Latest news and developments

Hunting Lodge Mookerheide Natuurmonumenten

From every donation for our starter packs, we set aside €1 for nature and the landscape along the route. At the end of December, we helped Natuurmonumenten (+-Dutch national trust) with €240 for the beautiful Hunting Lodge Mookerheide, right on our pilgrimage trail.

Hunting lodge Mookerheide Natuurmonumenten
Hunting lodge Mookerheide on the Walk of Wisdom

Hunting lodge Mookerheide: romance and SS

The Hunting Lodge appeals to our imagination. It was allegedly built to impress a sweetheart – in vain. In World War II it was the headquarters of the feared SS. But it is also the place where Catholic sisters have taken care of displaced girls. A woman who lived there as a girl once told us how loving she had experienced the help of the sisters.

Pilgrims of the Walk of Wisdom have been walking past the Hunting Lodge for years. While the lodge was slowly fading at first, it is now clearly regaining allure. During the restoration, no fewer than 16,000 beautiful mosaic tiles were revealed, which were previously hidden under a layer of stucco. We have now adopted sixteen of those tiles.

Would you also like to adopt a tile for €15? We raffle a free tour of Natuurmonumenten, among who does and sends us an email or puts a reply on Facebook. The Hunting Lodge is easy to reach: it is within walking distance of Mook-Molenhoek station. The date of the tour will be announced (some time after restauration). Help Natuurmonumenten and

Nynke Laverman album Plant

We are proud and happy to announce that singer songwriter Nynke Laverman is going on a Walk of Wisdom pilgrimage in spring. We invited her to walk to make a contribution to our new book On the road to Wisdom and she happily accepted the offer.

Nynke Laverman was one of the first we approached for our new book project. Her theater tour Plant beams with spirit for the planet, both wise and sad and proud and loving. A full evocation of feelings about living in the Anthropocene. Her tour Plant is currently postponed because of Corona but will be continued next year. Hear and see!

Our favorite song from Nynke Laverman

Walk of Wisdom good bye ceremony St Nicolaaskapel
Opening Walk of Wisdom by Ger Loeffen copyright

Photo: Ger Loeffen)
The Walk of Wisdom is inspired by a sense of connection with the planet. As a symbol of that connection, we are working on a pilgrimagetrail in all countries of the world. It’s quite a plan!

Airy-fairy? We believe that a sense of interconnectedness is needed to solve the major problems of our time. With almost 8 billion people, no one can lock themselves up in their own region. Everyone is confronted with large-scale climate change, nature destruction, migration and inequality. It is about time we land, says the French philosopher Latour. To no longer see the earth as a background for our actions, but as a base. A habitat.

We like to help with that landing. With a new pilgrimage tradition where connection with the world is central. Feet on the ground and forward.

10.000 times on track for wisdom

Short manual for the modern pilgrim
By Petra van Bloemendaal

Most funds did not believe in our “utopian plan.” We opened our first Walk of Wisdom in 2015 anyway: a pioneer trail of 136 kilometers around Nijmegen. That route received a major regional prize, a series on national television and last August the 10,000th registration as pilgrim. Hooray!

The road ahead? The success emboldens us to internationalize the pioneer trail. It is the most direct way to realize our global ambitions. If international pilgrims become as enthusiastic as the Dutch, there are bound to be a few who ‘see’ a Walk of Wisdom in their own country, then to begin one. Utopian – no – organic thinking.

We also begin work on our second pilgrim book of hours: On the Road to Wisdom. The book will have four chapters – the pilgrim tides – each of which to be released separately as e-book and then together on paper. The first pilgrim tide will appear in June 2022. Theme: the mystery of inspiration. We’ll invite inspiring personalities to walk the pioneer trail to write a contribution. Non celebrities are also included and art and poetry will ‘enlighten’ the texts, just like in our first book Seasons of Life (sold out).

How can you help

We have sufficient resources until June 2022 to work on the internationalization of our pioneer trail and the first chapter of On the Road to Wisdom. For the way after that we need help.

Guard near our first book
The unique edition of our first pilgrim’s tide book Seasons of Life. It contains all the original artworks and there is only one. Every first Saturday after sunrise we read a story from it: welcome! See departure ceremony de pelgrimslauden.

Non financial ways to help:

silent walk Walk of Wisdom
Photo: Marja Hakkoer
  • nominate an inspiring personality that we invite to walk the route and write a for the book.
  • do you live on the route? We need sleeping and dining addresses for our guests.
  • Social media skills? We need your help.
  • English language skills? We need help with translating and editing.

How to materialise an idea: 

  • Donate €10 or more. You will receive the first pilgrim tide as e-book in June 2022 and thus finance the second. Do: link.
  • Donate €50 or more and you will become a veritable angel as far as we are concerned. In addition to the first pilgrim tide (e-book), earthly advantages are a special invitation to the presentation. Do: link.
  • Donate €333 for 3 years as a super sponsor. You get a steel statue of Pilgrim, designed by Huub and Adelheid Kortekaas. These artists are a great source of inspiration for the Walk of Wisdom and designed the symbol as our contemporary guardian angel. Do: link.

Art lover or company?

  • Sponsor the fee of an inspiring guest pilgrim. A way to connect with whom inspires you and an original way for companies to show values ​​and mission. Mail: [email protected]
  • Own a piece of cultural heritage and buy a miniature from our first pilgrimage book Seasons of Life. Limited edition. The proceeds will be divided by Intermedi-Art between the artist and the Walk of Wisdom foundation.
  • Participate in the auction of the unique edition of this first pilgrimage book with all the original artworks. The publication is now in the Stevenskerk (see photo, above, starting price €15,000). The Medieval Books of Hours on which this book is inspired are now worth millions of euros.

We have a dream of a worldwide network of national pilgrimage trails connected together by shared values and some basic rites and symbols. A modern pilgrimage independent of a religion. We have written a charter to state our case:

Read as online flipbook:

Charter – Walk of Wisdom pilgrimage

The beginning success of a new pilgrimage tradition

In 2015 we opened a pioneer trail of 136 kilometres around Nijmegen in the Netherlands. This pioneer trail is a beginning success with enthusiastic feedback from +- 6.500 pilgrims since the opening in mid 2015.

We now hope to inspire people abroad to grow a Walk of Wisdom pilgrimage in their own country based on this charter. Organizations that qualify receive a sublicense of our pilgrimage symbol designed by Huub and Adelheid Kortekaas on a non commercial basis.

Find out more in our charter: Download pdf

Pilgrim lace Walk of Wisdom

We are making our starter kit for the pilgrimage more sustainable. Developer Manja Bente found an alternative for the leather we use now and looks as nice.

Manja abhors the chemicals that are used with making leather and the bad working conditions for labourers. Being a vegan herself was an extra motivation. Quite some years passed when she originally designed the lace, fond of the natural look of leather and its seasoning in time…

Vrienden worden?

Manja didn’t like fake leather, because it is, well, fake, and the production is very pollutant. Her daughter suggested to use corque and after several months of research and experiment corque it will be.

Pilgrim's lace Walk of wisdom
Pilgrim’s lace Walk of wisdom

  1. We ordered our first 1001 meter of corque laces and our volunteers will start to work diligently to turn them into pilgrim laces (gratitude for that!). We import the corque laces from Portugal via the Dutch small company called Corque.nl who also sells other products made from corque.

Next step: a sustainable alternative for our steel pin of our symbool Pelgrim . Tot be continued!

Manja

Our volunteer starter kit team merrily packed our 5.000th starter kit. Pilgrims come from all over the Netherlands and increasingly Flanders. We did not yet succeed in attracting pilgrims further away, apart from our native Englishman and signposter Stuart, who translated the routeguide, and our two American pilgrims who tested the translation (and approved it).

Who wants to help reaching out further away?

Walk of Wisdom Ooijpolder, Yolanda van Diepen
Walk of Wisdom Ooijpolder, Yolanda van Diepen
Walk of Wisdom Ooijpolder, Yolanda van Diepen

On Saturday 28 September we will start with the third “Walk of Wisdom in a year around”: a series of guided silent walks in which we walk the Walk of Wisdom in ten stages in a year time. An average stage is between 12 and 16 kilometers. We walk in silence, and during the breaks there is room for exchange.

 

The dates are already known, always on the fourth Saturday of the month (see below). The guidance is always in different hands. The first walk goes from Nijmegen to Beek and is approximately 14 kilometers. The guidance is in the hands of Manja Bente, co-developer of the Walk of Wisdom, with Anja van Wegen, volunteer.

Note: The guidance is in Dutch, but with pleasure we do our best to translate where possible.

The start is at the special starting point: the face of Nijmegen – the Stevenskerk. This is also the end point of the entire series and the pilgrim route itself. So in the end you don’t get a step further, but that’s not the point of a pilgrimage anyway.

On Saturday 28 September we will start with the third “Walk of Wisdom in a year around”: a series of guided silent walks in which we walk the Walk of Wisdom in ten stages in a year time. An average stage is between 12 and 16 kilometers. We walk in silence, and during the breaks there is room for exchange.

The dates are already known, always on the fourth Saturday of the month (see below). The guidance is always in different hands. The first walk goes from Nijmegen to Beek and is approximately 14 kilometers. The guidance is in the hands of Manja Bente, co-developer of the Walk of Wisdom, with Anja van Wegen, volunteer.

Note: The guidance is in Dutch, but with pleasure we do our best to translate where possible.
The start is at the special starting point: the face of Nijmegen – the Stevenskerk. This is also the end point of the entire series and the pilgrim route itself. So in the end you don’t get a step further, but that’s not the point of a pilgrimage anyway.

How do you register?
You can sign up for a single walk or for the entire series. If you sign up for the entire series, you can order a starter package with discount, so that you are also registered as a pilgrim. In that case you will receive the route guide, pilgrim lace and pin with our symbol (more).
All options in a row:
Participation in a separate guided walk (€ 10).
Participation in the entire series (€ 50).
Participation in the entire series plus registration as a pilgrim with start package with our pin, pilgrim lace and route guide (€ 65 + € 3.95 postage).
Free participation for volunteers from the Walk of Wisdom or sponsors who donated more than € 50 this year.
There is room for a maximum of 25 participants! Register: link

Landscape contribution
Part of the inlay goes to the landscape on the route, probably to flower seeds for flowering verges or a pedestrian bench.

The first stage
On Saturday 28 September we will walk the first stage: from the Stevenskerk in Nijmegen to Beek. The walk is about 14 kilometers and goes into nature (the Ooijpolder) from the center of Nijmegen towards the moraine. There we end via the Elyzeese Velden into the village of Beek and we take the bus back to Nijmegen at around 4 pm / 4.30 pm (+ – 20 minutes).

Collecting: at 10.30 am in the Stevenskerk at the coffee table for coffee and tea. You don’t have to pay an entrance fee at the desk if you say you are coming for the Walk of Wisdom.

Along the way we pause at least twice, among other things to drink coffee at Oortjeshekken. Take your own bread and maybe something tasty to share if you like!

Walk of Wisdom door Jan Alers

  • Elyzeese Velden, Jan Alers

All data in a row

(1) Nijmegen – Beek, Saturday the 28th of September (2) Beek – Kranenburg, Saturday thh 26th of October (3) Kranenburg – Plasmolen, Saturday the 23rd of November (4) Plasmolen – Malden, Saturday the 25th of January (5) Malden – Nederasselt, Saturday the 22th of  Februari (6) Nederasselt – Ravenstein, Saturday the 28th of March (7) Ravenstein – Wijchen, Saturday the 25th of April (8) Wijchen – Afferden, Saturday the the 23rd of May (9) Afferden – Beuningen, Saturday the 27th of June (10) Beuningen – Nijmegen,  Saturday the 26th of September

Sign in: link (The guidance is in Dutch, but with pleasure we do our best to translate where possible.)

Vereniging Nederlands Cultuurlandschap
Vereniging Nederlands Cultuurlandschap
Nederlands cultuurlandschap

Landscape contribution: thanks to all the pilgrims who recently registered, we have just transferred with much pleasure € 150 to ‘Vereniging Nederlands Cultuurlandschap (the Dutch Cultural Landscape Association). Specially for their: “Delta Plan for the Landscape”.

In this delta plan, 200,000 kilometers of Dutch fields, grass and ditch edges are designated as a green zone. Think of hedges and flowery strips that are good for insects and birds. Farmers get paid to manage the zone and everyone can enjoy the beauty through new walking and cycling paths. There is a model area of the plan in the Ooijpolder – the Walk of Wisdom walks past it (route maps 3 and 4).

Pollard willows Ooijpolder, model area Delta Plan for the Landscape

The clever thing about the plan is that nature lovers and farmers are not opposed to each other. They work together. The plan puts 12 billion euros into a fund once. The farmers are paid out of the annual revenue of 600 million euros. Thanks to this construction the plan is independent of uncertain subsidies “into eternity”.

FIVE times around the world

In an extensive analysis in ‘Vrij Nederland’, creator Jaap Dirkmaat states that we can restore the cultural landscape of the Netherlands with 80% of its biodiversity: the diversity of plants and animals that the Netherlands has to offer. It would create a green ribbon that goes around the earth five times. A blessing in a time of massive extinction of species due to the disappearance of their habitats and the use of poison. In combination with organic farmers without poison, the profit is even greater.

Top sport

“We must turn biodiversity into a top sport,” concludes Jaap Dirkmaat. That sounds good. Because even in top sport the impossible dream is the basis. Real Olympians cycle against the same mountain every day if necessary. And ultimately realize their dream – to the satisfaction of an entire country.

The Dutch article in Vrij Nederland

More about the contagiously ambitious “Delta Plan for the Dutch Landscape” on the website of ‘Nederlands Cultuurlandschap’ (it is in Dutch): link.

Landscape contribution Walk of Wisdom

We set aside at least € 1 of the registration fee for each pilgrim to pay for nature and landscape projects along the route. This year we hope to welcome around 1,500 new pilgrims. We are on schedule. More about registering: link

Pictures by Nederlands Cultuurlandschap

Our start and end point the Stevenskerk will start a pilot with an entrance fee of €2 from the 1st of August. Pilgrims who start or finish their journey can enter for free. Note: this new situation will not be clear to all volunteers right away, but as a pilgrim you can refer to the information folder that is behind their counter.

Why an entrance fee?
The Stevenskerk is facing major expenses on maintenance and sustainability. She receives a subsidy of 5.5 million euros from the government for this, providing that the church itself supplements the amount with 2.3 million euros. The foundation is given 10 years to do this. In order not to become too dependent on subsidy providers, the foundation wants to investigate with this pilot of asking entrance fee whether it can achieve a higher personal contribution for the planned projects.

After the pilot ends (1st of December), an evaluation will take place. Therefore it is not yet possible to say whether the entrance fee will become a permanent measure. The hope is that most visitors are willing to contribute to the preservation of the beautiful monument from 1273 with their visit.

As Walk of Wisdom, we pay for the minor maintenance of the church one day a year via the Steveniers contribution of € 365. As a thank you to the hospitality of the church for WoW pilgrims we have transferred €300 extra this week. If you can miss something when you walk past the donation column: all bits help!!

Stevenskerk, by Bart Kouwenberg