Mel's Healing Pilgrimage 2016

Links to the Camino de Santiago pilgrimages are on the navigation links to the right of the web page.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Camino de Santiago - What's on your playlist? (Preparing #8)

The Long and Winding Road
by John Lennon and Paul McCartney

The long and winding road that leads to your door
Will never disappear
I've seen that road before it always leads me here
Leads me to your door

The wild and windy night that the rain washed away
Has left a pool of tears crying for the day
Why leave me standing here, let me know the way
Many times I've been alone and many times I've cried
Anyway you'll never know the many ways I've tried
And still they lead me back to the long and winding road
You left me standing here a long, long time ago
Don't leave me waiting here, lead me to you door

But still they lead me back to the long and winding road
You left me standing here a long, long time ago
Don't keep me waiting here (Don't keep me wait), lead me to you door
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

Yes, I created a playlist of music for my walk along the Camino de Santiago. I don't intend to listen to it while actually walking along the route, but I may do so while trying to sleep in the crowded hostels. Snoring? No problem, as long as I have music pointing me towards the arms of Morpheus.

The music ranges from TaizĂ© hymns to rock classics, from Glee-pop to Russian church hymns, from show tunes and musicals to jazz sets. It always fascinates how humans link music and emotions. And on something as deeply personal as a pilgrimage, you explore a wide range of feelings that may be most easily tapped by leaning on song. Since my journey will hopefully nourish me, pointing me towards ultimate Love itself, I can't imagine leaving a tool like music behind.

If music be the food of love, play on
- Duke Orsino in "Twelfth Night", William Shakespeare

Do you listen to music on your journey?

To some, music is all you need. Many today don't find higher meaning in God; young people in particular find that Truth and connections are more found sincerely, intimately, authentically in music alone. Sometimes they create the music themselves, but more often than not, they rely on lyrics, melodies, and rhythms to reveal deep understanding. I know I certainly experienced such ecstatic understanding when I was younger.

Are these revelations through music misleading or inadequate? I would disagree intensely. Even today, I sing in my church choir because the music and hymns reinforce and reveal layers that the word alone may leave unseen. Some discover insight both in the sound of horns and strings, or in the silence between the beats. The connections made while listening to music reach into parts of the brain that defy simple logic. The difference between Belief and Not Belief is that whereas some find that music reveals Truth without a Creator, I find that it reveals Truth because the Holy Spirit is working.

At some point, perhaps, I'll be sitting in a pub or hall listening to music with other peregrinos and remarking on our journeys. Whether the music appeals universally to everyone in the room is irrelevant. We are bound together in a song of love and discovery that transcends simple preferences. We will be following some long and winding road that leads to the doors of Santiago de Compostela.

So sing along with me, with us all, as we walk together.

Thank you and bless you for joining me on this transformational journey.

I leave Los Angeles on September 10 and land in Spain September 11.

Please walk with me by donating to Episcopal Relief and Development

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