This experience is:
for 1 person
24 hours – 24 days long
Physical, Psychological, Symbolic, Spiritual, Material
- Identify the central need in your life – it should be something you need strength to overcome or deal with. This will be what you are petitioning for. It may be an illness. It may be a psychological challenge you face. It may be a life transition you are facing that you need moral support to face.
- Identify a site that is sacred to you. It should be far away and it should in some way represent the strength you need to address the central need you identified in step 1. It may be a church. It may be a gravesite. It may be a museum. It may be your childhood home. It only need be some place you personally find meaningful.
- Find or create an object that represents the challenge you are facing. If, for instance, you have to heal from an arm injury, a doll’s arm might do. If your heart needs healing, a milagro with an image of a heart on it might do. If you are in need of money, you might make your own dollar bill with pen and paper. It should be something of a little worth but not too much worth. You will be relinquishing it at the sacred site. This will be your votive offering.
- Map your journey. It should be a long journey and you should not take the easiest route. Your journey should involve at least a little walking. Plan your arrival time.
- Pack for your journey. Take nothing excessive. Your most important items are your votive and your shoes. You might also bring a notebook.
- On the appointed day, set out on your pilgrimage. The entire trip should be a meditation on the petition you identified in the first step. Use your cellphone only in emergencies and for mapping. Even boredom is a mediation. Observe your environment. Memorize poems. Think about your life. Breathe.
- When you arrive at the sacred site, figure out what is appropriate. The only requirement is that you leave your votive.
This experience is based on the structure of Odyssey Works:Pilgrimage, our 2016 performance. Pilgrimage, of course, has been around since time immemorial.