Photo by Pete Muller @pete_k_muller | In the frigid hours before dawn, men from the indigenous Quechua community gather below a series of disappearing glaciers. Like countless generations before them, they make an annual pilgrimage high into the Peruvian Andes to honor the Lord of Qoyllur Riti, a religious figure whose presence is believed to reside in the glaciers. By firelight, the group discussed the ongoing threats to the glaciers, possible solutions to slow their deterioration, and ways to protect the broader sanctuary area from further degradation. The ongoing disappearance of the glaciers cuts deeply into the emotional worlds of believers. I attended Qoyllur Riti as part of my National Geographic Fellowship work on the emotional experiences that accompany environmental transformation. I am thrilled to share this work for the first time this week at the #NatGeoFest in Washington, DC.
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