NCSR 2008 - Urban Diversity and Religious Traditions
13-15 August 2008, Åbo Akademi University

Pilgrimages as a Trait of Contemporary Rituals and New Form of Spirituality

Helena Vilaça, University of Porto

Pilgrimage can be conceived as one of the most representative phenomenon of contemporary religious rituality. This approach includes the traditional religious tourism, whose rituals are predictable and institutionally supported as well as the intimate “voyage” in the sense of a reflection of individual religious experience and practice. Somehow paradox, pilgrimages have contributed, one hand, to the reinforcement of traditional churches and the reproduction of their members practices and, on the other, to the expression of individual and privatized religiosity, close to the new conceptual perspectives on spirituality.

Key-words: Modernity, Religious Rituals, Pilgrimages