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Religious Pilgrimages: Concept, Research, Analysis
Note: This Cartograf mapping scenario borrows heavily from the LES entitled Pilgrimages: Journeys of the Spirit
, and as such can be used in conjunction with it. (2011 version here
Step 1 (In class preparation)
Consider the concept of Pilgrimage
Explore in general the concept of pilgrimages, by reading and discussing the Background Notes on Pilgrimages
. Once you have a good grasp of the various elements of a pilgrimage reflect on the nature of religious experience by discussing these questions:
Step 2: Research a pilgrimage
- What is a religious experience?
- How would you describe a religious experience to someone?
- Are you familiar with any religious experiences? Name them.
Your next task is to choose, research then analyze pilgrimages from different religious traditions.
With a partner, discuss how pilgrimages can be seen as a religious experience that is an essential dimension for individuals or groups affiliated with a religious tradition.
Choose a specific religious pilgrimage to research, by scanning the suggested resource list below.
Before beginning your research, review the elements of a pilgrimage to help you organize your research. Use Worksheet 1- Research Organizer
to record your findings and make notes to be used to create your map.
Step 3: Map your analysis of a pilgrimage
Now your goal is to use Cartograf to present your findings and your analysis of the pilgrimage experience you have chosen. A sample mapping of the Two Saints Pilgrimage Way in England has been started (i.e. no analysis but just points, lines and images) if you zoom in to northern England!
a) Main pilgrimage site(s)
Place a placemarker at the main pilgrimage site and title it accordingly (The place and the religious tradition). Most often this point will mark the end of the pilgrimage.
Choose an appropriate icon. In that placemark's description explain:
Mark the route
- the Reason people make this pilgrimage.
- what is considered holy or special about this place
- possible effects the experience might have on the people who go there
Use the line tool to delineate at least one route one might take to get to the final destination. For pilgrimages with traditional and prescribed routes people usually follow, mark that route. (like in the sample route.) For those pilgrimages mostly focussed on a final destination, draw at least three lines to illustrate paths of different populations who might typically journey there. (ex. Muslims from three countries travelling to Mecca.) Title the line(s) and in the description(s), explain the route and (if appropriate) who typically takes it.
Consider objects, symbols, rituals... using images
Attach and analyze at least five images representing religious objects, symbols, or rituals found or performed at the site. Cartograf limits the number of images you can attach to a point, line or zone. You may need to put more than one point at your pilgrimage site. You can also put points along the route. For each of the images you attach, try to use both the description AND the image editor to explain the image.
World Places of Pilgrimage Map
Pilgrims' Progress Interactive map at NG
Places of Peace and Power Book
Pilgrims Progress: Follow the Journey
Pilgrimage: Spiritual Journey or Sacred Destination
Pilgrims and Pilgrimage
WHAT IS PILGRIMAGE? Why would a Christian decide to go on a pilgrimage?
Route of Santiago de Compostela
The Camino de Santiago
Six Reasons Why The Wall Is Holy
Islamic Pilgrimages (Hajj):
Islam - Religious Duty - Five Pillars
Muhammad: Legacy of a Prophet . Virtual Hajj | PBS
(Interactive site with maps).
The Hajj: The Greatest Trip on Earth
Introduction to the Pilgrimage Places of India
Heart of Hinduism: Pilgrimage
Pilgrimage in Buddhist India: Pilgrims Guide, Buddhist Holy Sites
Pilgrims Guide to Buddhist India: Buddhist Sites