Questions (To Ponder During Pilgrimage)

Read through the questions below. Notice which one draws you in and which one repulses you. Choose one of these and let it lead you–either through contemplation, writing, or some other way it is inviting.

What am I seeking?

Why do you stay in prison when the door is wide open? From “The Community of Spirit.” The Essential Rumi. Translated by Coleman Barks with John Moyne. San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, © 1995.

What spiritual disciplines will support me most at this point in my pilgrimage? (These may include the reading of Scripture, fasting, labyrinth walking, confession, communal worship, meditation, prayer with another person, contemplation, etc.)

Why am I here?

In what ways am I satisfied with my current level of connection with God–and in what ways am I not?

What am I resisting?

What if everything I needed was going to be provided?

What am I noticing? Perceiving?
(These are great questions to return to throughout your pilgrimage. The answers will change.)

Doorways in the inner triforium of Chartres Cathedral by Jill K H Geoffrion

What questions, ideas or actions have I come here to explore with God?

How am I taking care of myself?

What do I need to pay closer attention to?

What am I listening for?

What does it mean to be a pilgrim?

North Rose Window at the Chartres Cathedral by photographer Jill K H Geoffrion

“I beg you…to be patient toward all that is unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answers.” Rainer Maria Rilke. Letters to a Young Poet. Translated by M. D. Herter Norton (New York: Norton, 1934), 35.

How is my prayer changing?

Pilgrim, Where have you come from? Where are you headed? Where will you return to?
Who were you? Who are you? Who will you be-come?
Who have you left behind? Who are you with now? Who will welcome you home?
Why did you leave? What are you seeking? Why will you return?
What makes you feel safe? What is the source of your security? When is it easiest to trust?
Jill Kimberly Hartwell Geoffrion, Questions for Pilgrims