What is the definition of a Pilgrim and why does my phone want to capitalize it? According to Webster Dictionary, a pilgrim (without the capital P) is “1. a person who travels about; wanderer 2. a person who travels to a shrine or holy place as a religious act 3. Americanism: (P-) any member of the band of English Puritans who founded Plymouth Colony in 1620.” By this definition I am definitely not a Pilgrim (though some have accused me of being puritanical.) ?
Peace Pilgrim said that her pilgrimage was for the cause of peace, rather than to a particular place. I have called myself Earth Pilgrim because I see my pilgrimage as for the cause of the Earth, or the environment. This is true, but my pilgrimage is also for peace, beauty, love and goodness.
That our American government has once again taken the bait and used violence as a means of combatting violence is evidence that we are still caught in the strange belief that evil can be overcome by more evil. “An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind” is a quote by Gandhi that has yet to be taken seriously by the powers that be. And so it is.
I understand that some are marching today to protest the recent attack on Syria, another type of pilgrimage for a particular cause. I am with them in Spirit.
This wanderer is still not able to walk long distances, though she continues to get better each day. How could this have happened?? I ask myself. I felt so sure that this was my calling, and I still do. I felt ready and able to walk a thousand miles or more! What is my God trying to tell me?
I mentioned in a previous post that I am reading a book about St. Francis, another pilgrim of sorts. In it, the author, Murray Bodo, states that
“Francis’ heart always beat faster when he recalled those three openings of the Gospels:
“If you wish to be perfect, go and sell all your possessions, and give to the poor… and come, follow me.”
“Take nothing for your journey, neither staff nor knapsack, shoes nor money.”
“If any man will come after me, let him renounce self, take up his cross and follow me.”
I don’t think I wish to be perfect, but I do want to continue on this journey. Could it be that my foot is trying to tell me that I need to be more like a true pilgrim, one who literally takes nothing with her? I have said that I am walking on foot and on faith, but am I really when I bring everything I might need for any possible occasion? Walking on faith means that the pilgrim trusts his or her Higher Power, however he or she understands it, to provide what is needed in any circumstance. That is what gives the pilgrim the courage required to even start on the journey. Bringing a backpack, tent, stove, etc. is proof that one does not have the required faith to be set free from the bondage of self-reliance.
Do I have the courage to truly walk on Faith? Am I a true pilgrim? I am seeking the answer.