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3 Dec, 2013

How Spiritual Tourism Might Change the World | Ben Bowler

One of the first challenges for those interested in “spiritual tourism” is defining exactly what it is. Believers taking part in religious pilgrimages such as Muslims doing the Hajj or Buddhists visiting the four sacred sites in India and Nepal are plainly recognised as “spiritual tourists” as are the 500 000 people belonging to various faiths (or none) who annually walk the Camino de Santiago (Way of St. James). But what about the avalanche of tourists who visit say Notre Dame to admire her architecture and history – are they really spiritual tourists or is there a different category again for spiritual sightseers? How about my own visit to the Australian war memorial in the Somme where my grandfather fought in World War 1 – was this a kind of “spiritual tourism”? Some commentators would say yes. some say no, the only thing for sure is that the debate about definitions is bound to go on for a while..

Read the rest: How Spiritual Tourism Might Change the World | Ben Bowler.