Phil Cousineau startled us with the dangers of medieval pilgrimage—half did not return! Then, he reminded us pilgrim in Latin means “to put the sole of your feet to the soul of the world.” Think of that as we embark on our internal pilgrimages. All that in the first minutes! This conversation is a feast of history, meaning, and possibility. Just the food we need to transform quarantine to radical pilgrimage.
Phil Cousineau is an award-winning writer, filmmaker, travel leader, storyteller, and host of Global Spirit on PBS. Phil’s fascination with art, literature, and culture has taken him from Michigan to Marrakesh, Iceland to the Amazon. He’s written 35 books including: Stoking the Creative Fires, The Hero’s Journey, The Oldest Story in the World, and the focus of this episode, The Art of Pilgrimage.
Real Prayer Action
Phil was a font of fabulous ideas to bring to life:
- Phil said the pace of the soul is to saunter. If it’s safe in your neighborhood to go for a walk, notice how fast you and the people around you are moving. Whatever your pace, slow down and notice what changes.
- Phil’s family used to read aloud to one another. When was the last time you did that! If you are living with others, pick up a book and pass it around. If you are alone, read aloud to yourself. Or call someone and read together.
- Phil mentioned several places he loved to visit. Where have you been surprised by how powerful a place was. Share photos with someone. Talk about what it felt like to be in that place. Or return to that place in your journal and see what surfaces as important.
- In your journal, list places you’ve visited and ask: Was there a pattern? What was I looking for? Did I find it? When I can travel again, where do I want to go next?
- Mark Twain said the two most important days are the day you are born and the day you found out why. This quarantine is the ideal moment to ponder the great why.
- Send someone a letter. And while you’re at it, sing and dance too!
Open your gift bags to read an excerpt of The Art of Pilgrimage and a wonderful gift from Phil, Prayers at 3 AM. Then, come to our Praying at the Speed of Love Facebook community and share your own experiences on this time of internal pilgrimage.
And please, press any of the social media share buttons at the top of this page and introduce your friends to this timely podcast. We are all walking this pilgrimage together.