What is a Pilgrim?

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Being a pilgrim is commonly known as someone who travels to a foreign land to visit somewhere of religious or historic importance. It is also believed that a pilgrim is someone who travels a considerable distance in carrying out this goal.

I always had problems seeing myself as a pilgrim. I am not and was not when walking the Camino religious. I was not brought up attending any church, and when I first walked the Camino I was a student at Ireland’s catholic university – which had me fighting against the church at that time.

However after walking the Camino the last time I felt a bit more like a pilgrim. I had walked from Roncesvalles to Santiago de Compostela. During that walk I carried all my own things for just over four weeks. I became ill, and once I had to be treated in hospital, and for my own private reason it was very important for me to finish – I continued, doctors gave me painkillers in order for me to finish.

So I guess for me being a pilgrim is a state of mind. If I felt like I was on holiday on the Camino I don’t think I would have felt like a pilgrim. I had a task to do, walk to Santiago, and I was quite focused on that task – while at the same time I believed a result of this pilgrimage is that something about me would change – most likely in my mind.

Many people I spoke to on the Camino where looking for answers to their current problems in life, or a way how to make a decision at their current cross road. I don’t know if it does help in that way, however it does give a time out and show that life can go on while those problems still exist.

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4 comments on “What is a Pilgrim?
  1. Catherine Todd says:

    This is the most beautiful, perceptive and on-point description I have ever read about what it means to be a “pilgrim,” and what this road might offer one. I am sure that you have been able to come to these insights because you have walked these roads more than once. Let that be a lesson to us all… the way is the life. Nothing more, nothing less. God Bless.

  2. Leslie says:

    Thanks Catherine.

    I hope you are keeping well, I am currently implementing some of the suggestions you had for the blog, as I don’t get the chance to write nearly often enough.

    keep writing your blog, I have visited a few time and like your writing.

  3. Catherine Todd says:

    Ah, thank you so much! And thanks for my blog compliment. I’m always amazed that people find so much to be interesting there; I just put up whatever strikes me that day. I am very surprised and grateful that people do enjoy it.

    I just responded to another comment you wrote in response to me, but I lost the page and can’t find it. Luckily I had copied my response and will paste it here. PLEASE put a RSS feed button so we can know about updates and new comments! Here goes:

    Dear Leslie,

    Thank you so much! It’s a good thing I checked back here to find your comment. What a nice surprise! I use google blogger, and it has a RSS feed button that is easily added, for both updates to the blog and for any comments made. I hope you can add something similar to your beautiful wordpress blog. I’m sure there’s something out there with the html code and it’s just pasted on.

    I absolutely love reading this blog; it keeps me sane in many instances on too many days. Three years have passed since you started this? My goodness… and even though my ancestors are Irish and I wish with all my heart one day to see Ireland, you have described the cold rains on a wintry day and I am sure that you, like me, long to see the golden fields of Spain. Write me anytime at my email address if you like. Thanks for everything!

    Yours, Catherine Todd, ctodd1000@gmail.com

    P.S. What do you mean “give [photos] away to flickr?” I have my photos posted there as do many professionals. You can link them to your own website as well. It’s a great site, really.

  4. zack says:

    R u a pilgrim

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