Philosopher Martin Buber wrote: “All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” As I reflect on those words, I am taken back to a powerful moment in a coaching session several months ago – a moment that won’t let go of me. That moment has brought a shift in how I greet each day – seeing my life and work as a pilgrimage.
A “pilgrimage” can be defined as a long journey undertaken as a quest for a specific purpose. It might be or to pay homage to a place, a person, or a belief. It might also be an intentional journey to find oneself. We make a conscious choice to embark upon that journey. And what makes it a pilgrimage instead of just another journey is our intention and focus. We have chosen to walk this path. We have chosen to walk with awareness.
Many spiritual traditions embrace the idea of pilgrimage, and in some traditions, it is an integral part of the faith journey. One of the best-known pilgrimages that tends to attract people from many faith traditions is the Camino de Santiago de Compostela – a path of several hundred kilometers through France and Spain. In fact, several members of our Transformational Presence community have walked the Compostela path.
In my own journey, I have often felt like the path has chosen me. It was up to me to say “Yes” and follow the path as I was led. As Martin Buber said, there have been many “secret destinations” waiting for me along the way that I had no idea about when I embarked on the path. Life has been a series of both expected and unexpected destinations and discoveries.
What if we look at our lives as a pilgrimage? Not just a journey making our way through our days, or accomplishing a series of goals, or working through our challenges and opportunities. What if we consciously chose to embrace life as a pilgrimage to discover and live into who we are and what we are here to bring to the world?
In this short video, I share the profound moment of discovery in that coaching session and reflect further on what could be waiting for us when our life and work indeed becomes a pilgrimage.
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