This film documents a group of Tibetans who, over the course of a year, make an arduous 2,000km pilgrimage to Lhasa, not by means of any transportation, but by prostrating themselves over and over again the entire length of the journey, an act which is believed to purify their bodies and minds. The trek begins in a small Tibetan village where a man, Nyima, dreams of making a pilgrimage to Mount Kang Rinpoche, one of the most revered holy peaks in the Kailash Range. When he decides to take the journey with his family, he is joined by other villagers, from a little girl to an old man. Despite the many hardships they face, the group eleven in all determinedly press on. Paths of the Soul takes a candid approach to depicting the journey, eschewing any dramatic contrivances. In such a way, Zhang depicts these Tibetans’ pious acts not as something grandiose, but as something that is illustrative of everyday life. Nevertheless, a sense of nobleness permeates through the beautiful imagery, and by capturing this with his camera, Zhang becomes imbued with some of that nobility himself.
Helichenguang International Culture Media (Beijing) Co., Ltd./LETV pictures (TIANJIN) Co.,Ltd./Le Shi Internat Information & Technology Corp. Beijing/KunRunGaoHong Investment Co., LTD.