Santiago – Finisterre – Muxia – Santiago

Today I feel like having material for at least 3 posts! 

I start with one. My post Santiago walking has been delightful! After resting in Finisterre I decided to continue walking to Muxia, two days of 15 km each. Then I stayed for 3 days in Muxia. And then I found a place where a lady was offering an after Camino space for a few days which I enjoyed for three nights.

Muxia is the place which suffered the most when the oil tanker Prestige sank before the coast and lost 50000 l of oil in 2002. Of course this was a castastrophy for every being living at the coast in this area. The story goes that the oil has been mostly cleaned up by now. 

And Muxia has been a famous place for thousands of years. People used to come here to honor three or more sacred rocks right at the edge with the ocean. Later a church was built close to the rocks and they were reinterpreted as symbolizing the boat that Mary arrived on to help Santiago when he was touring Spain.

The rocks called people from far away long before somebody came up with the story about Santiago. 

I don’t know if the legend about Santiago has a true story at it’s root. Walking the Camino de Santiago is obviously powerful for many people. This might be because it has been a sacred path for much longer or / and it is loaded with all the deep wishes of millions of pilgrims over the years.

For me walking beyond Santiago has been very different from the 5 weeks until then. If the Camino until Santiago was mirroring my life to me, possibly the more visible or material part of life, beyond Santiago it felt like walking into more subtle regions of life, much lighter, more possibilities, also lots of insights. As if I had a clear view of my life, the chances I did not take and the decisions I have taken which define my life now. 

After the time in the retreat house, I was freed from another layer of restrictions, that I thought were valid. Now I know I always have a choice if I want to stay in the box of a system or not. Very liberating indeed.

I read one of those books that describe how we create our reality with our thoughts. And for the first time I had the feeling I really understood the idea, it felt like somebody had handed me the key to the universe. I dared for the first time to ask the universe for a new way of being, not ‘just’ a thing, like having a red bicycle. In a recent conversation I had remembered that what makes me really happy is creative and playful and deep interaction with people and nature. And I wished for this sort of happiness.

I already enjoyed two days of of happy encounters now! And imagine one was with Louis from Argentina who was one of the many pilgrims who came walking to me as I was walking against the stream of pilgrims the last two days. He stopped to talk to me and suggested to me to travel to Central America and then after he shared his reason for walking the camino, I shared my new insight about playing with the universe and he remindd me that this is just another model. Yes! This kind of exchange I like!

Oh, and I started to have short interactions with the flowers on the way, like little dances of which I wish to have many more. And this beautiful experience on the rocks in Muxia. As part of my walking practice I ask the heaven to give through me what the earth needs and then I ask the earth to send through me what the heaven needs. 

Sometimes it feels like I can merge with the earth more closely. When I was practicing this on one of the rocks, it felt like it was opening to me, it felt soft and my impulse was to touch it gently and then lie down. A very sensual and graceful moment. And I think a part of me was invited to go even deeper. And I like to believe that there I found the key to the universe.

While I was in the retreat place I decided to walk back to Santiago where I arrived again today. The walking back feels and felt like grounding all my insights from the subtle world in the more material world.

Finisterre

Today on my 42nd day of walking since I started the Camino in St. Jean Pied de Port, I arrived in Finisterre, the so-called end of the world. It feels good. 

Since I left Santiago I met some new Camino friends. Three of us had the traditional bath in the sea together and took each other’s photos. Tonight we’ll meet at the lighthouse to burn a piece of clothing and watch the sunset. All three pilgrim traditions. If you follow those there is a chance to wake up as a new person the next day. 

The atmosphere on this last part of the camino was very different. To me it felt like we left a lot of stress and pain and blisters behind in Santiago. 

It really felt like entering a new and time-less field. Relaxing. I spread the last 88km for 5 days to arrive on the 42nd day, expecting to receive the answer to everything tonight. 

I am booked into a private room in an albergue for two nights and have no plans what to do afterwards. That feels weird. A part of me clearly prefers to have a plan, however recently it mostly came as an impulse, so we’ll see.

What a privilege to walk to beautiful places and then wait for new impulses. At least for the next two weeks, as my flight is booked from Porto for June 19th.

The most interesting insight on the way so far for me, was to see how seemingly everybody was in a bit of a rush to get to Santiago, often because of the time of the vacation ending or other commitments. And that is ok, of course, but to feel, how I was affected by it and how difficult it was for me to find my own pace. Only when I had found my own pace, I could bring more focus to my walking practice. Then to notice how much focus it needs to go deep with the practice while being on a trail that so many people walk on = being in the marketplace of life.

That is partly what the practice is about, bringing sacredness to every day. And I feel like a beginner in practicing. After my little meltdown in Santiago, I noticed how I tend to not respect the light and sacredness I am here to bring to this world. I feel a little bit closer to believing in myself now, grateful for being accepted as a scholar.