I on Thy path, O God Thou, O God, in my steps. ~Traditional Celtic prayer
The geographical pilgrimage is the symbolic acting out of an interior journey. . . . Our real journey in life is interior: it is a matter of growth, deepening of an ever-greater surrender to the creative action of love and grace in our hearts. ~Thomas Merton
A visitor passes through a place. The place passes through the pilgrim. ~Cynthia Ozick
The Celtic understanding of peregrinatio, a word and concept that is found nowhere else in Christendom [includes] . . . no specific end or goal such as that of reaching a shrine or a holy place that allows the pilgrim at the end of the journey to return home with a sense of mission accomplished. Perigrinatio is undertaken . . . because of an inner prompting in those who set out, a passionate conviction that they must undertake what is essentially an inner journey. . . . Peregrinatio presents us with the ideal of the interior, inward journey that is undertaken for the love of God. ~Esther de Waal, The Celtic Way of Prayer
The purpose [of pilgrimage] is to be in the present moment and enjoy each step you make. ~ Thich Nhat Hahn
Pilgrimage invites us to expect the sacred, waiting to be discovered, wherever we travel. Preparation for pilgrimage requires that we begin, while we are still at home, to watch and listen more attentively even as we are bombarded by everyday life. Begin now to listen and watch for what the pilgrim-poet Basho called “a glimpse of the underglimmer,” and experience of the deeply real that lurks everywhere. The art of pilgrimage is the reimagining how we walk, talk, listen, see, hear, write, draw as we prepare for the journey of our soul’s deep desire. The other component of becoming open to the call of pilgrimage is the practice of solitude. Phil Cousineau, The Art of Pilgrimage (paraphrased)
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where where we started
And know the place for the first time.
- T. S. Eliot, "Little Gidding
May the stars light your way And may you find the interior road. Forward!
~Traditional Irish farewell