A tourist passes through the place. The place passes through a pilgrim.
Long before Oct. 31 came to be associated with Disney princess costumes and fun-sized candy bars, it was the boisterous Celtic festival of Samhain (“sah-win).
Pilgrimage is a form of spiritual journey that has a physical dimension. Right now it is difficult to travel physically due to restrictions caused by COVID-19. Click on the button below to learn more about the pilgrimages we currently offer.
All has been consecrated.
The creatures in the forest know this,
the earth does, the seas do, the clouds know
as does the heart full of love.
- St. Catherine of Sienna
Celtic spirituality, which abounds in the places we visit, emphasizes the notion of "thin places." A thin place is any location where the separation of one from the Holy is thin; that is, it is easier in such places to experience God, the Sacred, or the Divine. A thin place can be a mountain top, a rocky beach, a sunrise, or time with a loved one. It can also be a birth, time of crisis, or death. Everyone, regardless of religious background including no religious background, has experienced thin places.
We love to travel to Iona because it is a thin place in itself: the amazing interplay of water, land, and sky, beautiful sunrises and sunsets, and a play of light that changes every minute. It is not an overstatement to say that Iona itself offers transformation.
John Shelby Spong has said that Jungian Psychology is the spirituality of the 21st Century. Carl Jung was a foundational psychologist, who developed a theory of personality that fit intimately with the spiritual world without connecting to any particular religion. He posited that much our psyche -- our whole selves -- is in the unconscious that touches a vast panoply of archetypes from heroes to villains to mothers and fathers to rears and hopes. Through our dreams and creativity we give expression to our internal archetypes that connect us to all people everywhere. Art from ancient to modern and in all cultures contains the same themes and figures. This unconscious world is in us and it includes the Divine. In other words, as with Celtic spirituality, God is in us and around us and clearly manifest in the natural world.
Here are some lines from poet Kenneth C. Stevens
Is this place really nearer to God?
Is the wall thin between our whispers
And his listening? I only know
The world grows less and less --
Here what matters is conquering wind,
Coming home dryshod, getting the fire lit.
I am not sure whether there is no time here
Or more time, whether the light is stronger
Or just easier to see. That is why
I keep returning, thirsty, to this place
That is older than my understanding...
I see or hear something
that more or less
kills me with delight,
that leaves me
like a needle in the haystack of light.
It was what I was born for --
to look to listen, to lose myself
over and over in joy
"mindful". Mary Oliver
Pilgrimage is "mindful" travel a form of spiritual journey. As we travel through physical time and space to places of spiritual power and inspiration, we are also on a quest to the Sacred within. We regard Jungian Psychology as a way of building a viable spiritual path in the 21st Century, and draw on the Haden Institute for our leadership and content.
A visitor passes through a place, the place passes through the pilgrim. Cynthia Ozik
We do pilgrimages. We organize each pilgrimage in every detail so that you can attend entirely to the experience. We work with the best available guides and pay attention to our impact on the planet and the people we visit.
We invite you to pursue the quest of inner discovery by joining us on one of the pilgrimages we have planned for this year.
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I'm the person you are most likely to have contact with first. I manage the registrations and bookings and the details of the itinerary. I love to travel and love to labor over train schedules and even this website. Really! am a retired Episcopal priest with a deep interest in spirituality especially for men. Linda and I have led or co-led pilgrimages to Ireland, Iona, Taizé, and Canterbury, plus mission trips to Central America. Did I mention that Linda and I met in Israel on a group tour thirty-six years ago?
I am a retired UCC minister living in Hendersonville, NC, with Philip. I have been drawn for many years to the study of the divine feminine and am currently writing a book on Bridgid who is the focus for our pilgrimage to Ireland in September. Like Philip, I love to travel just about anywhere anytime. It is our goal to make your pilgrimage a transformative experience.