If practised long enough to become a habit, the act of walking stop being just phisical exercise, contact with nature or social occasion. For believers and non-believers alike, it’s hard to ignore the spiritual side of it. Going into a wood, the sudden halt to all everyday bustle inevitably prompts one to reflect.
When does hiking become a pilgrimage? Where does photography ends and life begins?
And then, the spirit of Saint Francis lingers in the trees, still capable of exerting an allure and credibility on 21st century people regardless of religious faith, thanks to the modernity of the values he embodies. Has he been more influential on Western culture as an environmentalist or as a saint? How much do a minimalist and a hermit have in common?
On the 21st of December we really felt like going on a pre-Christmas hike, but I was still recovering from an ankle injury, so we had to make do with two short walks:
1) From the Monastery of Camaldoli to the Hermitage on trail CAI n°68;
2) Form La Beccia to the Sanctuary of La Verna on the cobblestone road (trail CAI n°053).