This pilgrimage for nature calls on ‘everyone, everywhere’ to register their own walk, and to have their say on nature and climate, with their words heard on an international platform.
20 members of the general public set out to walk the entire length of the UK this Autumn in order to urge world leaders to recognize that nature is vital for all our survival and happiness and to join us in making nature conservation a key priority in political and economic decisions everywhere and every day.
HELP US TO MAKE A SPLASH AT GLASGOW! We urgently need financial support. We have the funds to cover the costs of our food and accommodation, but to really make some noise at the conference we need support with marketing and from other professionals to ensure we can make the voices we have gathered be heard loud and clear in Glasgow. Help us to pay for social media and marketing support, which is impossible for us to administrate from the road, to hire creative support to help us fine tune the performance we hare creating on the road, and to make the voices visible in a co-created scroll and peoples charter for the land.
Listening to the Land’s pilgrims have already begun an epic eight-week, 500-mile odyssey along the ancient ‘Spine of Albion’ pilgrimage route, stopping to gather the hopes and fears of ordinary citizens they meet along the way.
The immense journey launched on Saturday 4 September and is currently weaving through many of Britain’s key historic centres of cultural, industrial, spiritual and political power, including Winchester, Stratford, Birmingham, Stoke, Manchester, Carlisle and Edinburgh, before arriving in Glasgow for the start of the UN climate conference in November.
The pilgrims have committed to do the full walk, along with 'pollinators' who are experts in the fields of performance, the arts, biodiversity, land workers and health experts, who are coming to inspire conversations. The pilgrimage are also holding meetings in the communities they visit, collecting interviews and quotes, as well as visiting community gardens, organic orchards, eco-churches and other groups to see how they are connecting the public to green spaces, collecting and networking details to help the communities the pilgrims visit connect with and support each other in the future.
The public are also walking with the pilgrims and participating in the creative workshops, talks, and performances that are being delivered during the pilgrimage.
At the end of the walk the pilgrims and organisers will harvest the views and feelings of everyone who takes part in these gatherings, weaving their words into a landmark piece of performance art and co-created 'charter' document to be presented to delegates at COP26 in Glasgow in November, with members of the public’s quotes appearing on bespoke illuminated street signage all over the rooftops of Glasgow during the conference.
We are an independent civil society movement and a co-production between theatre company Kriya Arts and environmental community interest company No Planet B Initiative co-founded by Global Climate Policy Expert Anna Lehmann and theatre producer Jolie Booth.
We love walking, and we called for this walk to build on this moment of opportunity, in the hope that we can inspire many more people to slow down, to connect with nature and articulate their love for the living world, and to feel empowered to speak up for nature by making their voices heard by global leaders at the UN Climate Conference COP26 in Glasgow.
Most of those walking are women and Caucasian; and many are creatives and artists who have paused their 'other lives', some have given up their job to join this journey. This is not a faith-based movement but are open to people of all religions, sexual orientations, gender identities and none. We have no party political affiliations. We are hoping to inspire many more people from all walks of life and identity backgrounds to join us.
Listening to the Land is our hopeful, creative response to this perilous moment.
Find out more on our website www.pilgrimagefornature.com
There are three ways you can get involved:
- Walk with us: join us on route @listeningtothe.land or walk wherever you are and share your walk using #WalkingTheLand2021.
- Send us your hopes, wishes and fears for nature and help shape the Charter for the Land we will present to COP26 delegates
- Most importantly for now, HELP US TO MAKE A SPLASH AT GLASGOW! We urgently need financial support. We have the funds to cover the costs of our food and accommodation, but to really make some noise at the conference we need support with marketing and from other professionals to ensure we deliver a clear and loud message in Glasgow. Help us to pay for social media and marketing support, which is impossible for us to administrate from the road, to hire a director to help us fine tune the performance we hare creating on the road, a designer to develop the charter we are creating made up of quotes from the public and to bring the beautiful Pianodrome into the city of Glasgow to use as a venue.
Four key delivery partners extend the pilgrimage’s reach and impact:
• Letters to the Earth will anchor workshop events along the route with a particular focus on ethnic minority and marginalised communities; in these they will facilitate conversation, deep listening and creativity as people share their messages for a safer, greener and more resilient world
• Arts Collective Still Moving will illuminate the most electrifying sound bites through light installations across the city of Glasgow
• International participatory video organization Insight Share has activated their worldwide network of Indigenous video hubs to create short films on their hopes for nature, and their own sacred walking traditions;
• Local lore-keepers from the Wisdom Keepers network will host ceremonies at seven key sacred sites along the route.
Why a Pilgrimage for nature?
Climate change is both the simplest and most complex of problems. Simple as we all know the answer is to reduce emissions. Complex because we don’t know how to do it, let alone how to convince 7.8 billion other people to do the same. Faced with this conundrum most of us put our faith in technology, put our rubbish in the recycling and get on with our lives. But to place all our confidence in the technologists and futurists is reckless, and naïve. That is why we are taking an ancient solution, pilgrimage, and asking how it might help us to solve this modern problem.
The purpose of a pilgrimage is to slow down. A vast amount of climate change is the result of us all speeding up and consuming too much. Pilgrimage is the exact opposite.
A pilgrimage puts you in direct touch with nature. Walking increases your connection to nature. The greater our connection to nature, the more we want to do to protect it.
A pilgrimage is a journey of transformation. As you walk away from home and your usual comforts, your senses become more alive.
A pilgrimage is a quest. You walk in search of answers: you do not have all the answers as you set out.
We know exactly what is causing climate change and why we are losing nature, and we absolutely know that we can avoid the worst and build a better future for all together. We have 10 years left in which to completely transform human activity for nature to sustain life. Let's look for the solutions together.