Search 59,165 Camino Questions

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


Advertisement
Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.
Donation to the Forum
A donation to this forum helps it continue to exists and also removes all ads for you.

Simple life.

Ian Holdsworth

Active Member
Many people who have walked the Caminos, come home with important life lessons. These
lessons include:- travel light and do not carry what you don't need, relate to ours in a deeper
way, spend time in silence and prayer.... there are many others. I have been wondering two things that I would value a few comments on , first ; what are the lessons that we come back with and
second; what sort of full on experience do you have of putting the lessons into practice.
For example, you may have learnt about living a simple life, how have you adapted your life to engage with the truth that you have learnt. And how successful have you been. What difference has it made. Ian H
 
Camino Socks
Browse the Camino Socks collection on the forum shop
A thought-provoking Camino memoir. This day-by-day account will inspire you.
Past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
The Camino has a way of stripping us bare and rebuilding us. It pushes us to the edge, breaks us, physically and often emotionally, burns the dross, then mends us, making us stronger than before.

It teaches us coping skills. It gives us the opportunity to step away from rampant consumerism and reminds us what true FREEDOM feels like. We don't need new cars when we have strong feet! We don't need boats, the latest outfit, hair-dos and makeup. We don't need perfume and nylon stockings and high heels. Nor do we need fast food! It is such a joy not to have telephones ringing, televisions blaring, and traffic rushing every moment. It is such a blessing to be able to take time to smell the flowers, look at the sunrise, pet the dogs, drink clean water from a fountain, and share stories with people from all parts of the world, laughing at our differences and being amazed at our similarities.

It gives us confidence. Just experiencing how happy one can be with only what fits in a backpack gives a totally different perspective on life. I find myself shopping less and constantly cleaning out "things" that don't have a use or great meaning to me. Taking time to pray and reflect each day gave me the strength to make important decisions for my life.

Lastly, we learn to trust and respect ourselves after such a pilgrimage. We learn we CAN do things we never thought possible! We learn just how strong we really are!
 

nellpilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
SDC-Fisterra 08/Camino Frances SJPP to SDC 09/Nuremburg-SDC 11- ongoing
Well said Annie-I'll second that!
Nell
 

pat.holland

Member
Past OR future Camino
C F 2007-10, Le Puy St. Jean 2011-13, C P 2015 Via F 2016-7
I agree totally with the earlier posts and would add the thought that there are things we learn that we wanted to find, whatever we went to the Camino for, be it spiritual, religious, historical, art, wine, fun or whatever. and then there are the things we did not expect to learn. I for example did not expect the cameraderie of the pilgrim but was looking forward to the historical/art and the walking. I did not expect becoming a 'pilgrim' ie something more than a walker and remember the shock/surprise when I first heard a spanish person refer to me as a pilgrim when I have long left organised religion behind. I did not expect the welcome from Spanish people along the way and the palpable sense of 'keeping an eye on the pilgrims' which is shown when a person comes out of doorway to direct you when they see going astray.

So to conclude there are lessons we want to get and there are those we do not expect to get. I am wondering here if the ones we dont expect to get come mostly from the world about us and the ones we want relate to our internal thinking life?
 

pat.holland

Member
Past OR future Camino
C F 2007-10, Le Puy St. Jean 2011-13, C P 2015 Via F 2016-7
ps I never expected to meet so many extraordinary people who were walking home to Italy or who had walked to Jerusalem for example, many of them retirees/pensioners. This was a great lesson, as I pass a significant birthday, 50, I now know that there is so much significant walking potential ahead of me when I may not be able to walk up steep mountains. A totally unexpected lesson so was the life affirming nature of the Camino for retirees/pensioners.
 
A thought-provoking Camino memoir. This day-by-day account will inspire you.
Camino Socks
Browse the Camino Socks collection on the forum shop

Tangaa

New Member
One of the major things I learned was gratitude.
It really struck me how little it takes to make one feel grateful.
- A friendly word on the way
- A hospitalero offering you a glass of water when you arrive at the albergue.
No big gesture - but a world of difference anyway.
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Past OR future Camino
Many, various, and continuing.
I learned to love silence. I lost a lot of my tolerance for meaningless background racket.
A direct result of my first camino was getting rid of the TV in my house. If there´s a program I just have to watch, I´ll go somewhere else to see it. Meantime, I´ve won back several hours of time each evening that used to go completely to waste, and I save all the money that used to go to pay cable TV connection bills.

It was a lot easier than I thought it would be.
 

Bridget and Peter

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Home to Reims 2007
Reims to Limoges 2008
Camino Ingles 2009
Limoges to Gernica 2009
Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
San Vicente to La Isla 2012
La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
Rebekah Scott said:
I learned to love silence. I lost a lot of my tolerance for meaningless background racket.
A direct result of my first camino was getting rid of the TV in my house. If there´s a program I just have to watch, I´ll go somewhere else to see it. Meantime, I've won back several hours of time each evening that used to go completely to waste, and I save all the money that used to go to pay cable TV connection bills.

I recognize that - I struggled with the background chatter (in English) on the ferry home last month after the quiet of the camino. We are watching much less television - just a few programmes which we have chosen to watch. I have stopped buying a Saturday newspaper with all it's supplements which has meant more time and less mess by my bed. I feel less in need of constant stimulation from outside myself. A little better at being still. (this is Bridget, Peter learnt how to be still ages ago when ME/CFS struck!)

Doing the camino in stages there have been different lessons each time:
2007 - learning to trust that we could 'strike out into the unknown' and be OK - that we don't need to have so much control over details. That is standing us in good stead at the moment when we are going through a big life change. (Retirement die to ill health, selling the house we have lived in for 27 years....)
2008 - discovering the beauty of medieval church architecture - appreciating the insights of Christians over the past 2000 years - putting some perspective on our faith position - taking what 'I' believe out of the centre
2009 - beginning to meet other pilgrims, sharing space and resources, accepting differences
2010 - learning to accept our own and each other's weaknesses and frailties better, and to recognise when we are coming to the end of our strength and stopping - and accepting love and care from strangers. (Tears behind my eyes as I write this!) To then come home to the pile of letters containing the news that a doctor had recommended that I am no longer able to do the job I trained for later in life and love ..... poor timing from a personnel management point of view, but maybe God's timing was perfect!

Definitely life changing, this camino stuff!
 

pat.holland

Member
Past OR future Camino
C F 2007-10, Le Puy St. Jean 2011-13, C P 2015 Via F 2016-7
Dear Brigid and Peter, thanks for such a deep and honest message.

It has made me wonder 'Is it that these lessons were ones we were or could learn anyway but that the Camino has helped us to learn them sooner/faster/better?'

I exclude the lesson about architecture but many of the other lessons, and those mentioned in a thread called one year on under misc topics are the sort of lessons that we tend to learn as we go through life. Many of them are about coming to terms with life and with changes, changes beyond our control. So I wonder are many of us going to the Camino to have a space in which to deal with, process, come to terms with change ?

I am deeply interested in change so please excuse me if I have imposed my views on your very personal message.
Pat.
 
Learn how to Get "Camino Ready " 2nd Edition. In English, Spanish, German and Korean
2022 Camino Guides
The 2022 Camino guides will be coming out little by little, most of them by the end of 2021. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.

dmmorris

Member
Ian-Great question!

Pilgrims- great sharing of lessons learned and applied and even more great questions such as Pats... and I "wonder" with you Pat.

Your question Ian, how are folks applying lessons learned? This has been heavy on my heart because I need balance in my life and how will I apply it? I already live a fairly simple life. Two yrs. ago I went from country living with animals and wildflowers to a 2 bedroom apt in town. It was an easy adjustment for me to downsize. I've never been into fashion, hate to shop, and am not materialistic so that too helps. I never had much time for t.v. but for some reason, on my own, found myself watching weekly programs so it was a good thing when a neighbor moved out and I found myself without cable. I'd been getting it for free! After he moved, I chose not to buy cable because I was now spending more time reading and writing. So that's one application I can share before even having left for the Camino yet.

So, while simplicity comes easily for me, balance is a challenge. I will walk the Camino with balance on my mind. I've been hiking for a month locally now and find myself meditating naturally. Like Pat, I have forgone "organized" religion but yet God is real and dear to me. I have become open to a broader range of spirituality. Anyhow, for fear of digressing further... I like your question and hope to hear more of other people's applications as Annie and others have shared.

Grazie~ Denise
 

Bridget and Peter

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Home to Reims 2007
Reims to Limoges 2008
Camino Ingles 2009
Limoges to Gernica 2009
Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
San Vicente to La Isla 2012
La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
pat.holland said:
It has made me wonder 'Is it that these lessons were ones we were or could learn anyway but that the Camino has helped us to learn them sooner/faster/better?'

pat.holland said:
I exclude the lesson about architecture but many of the other lessons, and those mentioned in a thread called one year on under misc topics are the sort of lessons that we tend to learn as we go through life. Many of them are about coming to terms with life and with changes, changes beyond our control. So I wonder are many of us going to the Camino to have a space in which to deal with, process, come to terms with change ?

Yes, these are themes we revisit time and time again during our life, it's true, in all sorts of serendipitous ways. After all, change happens all the time, or should, surely, in a developing person. But yes, I think we are using the Camino as a support for change.

Interestingly the first time the Camino came into our awareness, through a friend, we paid it little attention! But four years ago we were gripped by it. Consciously I think we were attracted by the challenge - having an aim for an adventure, with a spiritual, historical, cultural focus.
But this was a time when my career was beginning to cause stress problems, and Peter was pretty fed up with the ME/CFS which clearly was not going to depart from his/our lives. We had a big family of teens and young adults who were delightful but sometimes demanding. We needed to nurture ourselves, individually and as a couple. That first stage, cycling from Hook of Holland to Reims, was a gift of time and space which nourished us in all sorts of ways. We didn't know that it would, but it did. Since then we have been more conscious of how the Camino supports us through our difficulties, and so that has definitely become part of the reason for going. But we do not find the same things each time, nor do we look for them. We really enjoy not knowing what is going to turn up!

When I went off sick last November ( a month after returning from our 2009 stage) I was very low, and had a yearning to pack up a backpack and go off to Spain immediately, just to walk for weeks. I knew really it was not the right time, I was just wanting to escape something, and I was not strong enough. (Nor was Peter) But when we decided (only in February, I think) to go in April, it was because we were both feeling better, and aware that decisions and changes were being forced on us, and wanted to go, not to have the space to think and make decisions, but to be nourished and fortified for whatever the future held.

We have all met people on the Camino who are there with a particular focus - a recent bereavement, a relationship breakdown, a desire to make a new start in life. It would be interesting to hear how life moved on after the pilgrimage.

...?
 

dmmorris

Member
"Bridget and Peter"]Yes, these are themes we revisit time and time again during our life, it's true, in all sorts of serendipitous ways. After all, change happens all the time, or should, surely, in a developing person. But yes, I think we are using the Camino as a support for change.

I'm trying my first attempt at "quoting"... please forgive me if I mess it up!

Thank you Bridget.

I value your insight and reflections. I remember my ex-husband complaining about my "changing" and yet I felt that I was growing and he was not and what was wrong with change? It took me a while to accept, without guilt, that my "developing person" was a good thing!! I look forward to more "development" on the Camino!

Grazie~ Denise
 

Did not find what you were looking for? Search here

Popular Resources

“All” Albergues on the Camino Frances in one pdf ivar
  • Featured
“All” Albergues on the Camino Frances in one pdf
4.95 star(s) 102 ratings
Downloads
15,346
Updated
A selection of favorite albergues on the Camino Francés Ton van Tilburg
Favorite Albergues along the Camino Frances
4.83 star(s) 35 ratings
Downloads
8,006
Updated
Profile maps of all 34 stages of the Camino Frances ivar
Profile maps of all 34 stages of the Camino Frances
4.88 star(s) 24 ratings
Downloads
7,777
Updated

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Camino Updates on YouTube

Camino Conversations

Most downloaded Resources

Top