July 30: A Changed Man

I remember once hearing my Dad say that he was too old to change.  If there was something in particular troubling him, or whether it was simply life in general vexing him, in the way it exhausts most of us mortals, I cannot remember now.  At the time I thought he was incorrect but I was not going to be the one to tell him so.  For certainly when our troubles mount up around us finding another way of dealing with them often looks just like adding another problem to the already considerable pile.

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Sri Chinmoy’s philosophy has everything to do with change and transformation.  The very word self transcendence cannot ever be removed from the very core meaning of what everyone is trying to accomplish here at the 3100.  Admittedly as someone who is now getting closer to the age when my Father said those words I know how easy it is to resist the great divine forces that really want to lift us up to our own perfection.  The first step surely has to be just to release and let go of the things that do not illumine and inspire us.  Not always easy.

At the 3100 though nothing is ever static.  Now as the race is drawing quickly to its conclusion you can sense a gathering surge of even more energy and movement.  Like a great tide that is carrying all who part of the race to some new destination.  Bodies which over the course of 40 plus days and thousands of miles have found amazing ways of adapting to this physically impossible task.   Not to speak of the mental and emotional burdens as well.  But despite all this you can see clearly how each runner is now being pushed to their absolute limits and then some.  Still they are adapting and changing to deal with the problems even when there seems like there is no solution.

But the Supreme did not bring us into this world to be stopped dead in our tracks.  Change only appears to be painful and impossible if we don’t honestly and soulfully try.

If you sleeplessly aspire,
You will not remain a prisoner
Of the failure-past.

Sri Chinmoy, Twenty-Seven Thousand Aspiration-Plants, Part 130, Agni Press, 1990

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This morning Vasu starts the day just 4 miles behind Atmavir who did not have a good day yesterday.  I ask him what this new situation means to him.  “Many people have inspired me to run faster.  But I think I can do only what I can do.  Yesterday I got a letter from home and they told me that they were inspired to see that I was in the top 3.  They were very happy.  But I think I need to only do my best.  It is only God’s will who will be first and second and who will finish.”

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Some changes are happening at one of the Enterprises on Parsons Blvd for those who know it.  The Smile of the Beyond is being renovated.

smile

A changed man
Is a changed world.

A changed world
Is a changed God.

A changed God
Is a changed Dream.

A changed Dream
Is a changed Silence.

Sri Chinmoy, The Dance Of Life, Part 13, Agni Press, 1973

Photo by Bhashwar 1977

Photo by Bhashwar 1977

It is going to be a good day with low humidity.

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Sarvagata looking for solutions to get going

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Rupantar makes some announcements about the finish next Tuesday, just 8 days more

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Ashprihanal had a good day yesterday.

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Atmavir trying to get a few things sorted out.

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Sarah had her best day yesterday since ………30 days ago.

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Start

start

The board

board

Sarah had an extraordinarily good day she ran 105 laps or 57 miles.

sarah-silouhete

She starts the day having completed 2212 miles.  How she uses the next 8 days will be not an easy challenge for her.

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The course is about as beautiful as it can possible be this morning

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Everything is touched with beauty.

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Ananda-Lahari did 84 laps yesterday but he would love to have more days in front of him not less.

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Baladev wrote a poem yesterday.

baladev-silouhete

Who am I?  Peace.

Who am I? I am a light.

Who am I? I am joy.

Who am I? I am happiness.

Who am I? I am faith.

Who am I? I am forgiveness.

Who am I? I am harmony.

Who am I?  I am love.

Who am I? I am a light blue bird flying in the infinite sky forever……(Baladev)

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I ask him where his poems come from.  “Everything exists.  I only say this.”

As each day passes now he feels that each new day simply becomes better and more fulfilling.  “It is a very nice feeling.  Because when you feel this, it is like problems don’t exist.  Because everything feels like you are part and parcel of a river going on its way.  Nobody can stop this river because this river is very strong.  It is a very natural feeling.  I think everyone has this feeling sometimes.  I hope so.”

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Sopan had a great day yesterday

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He did 101 laps.  He has 2511 miles but sees that his goal of 3000 miles will probably be out of reach

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A short play

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“I have this huge mental blister it really hurts me.” Sopan

“I know you have pushed really hard for the 3100 and all those painful blisters.  But when you finish people sing your name song, and there is this big party with cake.

But remember we value inner progress much more than outer success.  But if your mental blister is the problem my hand is the answer.”  Ashprihanal

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Nidhruvi despite having a fun day yesterday completed her necessary miles.  She did 109 laps or 59 miles

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She starts the day with 459 miles to go.  Which means she just has to do 57 miles a day now to finish in time.

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Technically it is announced that when she finishes next Tuesday so will the race as well.

nidhruvi-camp

Hopefully she will continue to soar the rest of the way.

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And stay hydrated.

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Yuri seems to have back all his strength.  He did 112 laps yesterday.

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He has finished 2658 miles.

yuri-wide

He should finish on Tuesday next week

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Kodanda plays upon his flute

kodanda

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Surasa is simply splendid again today.  She did 111 laps.

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She has time for friends

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She starts the day with 2700 miles on the board.

surasa

Sarvagata did 92 laps yesterday

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He starts the day with 2724 miles on the board.

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Pranjal had a good day with 114 laps.

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He has a way of standing out in traffic.

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Well not quite this big

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A little more like this

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He was given this vase by friends of the race.  He is very happy with it.

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The camp

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One of the faces we don’t often see is Bipin who is here talking to Ashprihanal

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Ashprihanal had his best day in a long time.  He did 113 laps.

ashprihanal

Ashprihanal is just 300 miles from the finish line.

ashprihanal2

 

ATmavir has had an exceptional race on this his 7th year.

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He is 120 miles ahead of his previous best but he ran 92 laps yesterday.  This morning he is having problems and Vasu passes him for now.

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But Vasu is 180 miles ahead of last year and ran 118 laps.

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Vasu comes with some awesome strength this year.

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He has also a very strong and willing helper in Nicolay.

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For  a moment the board shows the simple truth, that Atmavir and Vasu are briefly equal.  Then Vasu continues.

vasu-board

His most important strength though are in these words.

“If we offer it to Guru, he can run in and through us……and make miracles.”

vasu-silouhete

Prayer of the day

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Recited by Vasu in English and Russian

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Some familiar faces from a different angle

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Enthusiasm Awakeners

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Change! Change!
If not, you will suffer.

Change! Change!
You will prosper.

Brave, brave the old!
If not, you will die.

Brave, brave the new!
You will fly.

Sri Chinmoy, The Dance Of Life, Part 12, Agni Press, 1973

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5 Comments to “July 30: A Changed Man”

  1. Francesco says:

    Thank you Utpal,
    can you say to Vasu:
    that my heart is running with him.

  2. Laura says:

    Some people say there is no God. But I say, it is not possible to excel at all these miles without something higher than an ego. I propose it is a soul and a Greatness Which We All Are. Thanks everyone.

  3. Ken says:

    Thank you Utpal! I am greatly inspired by everyone, but perhaps most of all by the four that aren’t going to complete the 3100, but who have the strength of character to continue giving their utmost every day without a tangible goal, with just the inner beauty of reaching their capabilities each day.

  4. Brahmata says:

    I had the good fortune of spending almost a week in New York at the race, it was such a blessing and an inspiration to see these running warriors everyday! I was struck by the little community of race directors, helpers, cooks, singers, photographers and friends and how harmoniously and self-givingly they all functioned together in service of the 12 heroes.

    It was actually the Perfection Journey blog that made me want to be at the race in person. These beautifully written daily updates really made me feel connected to the race and the runners. Now that I’m back at home, I rely on this blog and the 3100 mile race galleries to have oneness with the race. It is really invaluable!

    Seeing a tiny glimpse of what the 3100 mile runners go through has been a source of strength in my own little world. When I am challenged by life, I think of them and feel that not only can I brave the problem but actually do so with a cheerful and surrendered attitude. This is just one of the ways they have inspired me.

    Thank you for this fantastic blog and the stunning pictures Utpal!

    Please tell Baladev that the following is Sri Chinmoy’s translation of the song he likes so much:

    Sakaler prane tomare heriya basiya tomare bhalo
    Haye jete chai mane prane dehe rupantarita alo

    Seeing Your Life in every heart
    And loving You in every aspiring heart,
    I wish to become totally one —
    Body, mind and vital —
    Singing the song of transformation-light.

    (from http://www.srichinmoysongs.org)

    Gratitude!

  5. Brahmata says:

    I had the good fortune of spending almost a week in New York at the race, it was such a blessing and an inspiration to see these running warriors everyday! I was struck by the little community of race directors, helpers, cooks, singers, photographers and friends and how harmoniously and self-givingly they all functioned together in service of the 12 heroes.

    It was actually the Perfection Journey blog that made me want to be at the race in person. These beautifully written daily updates really made me feel connected to the race and the runners. Now that I’m back at home, I rely on this blog and the 3100 mile race galleries to have oneness with the race. It is really invaluable!

    Seeing a tiny glimpse of what the 3100 mile runners go through has been a source of strength in my own little world. When I am challenged by life, I think of them and feel that not only can I brave the problem but actually do so with a cheerful and surrendered attitude. This is just one of the ways they have inspired me. It is unimaginable how much stress these runners must be under, yet everyday they were exuding so many divine qualities. In the midst of everything they were maintaining peace, poise, equanimity and humour. Wow!

    Thank you for this fantastic blog and the stunning pictures Utpal!

    Please tell Baladev that the following is Sri Chinmoy’s translation of the song he likes so much:

    Sakaler prane tomare heriya basiya tomare bhalo
    Haye jete chai mane prane dehe rupantarita alo

    Seeing Your Life in every heart
    And loving You in every aspiring heart,
    I wish to become totally one —
    Body, mind and vital —
    Singing the song of transformation-light.

    (from http://www.srichinmoysongs.org)

    Gratitude!

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