In olden times an indulgence could be earned by a variety of spiritual tasks, such as saying prayers, fasting, giving alms, or going on a pilgrimage. The Camino Santiago.
In the past medieval people lived in a world where the possibility and probability of sin lurked everywhere, ready to leap out and drag you down.
Even the simplest requirements and joys of daily life were fraught with the dangers of sin.
And sin unpaid for through acts of penance led to Purgatory, a horrible, hellish state after death where one’s soul would be cleansed of the effects of wrongdoing before admittance into heaven.
If one earned enough indulgences, one could take a bypass.
“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, worry about the future, or anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment, wisely and earnestly.”
Now go and have yourself a Buen Camino.