The Magdalene Affect

It’s difficult to explain a pilgrimage. The idea of a journey is to start out and let the experience tell the story. Pilgrimage is about life. Conditioned in our culture to achieve, the experience of simply putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward begins to shift our perspective to offer an affect that is multi-layered.

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It’s difficult to explain a pilgrimage. The idea of a journey is to start out and let the experience tell the story. Pilgrimage is about life. Conditioned in our culture to achieve, the experience of simply putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward begins to shift our perspective to offer an affect that is multi-layered. To trust the journey and remain open to what it will reveal is the challenge. Like a multi-faceted diamond, the spiritual journey invites reflection on many levels of one’s life experience. This is what emerged as the author considered her own spiritual journey in the context of the French voyage… Writing one’s story might seem egocentric at first. However, the process is not only informative but also cathartic. The narrative connects us with the larger epic of what has gone before, bringing the writer to where she finds herself in the present moment. The work becomes a gift of awareness not previously recognized or even considered. It offers a celebration of one’s life. While the reader may not agree with the writer’s position, the hope is that the act of telling the story and how it affected her ongoing discernment process will encourage others to find their own voice and honor their own experience. As women, we often fall into a pattern of trying to “fit in” while the bigger challenge is to “fill out” the meaning and mystery of our lived experience and how it connects us to one another. I encourage the reader to take the challenge! In a world of diverse voices, there is a common song we all share. It is why these archetypal women and modern-day seekers continue to have something to tell us, if we are able to be still and listen. B.J. Lawrence, Easter 2014