Coronavirus Pilgrimage 3/21

It has been a long time since I’ve written in my blog. I have so much writing for work and for school that I don’t have much energy left for other writing. But we are going into reading week at school. Because of the coronavirus, I will be working from home a lot, which frees up a bunch of commuting time. So, I’m setting out to write a little bit more, at least for the time being.

Today has been an odd day, the first day in a long time that I haven’t felt pressured by deadlines. Sure, I have papers to write for school and posts to write for work, but I don’t really have to work on any of them today. Also, church is canceled this evening.

My big paper for this semester is a research paper for Buddhism in the West. I’m looking at the relationship between Buddhism and the Beat movement. I’m looking at the writings of the ninth century Chinese poet, Han Shan, translated Cold Mountain. Maybe I’ll watch the movie Cold Mountain sometime during this time.

I’m balancing ninth century Chinese poetry, contemporary academic writing, and Kerouac’s On The Road.

It is a mild sunny early spring day. I went to the walking fields in town. The parking lot was full. Fortunately, the area is very spread out, so I walked a lot while managing to keep an appropriate distance from everyone. As I walked, I listened to “On The Road” on an audiobook loaded onto my cellphone as I played Pokemon.

I thought about pilgrimages, loosely defined, and here I could veer off into one of the academic discussion. The pilgrimage in Cold Mountain. The pilgrimage in On the Road. The pilgrimage we are all going through around the pandemic. My personal pilgrimage. We are all on pilgrimages every day. Sometimes, we even notice it.

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