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In this day and age of videoconferencing and global heating the idea of pilgrimage could be past it. I had the idea of visiting some Buddhist centres in Western Europe well before the pandemic and the list ballooned to 100+ by the time everything closed down. When a friend told me May 2022 that Interrail tickets were at half price I bought one at the last minute. Between that and the 9€ German ticket I clocked up 10,000km (according to the interrail app). I was scrambling day-by-day to plan my route (as Sanghas go into summer mode) and at times could have done with some help from a friend behind a nice powerful desktop but nevertheless I managed to meet with a good few esteemed teachers.

Here are a few other pilgrims who inspired me:

A poster I found along the way:
The Jizo/Kshitigarbha Way.

La via del risveglio, a project by an Italian Sangha to visit other Buddhist temples.

Komyo, a French monk travelling on bike in USA.



  • What a lovely idea!

  • JeroenJeroen Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter Netherlands Veteran

    A wonderful anecdote @kentonite, glad that you had a good time on your extended trip.

  • I've been wanting to visit some semi-local centers around here. This might be the nudge I needed to do that.

  • Most European countries have Buddhist Unions with lists of members. I heard that the Italian union in particular receives state-funding for members so they are more stringent about whom they let in. Therefore you won't find all Buddhist groups there but it's a good place to start.

    What I did was find coordinates for all the centres I wanted to visit before starting out. It was very helpful but also difficult and you would not want to do that work on a mobile phone.

    Now there is a private company aiming to simplify discovery but the licence looks pretty restrictive.

  • howhow Veteran Veteran
    edited December 2022

    When a pilgrimage is what one calls the journey that deliberately prioritizes a gnosis of the heart & mind over the potential discomforts of such explorations, then when is the active seeker of the way, not already on a pilgrimage in daily life?

  • Or conversely, If the pilgrim doesn't prioritise a gnosis of heart and mind in the midst of constant change are they really seeking the Way?

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