The exhibit reflects a diversity of religious and spiritual pilgrimage through environments created with photography from National Geographic. Families will be able to observe, discuss and begin to understand some of the beliefs and sacred journeys made by people around the world.
The recreated places, spaces, and events will invite visitors to learn more about the history and beliefs that support spiritual practices taking place at home and within local congregations. Featured re-creations include:
• Dome of the Rock mosque, site of Muhammad’s ascent to heaven in Jerusalem.
• The Church of the Holy Sepulchre, site of Jesus’ crucifixion in Jerusalem.
• Jewish devotional objects taken into space by former astronaut David Wolf.
• The Grand Mosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, to which all Muslims are expected to make a pilgrimage or Hajj once in their lifetimes
• Tepeyac Hill and the Roman Catholic Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City,.
• Allahabad and Sangam at the confluence of three rivers sacred to Hindus at the Ganges River in India, site of some of the largest gatherings of humans.
• Caves in the bluffs along the Dead Sea in Qumran, Israel, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered.
“Children and families will have the opportunity to learn about pilgrimages, festivals and important objects connected to a variety of sacred sites in the world,” said museum CEO and President Jeffrey H. Patchen.
“These smaller, intimate displays will focus on stories of personal experiences and will be an excellent stepping off point for families to discuss their own religious paths.”
National Geographic has been documenting the world and its many cultures for more than 125 years, said Kathryn Keane, the organization’s vice president of exhibitions. “This exhibition is another incredible journey for families to some of the world’s most sacred and historic places.”