A donation to the forum removes ads for you, and supports Ivar in his work running it

Advertisement

Camino Forum Donation

One Weird Thought - Radicalized

Status
Not open for further replies.

Scott Powell

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2015
Camino Portuguese 2018
I was reading the news the other day about another act of terrorism. Senseless violence by a lone attacker acting out in a way that was horrific, life-altering, and ultimately made sense to only him.

Then it hit me – I am self-radicalized. I’ve done dramatic things that seem to make sense when seen through my eyes.

I’ve never met a single person in my home country who’s been on the Camino. Even so, I’ve used the internet and books to learn about the Camino. I’ve trained hard, acquired the necessary gear, and then traveled half-way around the world to follow my mission. It wasn’t easy or easily understood by others. It required some suffering and much personal sacrifice at times.

My point is, on some weird level I have increased understanding of these people. I cannot say more sympathy – there is far too much pointless pain caused by their actions.

The internet is a powerful tool that can have a huge impact on people’s lives. It can put us in touch with strong feelings that don’t always fit others view of ‘normal.’ Fortunately for me, it’s been a good. The Camino has helped me become a stronger person and created memories that will last a lifetime.

Who says self-radicalization always has to be a bad thing? Yay for being radicalized for the good!

See you in Portugal in 2018.
 

Antonius Vaessen

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2015-2016 VdlPlata - Sanabres
2016.Primitivo
2017 Salvador
2018 Norte?
Sorry but I don't understand your point. Perhaps it's a question of definition. To me radicalization implies that your view is/becomes onedimensional, that you're not open to opinions, feelings and interests of other people and you have also no problems in hurting others interests and even lives.
If you commit yourself fully for a goal like walking a Camino is of a very different order. It is in no way a threat to others. On the contrary, one of the advantages of a Camino is the open contact ,without prejudices with other people from all kind of backgrounds.
 

Scott Powell

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2015
Camino Portuguese 2018
Maybe I can clarify my post. I was stunned myself to recognize I had something in common with people who commit acts that are a plague on our world.

Specifically, terrorists frequently are mobilized to action by videos, articles online, etc. and have been labeled ‘self-radicalized.’ Not that different in practice from how I gained my affection for the Camino. I would categorize spending hundreds of hours preparing, a good bit of money, and several demanding weeks very far away from home with strangers a pretty radical undertaking. So, a very odd parallel.

My point is that the Camino experience is a good for most who walk it and has been for me. The same means that enable very bad things in the world can bring us the best things in life as well.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
Maybe I can clarify my post. I was stunned myself to recognize I had something in common with people who commit acts that are a plague on our world.

Specifically, terrorists frequently are mobilized to action by videos, articles online, etc. and have been labeled ‘self-radicalized.’ Not that different in practice from how I gained my affection for the Camino. I would categorize spending hundreds of hours preparing, a good bit of money, and several demanding weeks very far away from home with strangers a pretty radical undertaking. So, a very odd parallel.

My point is that the Camino experience is a good for most who walk it and has been for me. The same means that enable very bad things in the world can bring us the best things in life as well.
I do not mean to offend, and I apologize if my post is taken in a way which offends you.

You are trying to create an equivalency by analogizing individual acts of evil, ie terrorism, to individual acts of good, ie seeking a positive impact by walking a Camino.

The very fact that evil is actualized by various research modalities in order to commit evil acts, destroys any commonality with someone who seeks good things from a Camino experience. Nor do I find that it is a "radical undertaking" to do a Camino; it is essentially no different than the effort needed to plan a vacation or tour of Europe or any foreign country. The fact that a Camino is an individual commitment is not analogous to a commitment made to blow people up. The word 'commitment' is not the motivating factor, it is the motivation behind the commitment that is the motivating factor. A commitment for evil is not the same as a commitment for good.

I see absolutely no parallel, whether odd or not. Going down this road of thought leads to the danger of normalizing that which is evil. A terrorist who purposefully mass-murders the innocent are rabid animals. I doubt that anyone could see an individual, who is seeking out that which is wholesome and positive by walking Camino, in that same light. No analogy is possible. :)

Again, I apologize if my post upsets you in any way.
 

Purky

The Dutch guy
Camino(s) past & future
Breathe properly.
Stay curious.
And walk a camino.
I think you raise an interesting point, for two very distinct reasons. First off, during and after my camino I've thought and talked a lot about the obsession I developed about the walk. It took a firm hold of me, long before my departure. That ultimately caused problems because this preoccupation (inadvertently and unknowingly) caused emotional damage to a loved one.

It wasn't so much radicalisation as it was a train of thought that quickly turned into a runaway train. Anything and everything was about the camino, researching and prepping for it. It was tunnel vision on a grand scale. And that tunnel vision obviously prevented me to see that in thinking about (and preparing for) my camino I was shutting people out.

Focus is good, but too much focus isn't. Sounds simple, but it is a fine line. And I didn't see it. So in committing totally to undergo the camino experience, I violated a fundamental rule about a pilgrimage (the wellbeing of others) before I even took the first step. I was so wrapped up in my own plans that I forgot to look around, communicate and share. Not unlike a fanatic or an extremist, I'm afraid.

Which brings me to the second reason I find your post interesting. There is a lot of research going on right now about the role of internet and social media in radicalization. Having personalized algorithms in Google and Facebook for instance sounds all very nice and accommodating, but they have a chilling side effect.

Social media users are more likely to engage with people and media sources that share their political beliefs. This creates bubbles, also known as echo chambers or the echo effect. The result is an online world where differing social and political views are filtered out, depending on which bubble you have created for yourself. This can actually limit you in discovering information about certain current events.

How such a situation can easily lead to polarization and ultimately radicalization is not hard to imagine. On a much smaller scale I saw this happening today on this very forum. Because of profanities or some politically incorrect words/frasing in some threads, the message in those threads quickly became irrelevant, and the brunt of the discussion focussed on choice of words. I'm not judging this, words can mean a lot, but I also think a higher resistance can be beneficial.

In the end it is all about intent. And I find it refreshing and admirable that you are brave enough to look for something in common with a radical. After all, the path to enlightenment and peace is recognizing yourself in others, and others in you.
 
Last edited:

MichelleElynHogan

Veteran Member
I do not mean to offend, and I apologize if my post is taken in a way which offends you.

You are trying to create an equivalency by analogizing individual acts of evil, ie terrorism, to individual acts of good, ie seeking a positive impact by walking a Camino.

The very fact that evil is actualized by various research modalities in order to commit evil acts, destroys any commonality with someone who seeks good things from a Camino experience. Nor do I find that it is a "radical undertaking" to do a Camino; it is essentially no different than the effort needed to plan a vacation or tour of Europe or any foreign country. The fact that a Camino is an individual commitment is not analogous to a commitment made to blow people up. The word 'commitment' is not the motivating factor, it is the motivation behind the commitment that is the motivating factor. A commitment for evil is not the same as a commitment for good.

I see absolutely no parallel, whether odd or not. Going down this road of thought leads to the danger of normalizing that which is evil. A terrorist who purposefully mass-murders the innocent are rabid animals. I doubt that anyone could see an individual, who is seeking out that which is wholesome and positive by walking Camino, in that same light. No analogy is possible. :)

Again, I apologize if my post upsets you in any way.
Ah, but there is a parallel, very definitely. Scott saw it and told us of it. There is good and there is evil in this World. We all know if it.

So I ask, where does indifference sit in your heart? What side of that line? And what action does it deserve?

We walk the Camino for many reasons. When we do, personal purpose does not predicate our identity as Peregrinos, yes? We are the same.

When we brush aside the veil of indifference, we can see the dark side, that which too many identify with a call to arms, to deliver unexpected and violent attacks and violence. They call it radicalizing or being radicalized. This is the demon and the challenge.

What can we do? Engage with the Youth that are most susceptible to this scourge. Is it difficult? Yes, absolutely. We are not familiar with Teens and twenty-somethings with Middle East origins. But keep in mind, no country is immune. We have seen this. We ignore this problem at our own peril.

Hoping this clarifies the issue and maybe somrthing that can be done about it.

May God keep step with you.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
Ah, but there is a parallel, very definitely. Scott saw it and told us of it. There is good and there is evil in this World. We all know if it.

So I ask, where does indifference sit in your heart? What side of that line? And what action does it deserve?

We walk the Camino for many reasons. When we do, personal purpose does not predicate our identity as Peregrinos, yes? We are the same.

When we brush aside the veil of indifference, we can see the dark side, that which too many identify with a call to arms, to deliver unexpected and violent attacks and violence. They call it radicalizing or being radicalized. This is the demon and the challenge.

What can we do? Engage with the Youth that are most susceptible to this scourge. Is it difficult? Yes, absolutely. We are not familiar with Teens and twenty-somethings with Middle East origins. But keep in mind, no country is immune. We have seen this. We ignore this problem at our own peril.

Hoping this clarifies the issue and maybe somrthing that can be done about it.

May God keep step with you.
I am at a loss as to where in my post I even sparingly suggested that we be indifferent to evil, or ignore it, or ignore those who preach it or those who might be persuaded by it. I guess I'm missing the connection between doing a personal pilgrimage, and being indifferent, oblivious, or not engaging with those who are might be suseptical to radicalization.

I certainly do not know what any single person doing the camino has done or not done in regard to the above, much less the entire cohort of Camino walkers. For all I know, everyone doing the Camino is engaging in positive activities in their communities to help wayward, destitute, and desperate individuals. I have dug wells for fresh water and helped construct proper sewage disposal infrastructure in Africa. I've provided emergency medical treatment for victims of civil unrest and attempted genocide. I volunteer at our local homeless shelters and homeless youth programs.

If I had posted your words, it would have been terribly presumtious of me, not knowing anything about anyone's engagement in social service help or youth support in their local communities, or abroad

You say, "When we do, personal purpose does not predicate our identity as Peregrinos, yes? We are the same." I respectfully say that I have no idea what that means, or how that applies to the issue being discussed.

Thank you for your thoughts. And I extend my warm regards :)
 

SusanMB

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012)
Camino Portuguese (2014)
Camino Via de la Plata (April/May2016)
Norte (2017)
Scott am I intruding into your life if I ask where you come from? I am only interested because you say that you don't know anyone in your country that has completed a Camino?? Perhaps they are out there waiting to talk to someone elsewith the same ideals.
There is a vast difference applied to being radicalised and being overtly enthusiastic. The reasoning for your increased internet activity is to satisfy your enthusiasm for completing your Camino and engaging what you require for your next Camino. I am sure there would be many of us who fit into these scenarios. I most certainly do.
When I first read your post I was intrigued, not for your enthusiasm for using the internet but for your choice of words. Self-radicalisation is predominately based on a political basis and I cannot see where you fit this pattern with what you say you have bee researching. To me, you fit the self=enthused bracket and not the self-radicalisation. I am glad you enjoyed your Camino and that you can see where you gained life lessons.
 

beiramar

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Caminho Português, Camino del Norte, Fisterra,
Your definition of "self radicalization" even fits a lot of hobbies, personal interests, educations and professions.
It's the human nature to strive for an achievement.

Your comparison doesn't go very far and it's odd to think that you feel as obsessed as a terrorist.
Hope you don't feel the urge to die for this quest.
 

paulita

Una "peregringa" de California
Camino(s) past & future
September "2017"
To those who were not around when "radical" meant something far from malevolent.

rad·i·cal
ˈradək(ə)l/
adjective
  1. (especially of change or action) relating to or affecting the fundamental nature of something; far-reaching or thorough.
Clearly the most important outcome Scott Powell comes to is "Yay for being radicalized for the good! "
He GETS it!
Be "Radical" (in 1960's lingo) Be awesome, 'cool', engaged, Far-out, 'psychedelic', "bitchin', etc. Be RAD.
Get 'into' it. Make love not war, et cetera.

I think I understand his sentiment. I was a product of the San Francisco/Bay Area 1960's generation (sans drugs, in my case.)
We were so 'radical.' We believed that women were humans. We were passionate. But in our endeavors, we did not hurt ourselves or others.

Be as Radical as you need to be. Rule #1 here is: You may not hurt yourself or others. The usage of 'Radical' has not always been derogatory.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Can anybody here inform me how to respond to an individual's post? Where do I click.
And where is a glossary so I can figure out what certain acronyms mean? i.e., OP?
I found Ivar's "rules". Fair enough.
I tried to upload my photo (jpg) No luck. I'll keep trying.
First Camino (Frances)will be mid September 2017
 

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
Can anybody here inform me how to respond to an individual's post? Where do I click.
Just click on the "Reply" button at the bottom right of the post of which you wish to reply. That will include that post in your reply.
 

C clearly

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
Can anybody here inform me how to respond to an individual's post?
You have successfully replied to the OP (Original Post). If you want to reply to another's reply, you should click the blue "Reply" button under their post. That enters their post as a quotation in your comment box. Then you can add your comments. Just be careful not to mix your words inside the quoted text.

If you want to quote only a part of their text, there are 2 ways. One is to reply as I explained above, and then delete what you don't want. But again be careful not to delete the html code that makes the quote appear in a nice pink box.

The second method is to select the text that you want to quote from the other person's text. Click the "Quote" button. Go to your reply box and click "Insert Quote."

For acronyms like "OP," just Google the letters and you'll find an urban dictionary explanation.
 

VNwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Thank you, Scott, for a thought-provoking thread - and I think you have a very good point.
We can feed goodness or evil; it's just a matter of how we direct our energy and intention.

And I actually think living out what we learn on the Camino IS radical. A radical needn't be one-dimensional or evil; it's just someone 'out there' - very different, and wanting to change the status quo.

That was off the top of my head, so I looked it up:
"Radical - a person who advocates thorough or complete political or social reform; a member of a political party or part of a party pursuing such aims. Synonyms: revolutionary, progressive, reformer, revisionist"

The Dalai Lama says that compassion is the radicalization of our time.
And the Camino can definitely open the heart to that. And to a weariness about the shallow and selfish aspects of our culture that are the opposite of the simplicity and kindness that we access on the Camino.

I'm apologetically radical, and the older I get the more of a reactionary I feel.
It's a very liberating and joyful thing to no longer measure myself so much by what I own and what I do but more by how much I can care.
The Camino has helped that along, no doubt about it.
 
M

Mike Trebert

Guest
Thank you, Scott, for a thought-provoking thread - and I think you have a very good point.
We can feed goodness or evil; it's just a matter of how we direct our energy and intention.

And I actually think living out what we learn on the Camino IS radical. A radical needn't be one-dimensional or evil; it's just someone 'out there' - very different, and wanting to change the status quo.

That was off the top of my head, so I looked it up:
"Radical - a person who advocates thorough or complete political or social reform; a member of a political party or part of a party pursuing such aims. Synonyms: revolutionary, progressive, reformer, revisionist"

The Dalai Lama says that compassion is the radicalization of our time.
And the Camino can definitely open the heart to that. And to a weariness about the shallow and selfish aspects of our culture that are the opposite of the simplicity and kindness that we access on the Camino.

I'm apologetically radical, and the older I get the more of a reactionary I feel.
It's a very liberating and joyful thing to no longer measure myself so much by what I own and what I do but more by how much I can care.
The Camino has helped that along, no doubt about it.
Yes indeed. But maybe reactive or responsive (as in "responsible") instead of "reactionary". Picky, sorry.
 

VNwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Yes indeed. But maybe reactive or responsive (as in "responsible") instead of "reactionary". Picky, sorry.
Ok. Fine with me, Mike. 'Responsive' has a nice feeling to it.
Picky, perhaps, but words have meanings. that's why they're there. So no need to apologize!:)

But you have to admit the kindness and generosity of heart that happens on the Camino is subversive, in a subtle (and very good) way. Our culture in general is going a zillion miles an hour in the other direction.
That's why I actually like reactionary. (It's also a wee bit provocative, which is not necessarily a bad thing...)

'Reactive' connotes a lack of awareness to me, which definitely isn't the case.
This is completely and knowingly intentional.
 
M

Mike Trebert

Guest
Ok. Fine with me, Mike. 'Responsive' has a nice feeling to it.
Picky, perhaps, but words have meanings. that's why they're there. So no need to apologize!:)

But you have to admit the kindness and generosity of heart that happens on the Camino is subversive, in a subtle (and very good) way. Our culture in general is going a zillion miles an hour in the other direction.
That's why I actually like reactionary. (It's also a wee bit provocative, which is not necessarily a bad thing...)

'Reactive' connotes a lack of awareness to me, which definitely isn't the case.
This is completely and knowingly intentional.
Yes:
"But you have to admit the kindness and generosity of heart that happens on the Camino is subversive, in a subtle (and very good) way. Our culture in general is going a zillion miles an hour in the other direction.
That's why I actually like reactionary. (It's also a wee bit provocative, which is not necessarily a bad thing...)"

The word "reactionary" has a heavy meaning for me - always triggers memories of USA southern bigots with their knee-jerk reactions to the civil rights movement. My father was racist and there are racists in my wider family now, so I guess a narrow reading on my part.
 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Camino(s) past & future
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
Radicalisation is something that belongs to motivations and to worldviews IMO, and perhaps the indoctrinating of them by others, but not to actions themselves -- which can be good or evil according to their own nature, regardless of whether they are radically motivated or not. A murderous attack is evil, whether it is motivated by madness, or a radical ideology, or an emotional rage, or any other reason.

Any ideology or worldview can become radicalised, not just those that are described so in media reports. Radical opinions are not necessarily wrong, nor even a priori wrong, though they are necessarily a source of conflicts with those holding opposite, incompatible views.

Having said that, the definition of "radical" in the full Oxford English dictionary is strangely unhelpful to define what it actually is, and so perhaps there may be an element of this concept being used against some people and groups that one disagrees with (which if you think about it, is double-edged, going both ways) -- though the core meaning of "deeply rooted opinions in some matter" is likely more objective.

As for the "radical Camino", hmmmm, I don't know, I suppose that it's possible to come up with some sort of "Camino ideology", though I've always viewed the Camino as an action, and as a means to an end, or to several purposes -- a life experience too certainly, but something set in stone forever in one's head as a radical ideology ? I really don't think so, not even as a "purist" !! I'd view the sameness of the Way both from day to day and from Camino to Camino more as ritual than ideology, whereas what keeps us going is IMO more the novelty and the inexhaustible surprises and the ever-present possibility of discovery, rather than just retreading what we already know from the Way. The ritual element IMO is more a discipline, both physical and mental, than anything "radical".
 

jgpryde

Member
Camino(s) past & future
St.Jean-Santiago (2017)
I've heard other peregrinos referring to themselves as a Camino "addict" which, to me, refers to someone with an unhealthy physical reliance or mental obsession with something. It's always laughed off as an exaggeration intended to emphasize a point..

So if the OP wants to refer to himself as "self-radicalized" in regards to his interest in the goodness of the Camino, I say "have at it!".

IMHO,

-jgp
 

VNwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
something set in stone forever in one's head as a radical ideology
Well, I'm not so sure that's what is meant by the OP, certainly not what I mean.
It's not any fixed ideology that I'm thinking of, but rather the simple and kind attitude of heart that comes from that physical and mental discipline that you mention, as well as everything else one encounters along the way.

That kindness, contentment, and simplicity that can come on the Camino is radical, in the sense (I think, anyway) of being profoundly different from the widespread 'new normal' of increasing divisiveness, fear, and separation - as well as from the consumerist ideals of owning more and more and more.

Well, JP, may be talking apples and oranges, but all that is just words. I suspect we deeply agree.;)
I certainly agree with this - 'discovery' of course applying to both inner and outer realms:
what keeps us going is IMO more the novelty and the inexhaustible surprises and the ever-present possibility of discovery
 

paulita

Una "peregringa" de California
Camino(s) past & future
September "2017"
You have successfully replied to the OP (Original Post). If you want to reply to another's reply, you should click the blue "Reply" button under their post. That enters their post as a quotation in your comment box. Then you can add your comments. Just be careful not to mix your words inside the quoted text.

If you want to quote only a part of their text, there are 2 ways. One is to reply as I explained above, and then delete what you don't want. But again be careful not to delete the html code that makes the quote appear in a nice pink box.

The second method is to select the text that you want to quote from the other person's text. Click the "Quote" button. Go to your reply box and click "Insert Quote."

For acronyms like "OP," just Google the letters and you'll find an urban dictionary explanation.
OK that makes sense. But I could not C as Clearly as you. I guess you could have even answered me with "IITYWIMWYBMAD" :)

Thank you for your instructions. Pror to last night's post the only Blue boxes I saw on my screen at the bottom R of the "OP" were:
-a blue box with a number
-a blue box that said "like"
All of a sudden today I see 2 new blue boxes. One says "+Quote" and the other says "Reply". These boxes were not available to me yesterday.
 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Camino(s) past & future
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
All of a sudden today I see 2 new blue boxes. One says "+Quote" and the other says "Reply". These boxes were not available to me yesterday.
ah ! it was your first message yesterday -- the reply button is not available as an anti-spam measure until you're accepted as a forum member, if I remember correctly
 

Scott Powell

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2015
Camino Portuguese 2018
I genuinely regret any discomfort the word ‘radicalized’ in my post may have created for some of you. It is a word loaded with sad associations for many of us.

Even so, I’m reluctant to surrender even a word to those that do us evil. The word radical is inherently neutral. Radical actions have changed the world for good as often as they have had negative effects. Recognizing only the negative ultimately allows fear to rule our lives.

To me, words like enthusiastic or even passionate don’t match my feeling about the Camino. I can be enthusiastic about my local sports team sitting on my couch at home watching a game. In my mind, radicalism is a call that spurs a need for action. Beyond enthusiasm, a force for change – in this case a change in myself that is positive.

The word works for me, apologies if it doesn’t for you.

I appreciate your taking the time to share your thoughts on this. Best wishes and Buen Camino.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

OLDER threads on this topic


Book your lodging here

Booking.com


Advertisement

Booking.com

Most downloaded Resources

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Camino Forum Store

Camino Forum Store

Casa Ivar Newsletter

Forum Donation

Forum Donation
For those with no forum account, it is possible to donate here as well. Thank you for your support! Ivar

Follow Casa Ivar on Instagram

When is the best time to walk?

  • January

    Votes: 12 1.4%
  • February

    Votes: 5 0.6%
  • March

    Votes: 37 4.4%
  • April

    Votes: 132 15.5%
  • May

    Votes: 204 24.0%
  • June

    Votes: 60 7.1%
  • July

    Votes: 17 2.0%
  • August

    Votes: 13 1.5%
  • September

    Votes: 253 29.8%
  • October

    Votes: 100 11.8%
  • November

    Votes: 12 1.4%
  • December

    Votes: 5 0.6%
Top