Special Issue "Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage"

A special issue of Religions (ISSN 2077-1444).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 March 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Professor Chadwick Co Sy Su

Assistant Professor, University of the Philippines Manila, College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Arts and Communication, Padre Faura Street, Ermita 1000 Manila, the Philippines
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Secular pilgrimage; communication research; LGBT rights
Guest Editor
Professor Ian McIntosh

Director of International Partnerships, Adjunct Professor of Anthropology, Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, ES2129 902 W New York Street, Indianapolis, IN 46208, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Pilgrimage studies; religious tourism; indigenous rights

Special Issue Information

The latest research indicates that more than 400 million people embark annually on traditional pilgrimages in Saudi Arabia, India, Japan, and elsewhere, with the numbers steadily increasing. Pilgrimage is one of the most ancient practices of humankind and is associated with a great variety of religious and spiritual traditions, beliefs and sacred geographies. As a global phenomenon, these sacred journeys facilitate interaction between and among diverse peoples from countless cultures, occupations, and walks of life. In the 4th Global Conference held in Beijing, China, we explored the many personal, interpersonal, intercultural, and international dimensions of these often profound journeys. This included similarities and differences in the practice in Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, Taoism, and other traditions, as well as secular pilgrimage. The Sacred Journeys project covers all aspects of this phenomenon, including the impact of the internet and globalization, pilgrimage as protest, and pilgrimage and peace building, and the concepts of the internal pilgrimage and the journey of self-discovery.

Other related themes are (1) pilgrimage and the marketplace; (2) the metaphor of the journey as explored by writers, artists, performers, and singers, including humanists, agnostics, atheists, and musicians; (3) pilgrimage and ‘miracles’ and the related topic of thanksgiving; and (4) ‘dark’ pilgrimages to sites of remembrance and commemoration.

Dear Colleagues,

The proposed special issue / E-Book will bring together 12+ of the best papers from the Sacred Journeys 4th Global Conference, which was held at the Indiana University Gateway in Beijing on October 26-27, 2017. Topics included pilgrimage, religious tourism, and study abroad, and included:

Pain and Delight on the Camino

Lady Walsingham and Contemporary Christianity

Lepers and Pilgrims in Assisi

Heretical Pilgrimage of Luzman

Walking Meditation on the Camino

Sacred Caves and Mountains in the Philippines

Commodification of the Dead

Peace Pilgrimages in Asia

Osaka’s 13 Buddha Pilgrimage

Seeing Study Abroad as a Pilgrimage

Experiencing and Teaching Pilgrimage

Don Juan Tenoso

Marketing Communications in Religious Tourism

Heritage Pilgrimage in NYC’s Lower East Side

Micropilgrimages

Plastination as Pilgrimage

Sacred journeys / pilgrimage is the fastest growing element of the global tourism industry. This set of papers will be of considerable interest to students, scholars, and practitioners of both tourism and religious and heritage tourism. It will also be of interest to those in the social sciences, in particular anthropology and sociology, and history and also heritage and cultural studies. A rich and diverse collection of interdisciplinary voices from across the globe are gathered together in this volume celebrating pilgrimage, one of humankind’s most ancient practices. It will be of interest to a global readership. Many publications on pilgrimage or religious tourism are either narrowly focused on specific sites, like the Camino in Spain, the Hajj in Mecca or the Kumbh Mela in India, or they tend to be the work of academics working in very focused areas. The distinguishing feature of our proposed special issue/eBook is that we have strong representation by scholars and practitioners alike from many walks of life, both from the developing and the developed world. We have writers who are strong in their faith, who see pilgrimage as an avenue for coming closer to their deity, and others who do not practice religion at all and yet see pilgrimage as desirable, meaningful, and life-changing.

 

Prof. Chadwick Co Sy Su
Prof. Dr. Ian McIntosh
Prof. Dr. Alexandria Egler
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Religions is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage
Religions 2018, 9(9), 259; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9090259
Received: 31 July 2018 / Revised: 27 August 2018 / Accepted: 27 August 2018 / Published: 29 August 2018
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Abstract
Pilgrimage, being an ancient practice and a global phenomenon, continues to gain a growing
interest among scholars as its scope traverses many other disciplines and perspectives.[...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage)

Research

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Open AccessArticle Return to the Sacred: The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham and Contemporary Christianity
Religions 2018, 9(6), 196; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060196
Received: 9 March 2018 / Revised: 24 May 2018 / Accepted: 25 May 2018 / Published: 20 June 2018
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Abstract
Once one of the most popular Catholic pilgrimage sites in England, The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, now under the care of the Anglican Church, operates as a site of devotion, but it also operates as a site of memory. In this
[...] Read more.
Once one of the most popular Catholic pilgrimage sites in England, The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, now under the care of the Anglican Church, operates as a site of devotion, but it also operates as a site of memory. In this essay, I will argue that, in this place of memory, where pre-Reformation worship meets contemporary devotion and tourism, we find insights for the contemporary church. The Protestant Reformation contributed to the desacralization of the world. Later events such as the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution, and the Scientific Revolution of the past two centuries have shifted Western attitudes about the natural world even further away from the sacred. However, every year, thousands of visitors come to Walsingham. What draws them? What are they seeking? To consider what a shrine such as Walsingham might mean to a pilgrim, I will examine Philip earl of Arundel’s poetic lament at the destruction of the shrine, William Shakespeare’s nostalgia for the sacred feminine in The Winter’s Tale, and Robert Lowell’s 1947 poetic treatment of Walsingham. I will argue that focusing on sacred spaces, particularly those associated with the sacred feminine can benefit contemporary Catholics and Protestants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage)
Open AccessArticle Planetary Consciousness, Witnessing the Inhuman, and Transformative Learning: Insights from Peace Pilgrimage Oral Histories and Autoethnographies
Religions 2018, 9(5), 148; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9050148
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 27 April 2018 / Accepted: 27 April 2018 / Published: 3 May 2018
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Abstract
This article describes insights and consciousness transformations reported in several contemporary peace pilgrimage oral histories and autoethnographies, including my own. Autoethnography is a form of autobiographical writing that stresses the interpretation of experiences in their psychosocial, cultural, and historical contexts. Peace pilgrimages are
[...] Read more.
This article describes insights and consciousness transformations reported in several contemporary peace pilgrimage oral histories and autoethnographies, including my own. Autoethnography is a form of autobiographical writing that stresses the interpretation of experiences in their psychosocial, cultural, and historical contexts. Peace pilgrimages are typically self-defined journeys and projects which may be inward and metaphorical, or which may involve actual travel to destinations that memorialize historical events of mass killing and profound suffering, and places that envision, cultivate and educate for global or inner peace. The insights and learnings include (a) the call to journey and other out-of-the-ordinary communications; (b) understanding the transformative learning process; (c) glimpsing the meaning of planetary consciousness; and (d) bearing witness to the inhuman. These paradigmatic themes may be applicable to one’s personal search for meaning, and as signposts for collective, societal healing from psychic and social wounding and traumas. The themes may be useful for educators and researchers in peace studies, religious studies, history, biography, philosophy, psychology and consciousness studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage)
Open AccessArticle Heading to Chaityabhoomi: Pilgrimages of Remembrance
Religions 2018, 9(4), 111; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9040111
Received: 28 February 2018 / Revised: 1 April 2018 / Accepted: 2 April 2018 / Published: 4 April 2018
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Abstract
This article explores individual and collective pilgrimages to the Mumbai-based cremation ground (samādhi) of Bhimrao Ramji (Babasaheb) Ambedkar (1891–1956), a renowned economist and lawyer, academician and philosopher, political leader and social reformer who dedicated his life to the struggle for rights of
[...] Read more.
This article explores individual and collective pilgrimages to the Mumbai-based cremation ground (samādhi) of Bhimrao Ramji (Babasaheb) Ambedkar (1891–1956), a renowned economist and lawyer, academician and philosopher, political leader and social reformer who dedicated his life to the struggle for rights of the untouchables (Dalits) in India. In October 1956, Dr. Ambedkar together with almost half a million of low-caste followers converted to Buddhism. After Babasaheb’s death on 6 December, 1956, his cremation ground became an object of worship for Buddhists and adherents of other religions. In December 1971, on the eve of the 15th year of his demise, the Chaityabhoomi memorial was inaugurated there. A dramatic increase in the number of pilgrims coming from all across India to Dr. Ambedkar’s samādhi as well as to other places associated with him has become instrumental in building up Dalits’ sites of memory/lieux de mémoire in contemporary India. The growing interest to Chaityabhoomi has also acquired a political dimension in contemporary India. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage)
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Open AccessArticle Experiencing and Teaching Pilgrimage in a Sacred Spaces Course
Religions 2018, 9(4), 102; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9040102
Received: 28 February 2018 / Revised: 27 March 2018 / Accepted: 28 March 2018 / Published: 30 March 2018
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Abstract
As part of an integrated studies curriculum at the author’s college, all juniors must take a Reflections course in which students consider personal values and analyze familiar and unfamiliar systems of thought and belief, in order to explore their own and others’ ideas
[...] Read more.
As part of an integrated studies curriculum at the author’s college, all juniors must take a Reflections course in which students consider personal values and analyze familiar and unfamiliar systems of thought and belief, in order to explore their own and others’ ideas about the ultimate meaning and purposes of life. “Sacred Places Past and Present”, is a course designed to fulfil this requirement. This course focuses on a number of important religious sites in the ancient Mediterranean and in the modern world, including the Parthenon, Olympia, Delphi, Stonehenge, and Muir Woods. These places are compared and contrasted in terms of what makes them sacred. Two pilgrimage experiences are part of this course: the hajj to Mecca and the Camino de Santiago de Compostela. In the past, the unit on the Camino focused on Emilio Estevez’s 2010 film “The Way”; however, during the summer of 2016, the author walked the Camino de Santiago. As a result, the course was substantially revised to reflect the author’s own personal experiences as a pilgrim. In particular, Paulo Coelho’s The Pilgrimage was incorporated into the course and students were given an opportunity to participate in a one-day pilgrimage walk in western Illinois. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage)
Open AccessArticle The Crossroads of Plastination and Pilgrimage
Religions 2018, 9(3), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9030087
Received: 28 February 2018 / Revised: 14 March 2018 / Accepted: 14 March 2018 / Published: 18 March 2018
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Abstract
At the Singapore Science Centre in 2010, I went to Body Worlds, an exhibit set up by the Institute for Plastination, founded by Gunther von Hagens. As I later learned, he pioneered plastination—the art, science, and technique of preserving entire bodies and body
[...] Read more.
At the Singapore Science Centre in 2010, I went to Body Worlds, an exhibit set up by the Institute for Plastination, founded by Gunther von Hagens. As I later learned, he pioneered plastination—the art, science, and technique of preserving entire bodies and body parts for use in medical and anatomical research, exhibition, or both. A few months after, I made the decision to donate my body after death to the Institute under arrangements similar to that of a Living Will. In my visits to two other Body World exhibits in Germany and the Netherlands, I have seen organs perfectly preserved and had thoughts occur to me that one day, I may well be an exhibit specimen instead of an exhibit attendee. By establishing a connection with existing pilgrimage literature; and using a combination of thick description and pragmatic analyses; this paper puts forward the proposition that visits to these; and other similar; exhibits constitute a pilgrimage of and to the self. The paper also discusses the ethics and practical consequences of body donation; and evaluates the arguments for and against the body donation decision from the lenses of the person making the donation; the person’s significant others; and societal influencers. The paper concludes by suggesting take-off points in discussing the connection between plastination and pilgrimage; particularly in the contexts of intercultural communication and religious studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage)
Open AccessArticle Walking Meditation: Being Present and Being Pilgrim on the Camino de Santiago
Religions 2018, 9(3), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9030082
Received: 7 March 2018 / Revised: 10 March 2018 / Accepted: 12 March 2018 / Published: 15 March 2018
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Abstract
The Camino de Santiago has witnessed an unprecedented number of walkers in recent years. Traditionalists feel that the Camino is suffering from excess—too many visitors and too much strain on the infrastructure, accompanied by an ignorance of what it means to be an
[...] Read more.
The Camino de Santiago has witnessed an unprecedented number of walkers in recent years. Traditionalists feel that the Camino is suffering from excess—too many visitors and too much strain on the infrastructure, accompanied by an ignorance of what it means to be an “authentic” pilgrim. Contemporary pilgrims often use ancillary services to transport their bags, approaching the Camino as an athletic event or a holiday excursion. For scholars and people of faith, these superficial attitudes to the ancient pilgrimage route are disturbing. How can serious pilgrims make peace with those who have neither the historical nor the religious background to understand the magnitude of their endeavor? Vietnamese Zen master and peace activist Thich Nhat Hahn offers us the practice of walking meditation as a means of being present. I believe that pilgrims can benefit from studying the principles of walking meditation as it is observed in the Buddhist tradition. Pilgrims of all faiths and backgrounds can make use of Thich Nhat Hahn’s practice to enhance their experience. Travelers who incorporate the custom of walking meditation may find common ground. Certainly, those who choose to do walking meditation while on pilgrimage will be more mindful of their journey. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Journeys: Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage)
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