June 25: Keep Trying

“I had a really good experience of flowing.”  It has been pretty obvious for the past few days that Sarvagata is having an extraordinarily good start to his 3100 mile adventure.  Yesterday he ran 130 laps which was the most of any of the other runners.  But it is not just the numbers that tell the story, it is also his very presence.  He seems to exude a deep sense of calmness and tranquility.

It is not without effort of course but it is almost as though the big numbers are not accumulating with struggle but with surrender.  That something else is pushing him along and he is just a passenger.

It was on Wednesday that his running, he says, became almost effortless.  For a time all parts of his being seemed to exist in complete harmony.  He felt quite clearly that this experience had come directly from Sri Chinmoy.  “You could call it cosmic consciousness, or whatever.   I had that experience and nearly burst into tears.  It was hard to breathe because it was so delightful.”

The power of that most significant inspiration he continues to try and maintain, though the exact experience has not repeated itself.  He describes how much he yearned for it to return.  “I am waiting and waiting, and running and running.” (Laughter)

“I don’t feel like I am running faster, but somehow it happens that it is a little bit faster than usual.  So I think in this case expectation adds up the miles.”  Yesterday he says, when he ran 71 miles, “I had an experience not so bright, but still really outstanding, for me. I was really happy yesterday, and the day before yesterday, and the day before yesterday.”

When I suggest that today seems to be going pretty smoothly, he says, “yeah, I am a little ahead of my morning schedule.  Usually I am waking up the first 10 laps.”

One can always hope that bliss and joy be part of every moment here.  The life of a 3100 mile runner though is filled however with many rich experiences.  Learning and becoming are established only by conquering challenge and adversity.  Without obstacles, without the goal of perfection enticing us to go on, than self transcendence itself could not even exist.

Perhaps the script has already been written for each who runs here.  The outcome known but certainly yet to be revealed.  Two days ago Sarvagata was granted a most significant and rewarding stroll through the garden of his own inner beauty.  Tomorrow, it may not be so easy, but at least he can always remember the sweet fragrance he felt there for a time.  Tomorrow, or on other countless tomorrows to come, at least maintain a prayerful hope, to find his way once again back along that same sun-bright path of his heart’s eternal journey.

Ironically on almost the same day that Sarvagata was having a great experience Purna Samarpan has been suffering from a cold.  Yesterday he completed just 36 miles and the day before that only 17.  He is currently taking antibiotics and is resting often.  Hoping to somehow find the pecarious balance between running and healing.

This morning he and Vajra are joking.  Vajra says, “We were discussing his dreams for moving up to first place, and knocking out Ashprihanal.  I feel that deep within him there is a reservoir of inexhaustible energy.  He just has to tap into it.”

I ask what he might be tapping into now?   “What energy line is preventing him from going to the source.  We have to clear it, and it comes in the form of a cold, or something like that.  We’ll get that out of the way. ”

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It should as well be pointed out that Surasa is now 100 miles ahead of last year.  Her daily mileage has been more consistent than any other runner.

Start

Day 14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It is pretty much good now.”  2 days ago Ashprihanal had the unusual experience of only running 65 miles.  Today a lingering raspyness can be heard in his voice but he shows no signs of any weakness.  He did after all run 70 miles yesterday. “It bothered me but my legs were fine.  Who knows these things.”

Yesterday he and Pradeep performed a short play for the girl’s singing group who come out each morning.  “We have very short skits because we don’t have time to stop.  Just for a couple of seconds.  So we don’t interfere with the running in itself.”

“Grahak used to be the best one.  He has sent some very nice ‘blonde’ jokes.”

The hot weather has yet to appear this summer and in fact the skies have been often grey and even a little on the cool side.  “For me it helps a lot.”  He had real problems with the record heat last summer. “I was really suffering.”

Yesterday he also took a tumble for the first time in years.  It is a rare occurrence for him and other than a scrape on his hand he appears quite fine and not shaken up at all.  He jokes that he did it on the exact day that many Finnish people celebrate, to some access he adds, the summer solstice.

Yesterday he says that he didn’t even need to put on sun block and was even cold for a while.

We are approaching the counting table in which Niharika is sitting.  She will return to Finland this afternoon.

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The race had a special visitor here today. One who knows the race, and all it has to offer, perhaps better than anyone else.  Suprabha has after all run the race 13 times.  She arrived this morning just as Surasa completed her 800th mile.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pranjal and Stutisheel joke about taking a coffee break.
Which in fact involved  neither of them drinking coffee or taking a break.

 

Shamita does a little of natures work for the flowers around the course.

 

 

 

Poem of the day.

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I was able to come back 12 hours later and the day is now bright but not too hot.

 

 

Ashrita and Bipin are practicing a grape catching record near by.

 

 

Vishvarutpani performs some necessary repairs to one of Surasa’s shoes.

 

 

While Anuvega performs some repairs on Sarvagata.

 

 

 

 

Enthusiasm Awakeners

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Keep trying!
It so often happens
That the last key opens the door.
Likewise, it is your last prayer
That may grant you salvation,
And your last meditation
That may grant you realisation.

 

Sri Chinmoy, Ten Thousand Flower-Flames, Part 17, Agni Press, 1981.

2 Comments to “June 25: Keep Trying”

  1. Hridayinee Williams says:

    How delightful to share in the runners’ journey through these insightful and comprehensive journal entries – ever new and fresh. I admire how you come up with new and interesting viewpoints to write about year after year Utpal! Great job and Thank you. Everyone in New Zealand sends their love and support to all the hero-warrier Runners-Supreme. Love and joy, Hridayinee

  2. Laura says:

    Love your blog uptal

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