Okay, let’s say that every encounter you have in an opportunity for you to learn something.
Every conversation or meeting you have, whether it’s a chance meeting in the street, or an interchange online, or a board meeting or a business meeting, or a casual meeting in a cafe – any meeting or interchange is an opportunity for you to gain something from that exchange.
I’m talking about gaining a greater understanding of an aspect of yourself. Whether it has to do with your hubris, or anger, or your sense of self-worth, or your need always to dominate, or your need always to be submissive. Whatever it might be, every interchange is an opportunity for you to learn, if you approach it with self-awareness.
Hence every person you meet, or in some way interact with, is a teacher.
Now, how about we reverse it.
We always tend to look at life, and our role in it, through our own eyes. Everything always revolves around us, our journey, our hopes and dreams and aspirations.
How about we reverse it.
How about we begin to consider our life through the eyes of others. Of those we meet, who meet us.
There’s a belief that when you walk the Camino, at some stage you’ll meet your Camino Angel – someone who will do something, or say something, that will help you in some meaningful way. Whether it’s to carry your backpack, or help you with a blister, or give you much needed advice on something that’s been troubling you.
It occurred to me on my first Camino that I could be an angel for someone else. That maybe something I did, without my even being aware of it, could help someone, in some way. That thought kind of freaked me out, because I’d never thought of myself in any way angelic! haha. But you know what I mean. You could be the angel that helps someone else, without you even realising.
Some with life lessons.
Without even realising, you could create a situation that tests and challenges someone else, for them to learn and grow. Not necessarily for you, but for them.
This has just happened with me. I’ve just had a business interchange with a man who was challenged to step up to the next level, spiritually. It occurred to me that this wasn’t about my needs – which are simple: everything happens for my Highest Good. Good or bad. As Caroline Myss says in my PGS film: How do you know what’s bad? How do you know?!
No, this was an opportunity for him.
It’s an interesting way to look at life lessons – not through the lens of how we can learn and grow, but how we can offer opportunities for others to learn and grow.
And in the process, of course, we learn and grow too…
You helped me while you were on the Camino. Your writing and blog were so engaging that I hit the follow button and have been here ever since that first post in April of 2013. You didn’t know at the time how you were helping but because of your writing and blog, you and beautiful Jennifer have helped me through the worst possible times of one’s life and are opening doors to my Higher Self. If you hadn’t written that post we may never have crossed paths! Or atleast not at that time.
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Lynda – that’s such a gorgeous and generous thing to say, thank you. I haven’t set out to help you or anyone though – I’ve just used this blog and my writing generally to try and make sense of the world around me – so when I hear that others, such as yourself, have benefited in some way from that, well it’s incredibly gratifying. Thank you – and hugs back, to you and Dale! bb xx
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Again, Bill, you make us think and ponder and wonder … thanks 🙂
Thanks Britta! Looking forward to catching up again soon! bb xx
“Okay, let’s say that every encounter you have in an opportunity for you to learn something”
This is not true, though it’s certainly an ideal to strive for with all one’s strength.
“Hence every person you meet, or in some way interact with, is a teacher”
This OTOH is absolutely true.
“We always tend to look at life, and our role in it, through our own eyes. Everything always revolves around us, our journey, our hopes and dreams and aspirations.”
This is what a certain type of education tries to impose upon us, but again — it’s not true.
Everything always revolves around everything else. And all is centred upon God.
“There’s a belief that when you walk the Camino, at some stage you’ll meet your Camino Angel – someone who will do something, or say something, that will help you in some meaningful way. Whether it’s to carry your backpack, or help you with a blister, or give you much needed advice on something that’s been troubling you.
It occurred to me on my first Camino that I could be an angel for someone else. That maybe something I did, without my even being aware of it, could help someone, in some way.”
Strong Camino wisdom 🙂
“Some with life lessons”
“And in the process, of course, we learn and grow too…”
Yep, indeedy !!! 🙂
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It’s perhaps unlikely I’ll be able to do my next Camino this year.
Illness and et cetera seem to conspire against it.
OTOH, someone seems to have dumped a BLACK Pilgrim cape by my front door earlier today, which is certainly a queer surprise, given that I already have one, so it’s quite odd now to have two such capes instead !!
The Way of St James can be strange indeed ….
It’s clearly one more sign that this Camino is happening one way or another, but should I take it as meaning that I should simply ignore my present doubts, and just walk ?
God never provides a user manual in His interventions, and we’re left instead to decide His intentions for us in doubt and a degree of mystery — but this is a particularly strong and individual signal — please Bill and others, help me make some sense of it !!!
The Camino has a way of healing and miracles do happen on the Way. So maybe tis year you should try, slowly.
As for the cape you could try a segment of Bill’s “Home to the End of the World” Camino next year with Bill and share the second cape with him. I already think of Bill as a true pilgrim but going from his front door to his birthplace and on to Finisterre should make him a true pilgrim in everyone’s eyes.
I really am starting to think though that I need to do this pilgrimage ASAP
As for Bill, I don’t really do segments — if I’m on the Way, I’ll walk to Santiago.
Thanks Julian – and I don’t want anyone walking with me! I want to do it on my own!!
Good for you !!
haha – Lynda I am NOT wearing a black cape, and I’ll tell you that for free! Anyway, it’s Julian’s uniform. And I’m not doing the walk so that I can be a true pilgrim.. I still don’t know WHY I’ll be doing the walk – just like I didn’t know why I did the first one – other than I simply have to do it… bb xx
What it means to be a “true pilgrim” is strange, and I feel it has more to do with understanding and a recognition than anything else.
Bill’s most certainly a “real pilgrim”, as clearly are the great majority of those posting in here.
It goes beyond understanding “my camino”, into a deep understanding of why others are doing theirs, but fundamentally any “true pilgrim” is simply one who is recognised as such by others. Most don’t make a big deal out of it.
No pilgrim is “better” than any other anyway — perhaps the notion belongs to a particular spiritual understanding that can only come with experience and difficulty ?
It belongs anyway solely to the Way of Saint Ja
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… Saint James : no other Catholic Pilgrimage is differentiated like this by the means of travel nor by this strangely ecumenical spirituality.
I am not sure what a “true pilgrim” is, but I am pretty sure it does not have anything to do with what others think of you and your Camino. This seems to be an ageless debate that I heard while walking the Caminos and in blog posts since. I think it is meaningless to anyone but one’s self, if that. I have no idea if I was or was not, or am or am not, and furthermore, don’t care.
I think that’s the right attitude to have Steve – and I think it’s probably not inconsistent with what Julian has said… Bill
I’m starting to think I should simply chuck all worries and go.
This is one of the more strange incidents I’ve encountered.
Like I say Julian, you now have no choice… 🙂
Signs and messages come in the oddest ways Julian. You MUST do this pilgrimage. You don’t have a choice in the matter… :_
By the way, Jen and I will be coming to Cannes again this year, so I’ll email you privately as to how we might be able to catch up again. It would be great to see you again. Bill
Half time on Monaco-Dortmund, and for the time being it’s at 5-2 on aggregate — looking good !!
aaaaand we’re through !!! 🙂
Final 4 — Monaco, Real, Atletico, Juve
Champions League semi-final — Monaco-Juve
Bill…it sounds like you had some great life lessons on the Camino! My sister and I walked the Camino Frances in 2014. We’re working on an art project, NuestroCamino, about our journey and are looking to include stories from our fellow pilgrims. We’d love to have something from you! If you’re interested, you can find more details on http://www.heatherharrisart.com/nuestrocamino/#involve.