He is someone who not only has a keen understanding of the significance of the 3100 mile race but has also performed a very practical and vital role there as well for many years. Pradhan is someone keenly suited to finding solutions to the obstacles confronting the runners on many levels, not just the physical. In simple and practical ways his chiropractic treatments helps enable many of the athletes running there to perform at their maximum capacity, day in and day out. He is a chiropractor of extraordinary talent and though he no longer maintains a professional practice he still has been able to serve at nearly all of the multi day races that Sri Chinmoy Marathon team has organized in New York. This is no small feat as he is a resident of Chicago and yet has found time during his busy schedule to visit New York and willingly serve those who are trying to test the very limits of their physical capacity and endurance.
As exceptional as he is as a giver of chiropractic adjustments, Pradhan is also keenly aware of the world beyond the physical. He knows first hand that these exceptional runners sometimes also need encouragement and inspiration on the mental, emotional and spiritual level as well. Physical problems sometimes may be the least of the many obstacles the runners encounter when facing such a momentous task as running 3100 miles. He has great and lengthy experience in dealing not only with the athletes who attempt the impossible but also understanding the great challenges of the spiritual life in general. I had an opportunity during the race to interview him and ask him for some of his thoughts on what these incredible athletic events are all about.
Talk transcribed by Bhadra
Photos by Arpan, Prabhakar, Jowan
Utpal: Why do you think Sri Chinmoy created this world of multi-day races?
Pradhan: I think it was an actual extension of – you know –of his spiritual philosophy. It was something that evolved. He used it as a metaphor for what we’re trying to do inwardly. On our path, there are people who run regularly all the time. And it is understood that the runner accomplishes his goal by placing one foot in front of the other.
And the multi-day races evolved. In the early days, it was just a mile, two miles. I remember in the early days – it was like, the guys ran 3 miles – can you believe it? –it was unbelievable. We’d often have Games Days, or Olympic-style races – these guys would often run outside the field, they’d run out on the street. They’d go three miles, or five miles – then, applying the principles of self-transcendence, eventually it came to be a multi-day race. And the multi-day races, especially the 3100, lend themselves to an inner demand, where you have to go within in order to accomplish the task. So I think that’s why the multi-day races are such an important part of the Sri Chinmoy Centre.