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Pilgrimage and Faith

Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam

July 1–October 24, 2011

For millennia people of all faiths have embarked on the practice of pilgrimage, journeying to a sacred place or shrine of special religious significance, while proceeding at the same time on an inner, spiritual journey. Objects associated with pilgrimage—whether works of high artistic skill or those intended for everyday use—often reveal deep human needs that transcend particular faiths.
Pilgrimage and Faith explores these important spiritual journeys in three of the world’s largest religious traditions: Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam. While reflecting on the shared goals of personal development and communal solidarity evident in each tradition, the exhibition also highlights their particular ritual practices and artistic expressions.
The exhibition features diverse examples of objects from each faith, including a Chinese Buddhist pilgrimage map, a Tibetan Buddhist hand prayer wheel, a twelfth-century Christian reliquary casket, Muslim clay prayer tablets.

Notable Related Public Programming

The Road That Teaches
A conversation series which explored the nature of faith and pilgrimage between two people from different walks of life, differing spiritual experiences. Speakers included: Gloria Steinem, Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo, Andrew Cohen, Howard Bloom, and many more.

Silent Echoes
A sound installation by Bill Fontana
An immersive meditation experience where guests listened to the sound of five Kyoto temples bells when they are not being rung.

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