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2020 Camino Guides

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
Welcome to the forum Yogi, yes, anyone can do the Camino. I have met Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, Jewish and agnostic pilgrims on the Camino.
I hope this answers your question.
Buen Camino.
 

Felipe

Veteran Member
The Archbishopric of Compostela –that is the moral, and up to a point, practical authority on pilgrimage affairs- establishes some requisites for getting a credential (the document that identifies a pilgrim and give access to albergues or communal hostels) and obtaining the Compostela, or pilgrimage certificate.
See
http://peregrinossantiago.es/eng/pilgrimage/the-credencial/
and
http://peregrinossantiago.es/eng/pilgrimage/the-compostela/
These requisites are commonly reduced to the sentence that pilgrims should have “religious or spiritual reasons”. Most people arriving in Compostela say that this is their case (up to 95%, I have read.) If you do the pilgrimage, you may conclude by yourself if this is true or not.

On the practical side, albergues or pilgrims offices delivering credentials don’t ask about your religion affiliation, or do it only for statistical reasons (as in Roncesvalles).

I have seen that in other Catholic pilgrimages, believers go in groups, singing hymns and even carrying the image of saints. I don’t know about the past, but currently this is not the case in Camino de Santiago; it is a mostly secular and individual experience. The religious or spiritual side is optional, a personal issue. If you stay in Catholic parochial albergues (there are many, and some of them very advisable), you will be probably invited to attend Mass. You can go (or not) as a non believer, in a respectful way. Besides, there are also municipal and private albergues (that is, secular).

Let me be the first to wish you a
Buen camino!
 
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William Marques

Moderator
Staff member
Felipe,

There are people many faiths in India including Roman Catholics.

The OP may be be Catholic or he may not be, whatever faith he is he is welcome on the Camino.

There is also a certificate provided to those, Christian or not, who do not want to put "religious or spiritual" on their credential.

There are many more secular albergues than parochial ones.
 

Dennis D

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés - 2014
Francés - 2015
Francés - 2016
Francés - 2017
Francés - 2018
Francés - 2019
(2020 - ?)
If your feet can make the journey the rest of you is very welcome. Politics and/or religion was never discussed during my experience on the Camino. Everyone got along very well and it makes one wonder what is wrong with the rest of the world?
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Not India but close by!!
"Strangers on the Camino" was recently launched in Colombo, Sri Lanka by VijithaYapa Publishers.
Here is the video of the book launch - with the keynote speech made by his son Shivantha Wijesinha with whom he walked the Camino.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1w7ozq7bhSA
 

Felipe

Veteran Member
Felipe,
There are people many faiths in India including Roman Catholics.
I know. But I just couldn't imagine a reason why a person would ask if a given nationality is OK in the Camino. So I assumed (maybe wrongly) that it was about religion (it is a question that comes frequently when I talk about going to the Camino, because in my country pilgrimage is a religious and collective activity, organized by parishes or pious brotherhoods). I usually explain that the Camino is a UNESCO's World Heritage route, open to all nationalities, cultures and beliefs.
 
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siseale94

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, Oct.( 2012), Pamplona to Santiago Compostela. Camino Finisterre, Oct. (2015)
If you plan and train a bit, you should have no problem. Buen Camino
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
I am also an Indian and I am walking the camino this September. OM shanti and buen camino
Just FYI, BTW, and for what it is worth... My namesake, St. Thomas the Apostle, traveled East from Jerusalem to spread the Christian gospel along the way and eventually in western India. He was martyred and, I believe interred in Goa on the West coast of India. Goa was also the center or the Portuguese trading and missionary settlements along India's west coast for quite some time, but well and long after St. Thomas' time there.

Like St. James the Apostle, Thomas was also one of the original twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ. Given the very close parallels in both Thomas' and James' ministries, and eventual martyrdoms for their faith, I should think that this pilgrimage would be especially relevant to anyone of any philosophical, religious, or spiritual persuasion from the Indian subcontinent.

All are welcome on the Camino. The rule of hospitality applies to all pilgrims, as we are all united in our journey. Each pilgrim has a different perception of their journey. But ALL are deeply affected by the effort and accomplishment. Along the way, we treat each other according to The Golden Rule." Always treat others the way you would wish that they treat you. Help other pilgrims in need. They will help you when you need help. Do not be shy...

As you speak English, you should be okay. English seems to have become the second language along the Camino. Regardless of where the pilgrim is from, they usually have at least a tiny bit of English. Plus, in my experience, there is ALWAYS someone nearby who can help you communicate.

Most Spaniards do not speak English. So, you would be well advised to at least be proficient with the Berlitz Spanish phrase book and dictionary, or something similar. Be sure to obtain the Castilian / Spain variety of Spanish NOT the Latin American variety.

That will get you through most situations. Knowing more Spanish is always better. I started with the Berlitz phrase book, dictionary and CD ROM. I copied the CD to my iPod and use it to refresh my pronunciation and knowledge from time to time. But, I think I am moving on to Rosetta Stone as soon as I can afford it.

I hope this helps...Namaste!
 

William Marques

Moderator
Staff member
When I was in Goa I visited the tomb of St Francis Xavier in the Basilica of Bom Jesus.

When in Sri Lanka one of the walks I wish I had made was to Adams Peak. The Sri Pada "sacred footprint", a rock formation near the summit in Bhuddist tradition is held to be the footprint of the Buddha, in Hindu tradition that of Shiva and in Islamic and Christian tradition that of Adam or that of St. Thomas.
 

Silvester

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Salvador (2014)
Camino Primitivo (2014)
Camino Muxia (2014)
Camino Fisterra (2014)
Hi Yogi
Was your question also about visas for the necessary length of time to do the pilgrimage? I read the requirements on the embassy website and thought that they were a lot stricter than for NZ citizens - in fact there was considerable evidence required to show solvency and a good job to go home to. That aside, Falcon commented that about 40 Indian nationals did receive a compostela recently, so it must be possible for some folks to obtain the necessary short term visa.
On a personal level - if you are called to it, do it and buen camino.
 

Hurry Krishna

Indian on the Way
Camino(s) past & future
2009 (from Sarria), 2014 from St Jean Pied de Port, 2016 from Porto, 2018 from Le Puy to Santiago.
Can An Indian do the Way of St. James?? Please advice
I am an Indian woman doing my third Camino. This time I have started from Le Puy. Am about 500 km into my walk and hoping to make St Jean-Pied-de-Port in 10 days or so. I am very keen to find other Indians who may have done the Camino, and what they saw/felt. If you are interested, please see my blog and respond. I am really keen to find others who like me are fascinated by the cultural experience of Camino, which is so unusual from my Indian perspective. My blog site is
https://readingontheroad54893552.wordpress.com/ Or I think you can search for it with ‘an Indian on the way’. Look forward to getting some input from fellow Indians.
 
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Any indian citizens here

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