Category Archives: pilgrimage

Lost at a Tibetan Monastery (A Personal Exercise in Syncretism)

[circa 1995] As I walked up the main road through the Labrang Monastery, I had trouble finding the main square and the tour office.  On my first try, I passed through an ornate gate and into a large courtyard surrounded … Continue reading

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Homage to Dian Fossey

By Elizabeth Royte, NG, Sep 2017 On an overcast morning, with temperatures in the mid-50s, it takes me nearly two hours to hike from the outskirts of Bisate [Rwanda] through calf-deep mud and shoulder-high nettles to the research site established … Continue reading

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Ani: Capital of an Ancient Armenian Kingdom

In 1989 when my twin sons graduated from high school, the 3 of us made a 4-week tour of Turkey.  We selected Turkey because of its rich and varied history.  Of particular interest to me were the ancient Armenian ruins … Continue reading

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Galapagos Islands: Walking with Charles Darwin

I recently spent 5 days in the Galapagos Islands with my grandson, my brother, and my sister-in-law.  It was a great experience.  While the geology, geography, sea life, land biota, and scenery are great, it was the experience of walking … Continue reading

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Am I a Syncretist, an Agnostic, or Just a “None”?

The fastest growing religious category in America is “None,” or no affiliation.  I think I could be comfortable there.  Although, I generally categorize myself as an “agnostic” with a long Mormon heritage.  Even though “syncretist” has a generally negative connotation, I … Continue reading

Posted in ethiopia, my family, Personal Essays, Personalities, pilgrimage, Religion, Travel, Vocabulary | 1 Comment

The Rock Churches of Lalibela, Ethiopia

Ethiopia was the first country to accept Christianity as it’s state religion.  (Although Armenia also makes this claim.)  In the 4th century AD, Ethiopia became Christian,  before even the Roman Empire. The 13th-century rock churches of Lalibela are important Ethiopia’s … Continue reading

Posted in Africa, Art, ethiopia, History, medieval, monumental, pilgrimage, Religion, Social Justice | 3 Comments

Mammoth (the Animal) Event in Bluff Utah

In Bluff UT, during the winter solstice (21 Dec 2012), the town’s folk are going to burn a 16-foot-tall mammoth in effigy.  The mammoth will be burned at 8 pm in a ceremony complete with flaming spears to set the “mammoth” … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Entertainment, monumental, paganism, pilgrimage, utah | 4 Comments