July 7: Doing The Same Miracles

“It is one of my favorite places to run.” As Suprabha says this, the dawn is greeting us with an incredible gentle glow.  The 12 runners have already just set off and she has obliged me this morning to do a lap of the course with me.  Of course she doesn’t get to New York that often as she lives in the DC area.  So one can naturally assume that she doesn’t get to run here that often.  At least not now.

But it wasn’t that many years ago in which this was not just her favorite place to run but in many ways the very epicenter of her life’s journey.  13 summers she spent circling this block and when I dare to even comprehend just how many laps and miles she ran here my mind shuts down.  Latter using a small calculator, it spat out a gigantic trail of numbers.  As I look at her lightly jogging along now, it all just seemed so unbelievable.  How was it possible that this petite little woman could have run so many miles here. (40,300)

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“Well mostly I just feel something here.  Of course if I zoom in I can pick out special moments, but it is just really nice to be here.  It is nice to spend a little time with the runners.  It just brings it all back.  Mainly I just feel grateful to be part of the race.  Not just all those times but that I can still come back and feel part of it.”

Suprabha-copyShe feels the presence of Sri Chinmoy she says just as much now as before.  “Doing the same miracles.  That is one of the most beautiful things about the race is that you can always feel that Sri Chinmoy is here.”

“I don’t think anyone will ever fully understand the 3100 mile race.  Everybody I think feels something, and feels how vast and beautiful it is.  Because it really offers something to everybody.  So many people can be part of it, and be touched by it.

She then relates a story about the great Ted Corbitt when one summer he visited the race while Suprabha was running it.  She said that when Sri Chinmoy learned that Ted was visiting with the runners he immediately came over to meet with him.

According to Suprabha he apparently asked Ted, who was by now quite elderly, why he hadn’t participated in the 6 and 10 day race that had taken place earlier in the Spring. Ted told Sri Chinmoy that at this point in his life he was having difficulty even walking little alone entering multi day races.

Sri Chinmoy told him.  This is not something you are doing for yourself.  This is something you are doing for the world.

“I think it is really true.  Maybe we don’t even know what the race is doing.  That is what I feel, but it has to be reaching very far.  It is very expansive.  I think we are really lucky to have the race.”

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In the world of
Unbelief and disbelief,
Our faith in God itself
Is the miracle of miracles.

Sri Chinmoy, Seventy-Seven Thousand Service-Trees, Part 8, Agni Press, 1998

The water glasses are all full as it is once again going to be a very hot day.

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The runners arrive and the little touches to their tables await them

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Start

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Surasa runs so consistently.

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Surasa tells me that the only time she was in a race was many years ago when she did the 1,300 mile race.  “At that time I was helping Shamita.  I was just a helper.  It was my first time at such a race.”

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When asked if she thought she could ever do something like that.  “No.  I never thought.  I was so happy and I was sure that I would come back again and help.  But many people said to me.  When are your going to run?   I said no, no, no.  I am just a helper.  I cannot do that.”

But the next year instead of helping she ended up running.  “Because my runner could not run.”

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When asked what she sees in Suprabha.  “I see divinity in her when she is running.  She is just so dedicated and is trying to be a good instrument.  for me she is always so divine.”

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Ashprihanal ran the most miles yesterday.  He is using a bamboo hat to try and keep cool

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Staying cool is a priority for all the runners

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Nidhruvi ran 110 laps yesterday just the same

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Pranjal casts a long shadow

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“It is always hard to be really focused.  You have to be when you are running in this kind of weather.  You have to have very high determination, then to keep it throughout the race is really really hard.”

“The determination cannot come from the mind, because the mind gets tired after some time.  It has to come from a deeper source.  It is only then that you can use it in this kind of race.  Every day here is really really hard.”

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“In the beginning I have to accept that this is the thing that I am going to do, until the end of my life.  When you feel you have no choice it makes it much easier.  So we know we have to run and there is no other option.  It doesn’t matter that I am tired or that I have an injury.”

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Pranjal sweats so much that his shirt acts like a sponge

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Atmavir had a much better day yesterday despite the heat.  He did 114 laps.  He received some tips that seemed to work.

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At least in the morning it a little cooler

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“Today most of the day I had to deal with a blister that has been giving me trouble the last 5-6 days that is why I have been running 60.9 miles one day and 50+ the next. Small at first sight insignificant blister but placed at the wrong spot under the arch of my left foot where the skin is very tender and gentle no matter how you fix it hurts a lot.”  Sopan did 92 laps yesterday but says that he has been receiving many inspiring messages.

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Sopan getting counted

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Sarah had 84 laps yesterday

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Yuri is also using a bamboo hat now in the hottest part of the day.  He got sunburned yesterday and so had an even harder time staying cool

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He had his lowest mileage of the race yesterday, 100 laps.

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Vasu did 115 yesterday

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Nikolay so often is at Vasu’s side.

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Nilpushpi played her piano for the runners in the morning.

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Ananda-Lahari did 99 laps yesterday

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Baladev did better than the last few days with 102 laps

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Even standing the heat is unbearable.

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Sarvagata came back to earth just a little with a 118 lap day.  There is no question that he will get the big numbers once again.

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Suprabha comes back later in the morning to sing with the Enthusiasm Awakeners

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Later in the morning the best band in the world shows up.  At least that is what the sign says.  You be the judge.

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2 weeks ago Jason Haddock showed up at the race and really couldn’t believe what he saw here.  He is a distance runner from New Jersey and he liked the experience so much he brought his whole family with him this time.  “I am with my support crew.”

How he found out about the race at all he said is by simply stumbling across the website.  “I was flabbergasted by how anyone could have the ability to complete that amount of distance, in that short of time.”

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In 2 weeks Jason is going to run his first 100 mile race in Vermont.  He tells me that he was very moved by the experience of being here earlier.  He says that a day ago he was in a pool enjoying the freshness of it and then he imagined how the runners here in Queens must be suffering because of the lack of shade.

“The physical aspect of this is very impressive.  But it is not an Olympic style event.  You can just feel the energy from these individuals as they are coming past.”  He has also done a few laps with some of the runners which he describes as very rewarding.  “You can just feel the peace, and the energy from them.”

“It is not something you can feel, touch, or see.  But it is a plain or vibe that you get, that really washes over you.  It is more intense than what you visibly see.  We are all very visual creatures.  There is a connection you have with others.  The runners out here are very attuned to their inner self.  If you are lucky they will share some of that with you, as they go through their journey.”

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“It is almost hallowed ground.  You are not coming here for a competitive, cutthroat physical event. You are coming instead for a very rewarding, satisfying, entitlement.  That people have the liberty to do with their physical bodies.  It is very touching.”

When he came originally he describes out of a sense of curiosity.  He was also hoping for some tips in which he could use in his first 100 mile race.  He says the best inspiration he has received here, which he can use in his own running is, “staying in that present moment.  I think it will be extremely powerful for me.”

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Prayer of the Day

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Recited by Surasa

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Enthusiasm Awakeners

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Do you want to enjoy a miracle?
It is very simple.
Always say “Yes!” to God!

Sri Chinmoy, Seventy-Seven Thousand Service-Trees, Part 1, Agni Press, 1998

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3 Comments to “July 7: Doing The Same Miracles”

  1. Francesco says:

    Thank you Utpal!

  2. Chanakhya says:

    A continued inspiration 🙂

  3. nirmala says:

    My God this family is amazing, we are all inner space and we are outer space, look of how fast the cookies went from this wonderful family who came and brought sweets, some seemed more common while one was a rare brand as I understood. The rare ones may give so much joy that it speaks so loud for themselves. My God and Suprabha was here and Nilpushpi’s piano that I like so much and Ashprihanal reaching halfway point, what a celebration for him.

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