
A cup of tea — allowing the ritual to take over and see where my thoughts lead.
Morning pages — journalling with no purpose, writing just what comes without grammar, judgment or format.
Going to a coffee shop — seeing if there’s a conversation to be had, a person to be kind to, a song to wake me up, a new idea percolating in their coffee atmosphere.
Library trips — walking around, open to whatever book pops out, or grabs my attention or doesn’t. Maybe it’s just the act of taking time.
Riding the bus — it’s either going to be a ponder wander, or a unique conversation with the person next to me.
Yoga class — oh, what my body can tell me here! Sometimes it’s just the body speaking up, and sometimes it’s a message just waiting to be uncovered.
Taking a different route to work — what pops out? The awareness of everything new opens up new paths and thought patterns.
Napping — is that a pilgrimage? I think we can make it one…a daydream rest state that opens up new consciousness. A day refresher and a thought palate cleanser.
Flipping through a book — see what page it opens to, open it and read it. What is your message? What if flipping pages is just to blow some wind on your face, or clear your chakras (if you think that way)? What if you ask a question and then flip-is there an answer?
Writing a question in my journal at night and sleeping on it.
Scrolling through my contacts and see who stands out, and then calling them.
Spinning a globe, closing your eyes and stopping it with your finger — where are you? Where should you go?
What are some of your favourite mini-pilgrimages?
Share how they affect you, why they feel spiritual or if you’ve had any profound moments in the midst of a common experience.