Life is like the Camino. Everyone you are with is on their path toward their goal, their destination. Everyone’s path looks different, yet they are all the same. What I learned in walking the Camino de Santiago is that the Camino provides.
I heard a podcast by a woman who talked about her Camino experience. She became aware of what she calls the “tunnel of energy” she felt as she followed the pilgrim trail. She described the very familiar memory of walking along and being greeted by all the pilgrims she encountered. Yes! You can talk to anyone, any time when you are on the Camino.
As Wide As You Think
Her experience with the energy tunnel was different from mine though. She described her energy tunnel as being about as wide as the sidewalk or path. On the path, she felt she could talk to anyone and that everyone was a friend. Off the path, she felt she was talking to strangers, and help wasn’t to be found. I felt that “energy tunnel” was more of a wide, deep river or an ocean. It was a wonderful flow. Being so wide, I experienced it encompassing entire villages and wide swaths through the cities. I felt most everyone I encountered was a friend and I could talk to them and get help from them. I saw this energy tunnel more as an energy flow.
My sense of the energy flow was that the thousands of people who have walked the French Way through the centuries left a bit of themselves along their pilgrimage path. Pilgrims a lot of their intention, dedication and determination, and faith left along the Camino. Add to that the gratitude of the citizens of Northern Spain, whose livelihood is provided by the pilgrims coming through their communities. Pilgrims helped each other. Villagers and city folk alike helped pilgrims. The energy flow was filled with love and gratitude.
The Magic Factor
“The Camino provides” is a mantra of pilgrims. I saw it in action. I heard stories about that from fellow pilgrims of their experiences. I heard stories about other pilgrims who were provided for. While I believe it’s smart to be prepared for as much as you can when you are pursuing a goal, I also believe it’s smart to be open to the possibility that magic will happen. That magic is help and guidance when you need it, water when you are thirsty, a place to lay your head when the village is full, directions to put you back on the correct path, or even electrolytes to help you re-hydrate after passing out from dehydration and heat. The trick is: will your eyes and heart be open to experiencing the magic? And, will you be willing to contribute to the magic?
From my experience, life is like the Camino. If so, then it stands to reason that magic happens every day in my life. Yours too. Do you see it, feel it, and experience it? Do you share it?
This is an important concept, especially right now. The combination of politics and COVID-19 has brought out more divisiveness and angst in the US than even 9/11 did. People are in need of more compassion and love, of a helping hand, and of guidance than they have been in a very long time.
The helpers are around you. Do you see them? Do you feel them? Are you one of them?
The energy flow doesn’t exist only along the Camino. It exists everywhere. Open your heart and eyes to it. Contribute to it. The world needs love and gratitude right now. This is the time to step up and be part of the solution, not part of the problem.
The Camino provides. Life is like the Camino. It’s time to provide your energy to the flow of life and make some magic happen.