Passage #388: 4 February 2017

Reliquaries and Rites of Way



There are many ways to approach a bike ride: as a social event or an athletic endeavor: as a political statement or an environmental act; or, sometimes, as a simple economic necessity. This week's ride encompasses several of those, surely, but above all else we might look at it as a kind of pilgrimage.

Mind you, there is nothing particularly spiritual about the route (depending upon your theological reading of the Valley). But to be a pilgrim is more than simply to make a spiritual journey; it is also to put faith in the power of places and objects. While a far cry from the empiricist method of trusting only the observable, it does recognize the importance of presence: to form a physical relationship between oneself and a place or thing through proximity similarly creates a relationship of a different sort. One feels connected. Understanding might not yet be attained, but one is more likely to further seek it.

So this week we once again perform our rite of Passage. We visit some relics and traverse some routes. We rise above and seek perspective.


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