I think it has something to do with history and what people have done, felt, believed, practiced, experienced and worshipped over long—and intense— periods of time.
By that standard, the Cruz de Ferro or cross of iron on the Camino qualifies. Some believe it was the site of a shrine to Hermès (Mercury for Romans’) in ancient times.
It is said that the cross was first erected in the 11th century. Over time the custom has been for pilgrims to place or throw a stone from home or throw one over one’s shoulders there. A decent size mound has grown over time.
People also place prayers, pictures, sacred objects and such there. As I mentioned in a Facebook post, I put a rock from West Virginia there along with a medallionof the Virgin given to me by a waiter from Ecuador.
Not that I’m a card carrying pagan or anything, but Hermès has always been a big one for me, especially when it comes to travel, borders, boundaries and interpretation.
Obviously I’m down with Jesus too. This trip I try to honor the divine in whatever form.