The literal definition of a pilgrim is a traveler who goes on a journey to a holy place, but in spiritual terms it’s a person who walks the sacred inner path to the Divine.
Being a spiritual pilgrim isn’t an easy road to walk. The road has many obstacles and challenges to overcome and there are very few resting places along the way. The obstacles on the road are not always a sign to take a different route; they can be tests of endurance or courage, taking a person to the edge of their physical or emotional limits. A Pilgrim understands that these limits reside in the egoic mind. They also know that when their ego believes it can’t take anymore and they fall to their knees, the best thing to do is stay there and pray. They know that they will receive guidance or a ‘soul’ution to the challenges they face; within divine timing. They surrender their own will and align with the Divine will instead. Trust and patience becomes their footprints.      
In today’s society where achievement and instant manifestation principles are favoured by the majority, it can be more appealing or seem easier to be a spiritual tourist instead.

So what’s the difference between a pilgrim and a tourist in spiritual terms?  : 

1. A pilgrim seeks the answers within, a tourist seeks them from any direction.
2. A pilgrim receives answers in instalments along the path, a tourist wants all the answers before they start walking. 
3. A pilgrim dedicates his/her life to the divine, a tourist fits the divine into their life.
4. A pilgrim travels light, a tourist brings a suitcase.
5. A pilgrim has to walk some of the path alone, a tourist likes to have company.
6. A pilgrim is often ‘called’; a tourist prefers to follow their own ‘calling’.
7. A pilgrim follows the path shown to them, a tourist prefers a map.
8. A pilgrim learns patience, faith and trust and can revisit the same test over and over again, a tourist generally doesn’t want to spend too much time sitting in the same classroom.
9. A pilgrim’s life is dedicated to devotional prayer, the tourist prays at certain times.
10. A pilgrim walks with consistency, a tourist walks more casually with frequent stops along the way.

There are many different travellers doing the journey and because of this diversity everyone sees and experiences the sacred in their own way. The path is universal, so ultimately everyone is heading in the same direction. Every Soul is programmed with an internal GPS system, so whether you are a pilgrim or a tourist, the destination is the same. We will all eventually return home to the Divine Source, but first we must find it within ourselves.
Our Soul knows that our journey is as important as the destination; so take some time to appreciate the beauty along the way, honour the challenges and remember that miracles surround you everywhere you look. For when the time comes to leave this Earth, all your experiences will come with you too, whether you have been a spiritual pilgrim or a spiritual tourist.

Melanie Collins is a Spiritual Teacher, Writer, Healer, Past Life Regression Therapist and Angelic Channel. She teaches about Soul Awareness, HSPs (Highly Sensitive People), Angels and the Divine Masculine and Feminine energies as part of  the  ‘Magdalene Movement’.
You can connect with her through her website: or via her Facebook page @Mel Collins or on Twitter @MelCollins444.

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Comment by Mel Collins on October 13, 2016 at 12:52pm

Hi Regina. Sorry! I have expanded it to reach just over  500 words now and added a bio. Thank you for the reminder :) Mel

Comment by Regina Chouza on October 12, 2016 at 7:54pm

Hi Melanie, 

This article is really interesting but at 329 words, it is a tad short. Would you be able to expand on the thought? Our length guidelines are for submissions to be in the 500-800 word range. 

Please include an author bio at the end as well (up to 60 words). 

Thank you!


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