August 6: Straight To My Heart

“Thank you everybody for being here.  This race wasn’t easy at all for me.  I had some really difficult times.  The Doctors didn’t know what to do with me and they were deciding at one time if I could even continue the race or not.  But then Aparajita appears and he started to sing Sri Chinmoy’s songs to me.  And they went straight into my heart.  And from there a feeling of devotion, joy, and happiness started to come from within me, and it flooded my entire being completely.  It was then that I understood that everything in my life was going to be really good.”


Now here I am happy and joyful.  Standing right in front of you.  Thank you Sri Chinmoy, thank you Supreme.”

Play speech:

yuri speech


51 days and a few hours ago,  Yuri Trostenyuk started off on a long difficult quest to reach this little spot of concrete upon which he now stands.  The fact that it is exactly the same spot he started from long ago is one of life’s great cosmic ironies.  That you endure and suffer through so much to end up right back where you started from.


Yet for Yuri and also for Nidhruvi, who will arrive here in just a few hours more, there is no sense of futility or meaninglessness.  It is true that nothing outwardly has changed around them at all.  But all who do this race do not come here for what they see but only for what they will become.  For their true goal exists only in heartfelt depths of their own beings.  This is why they have taken their lives on the 3100 mile, great and impossible journey.

It is an epic trek, one that has changed and transformed them in ways they have yet to completely to be aware of and understand.  Their self transcendence will gradually reveal itself, to both of these first time runners, just as it has for all who have been here also this and year and all those who have made this race the center of their lives for the past 17 summers.

For these chosen few, have not only taken part in what has to be the most difficult sport of all time, but as well been simultaneously part of a divine inner pilgrimage. One in which there is never failure.  The accurate measurements of time and distance are not ultimately at all what this race is all about.  The suffering, the pain, the fatigue, the mental conflicts, and all the other  foibles and failures of humanity are all here but are also irrelevant.  Self Transcendence is to reveal only who and what we are within.  To bring us back the unmeasurable distance to our own glowing divinity within.



“In his first finish I would have to say that this man smiled more times and waved more hands of joy than any runner in the history of this race.  He is a quiet and unassuming man.  He is a plumber with 2 kids and a wife back in Vinnitsa Ukraine.  But this was his dream to be here.”  Sahishnu

Dedication to Stutisheel


Play finish:

yuri finish


My Lord Supreme wants me
     To run
Straight towards Him.

Sri Chinmoy, Seventy-Seven Thousand Service-Trees, Part 32, Agni Press, 2003


For a little while let us turn the clock back to this morning. Yuri arrives for the last time with just 18 miles to go.
Rupantar plays for Yuri a Russian translation of, ‘you are a good runner.’
Nidhruvi has 35 miles more
Baladev likes the numbers he has right now but will be here until midnight just the same on this his last day.
This is the last morning for all of this
It doesn’t like much but so many miracles have taken place here over the years.
From space not much is revealed either.  But this is the entire course as seen from above.
On the ground the start looks like this.
You could not ask for a better day.
I spoke a few days ago with Yuri and this is what he said at that time.
“When I saw all the others finish I was in heaven.  I have never felt this kind of happiness before.  I felt complete oneness with the runners.  I felt as though it was me finishing.  All the joy those finishing runners felt, I felt it within myself as well.  When Vasu and Atmavir finished the kind of energy I felt also entered into me I felt it as though I was running.”
“Yesterday after Ashprihanal’s finish there was a kind of tranquility that entered into me.  Which allowed me to feel oneness with everyone around and also the peace that was within them.”
“All the runners have special unique qualities and I could distinctively feel them.  This is wonderful. It is getting better and better.”
When asked about his own finish then.  “This is a feeling I have within my own heart and it is one that is getting stronger and stronger as the finish line approaches.”
He also never worried despite all his difficulties about reaching the finish line. “I always felt the Supreme’s love and concern.  And when I was experiencing the difficult moments my mind couldn’t believe it.  Because my heart could already see the finish.  But my mind couldn’t believe why these things were happening to me, at that particular moment.”
“Right now I am living in my own heart, which is a place that is very beautiful, it is very nice, and I feel a lot of joy.  I never had this kind of feeling before.  I am reveling in this feeling at this very moment and I am very happy.”
“Now I understand why runners are coming over and over again, year after year to do this race.  This is very beautiful, and this is very powerful, and this is very inspiring.”
To all those in Oneness Dream Boat shore.  “I would like to thank them for the enormous, enormous, enormous support that I feel from them.  This support that they were offering to me was as powerful as the mighty ocean.  During my difficult moments this support was really propping me up, and was supplying me with energy.”
 “The hearts of those disciples supporting me I feel it throbbing within my own heart.  My gratitude to those disciples has no bounds. I feel that these disciples were running with me, and this joy and gratitude that I am experiencing now I am offering it all back to them.  Thanks to them so much.”
Play interview:
The course will have runners on it until midnight.  Ananda-Lahari will be one of them.
He starts the day with 265o miles.
Baladev who started the day with 2776 will run until he has done enough.
He has a song he wants to share with you.
Click below
We will see lots more of Baladev here.
Sarah has come for the first time and has stayed until the very end.
She is a great champion
No one will be surprised to see her again on the course.
The Enthusiasm Awakeners salute this magnificent young woman.
Sopan is also a great hero for what he has accomplished here.
He has conquered many things.
sopan wide
The Swami has been here many days.
A place that he feels as both a test of himself as well as a sacred home
Ultimately we all move at our own speed.
Some things not moving too much at all.  Or at least not now.  These happiness rocks were painted by Parvati’s mom Joey. Her goal is to make 1,000 and distribute them around the world.
All different and all painstakingly and beautifully done by hand.
Nobody is quite sure just why Vasu is running again this morning.
He and Nicolay pick out some rocks to take back home.
He also does some yoga in the little park.
Looking all so relaxed.yoga2
Including this one who will soon play tennis.
Others have to keep moving all day long.
Surasa had said how much she wanted to sit.  Today she has a chair and a friend in Snehashila.
She is still getting mail with congratulations.
It is hard to show it all, both the big and the small.
Sarvagata finishes his 5,000 km today.
Then does some work helping with the board.
Continue and continue
One of the ladies who has been walking on the course every morning poses with the Enthusiasm Awakeners.
A Picture that Sylvia took
So for good measure I take one of her as she picks out her favorite rock.
Parvati’s favorite is this one she says.
I spoke with Nidhruvi for one last time.
Speaking of the daily prayer.  “It is definitely meant for me.  Today is the last day of the race and I am going to finish, and I got this challenge last night.  Before I went home, with my knee, and this morning I get this prayer.  So I think that everything has to go alright.”  Nidhruvi
Recited by Nidhruvi
Talking about her knee.  “I had an old injury there.  It is the ligaments, it is swollen.  Before I went home it started.  I thought, what was this?  It got really big swollen.”  She says that she stopped 10 minutes early, just before midnight in order to try and look after it.  “To let it rest.  I thought, okay, another big challenge.  The race is not over yet. I thought I must have another special task to perform.  Or whatever it is.”
“Whatever this means there is nothing that can hold me back to reach the goal.  I know in the inner world that it is done.  Guru has done it already.  It is written.  I just have to have faith and believe that everything is going to be alright.  It is Guru’s victory.”
“I really want to have a nice day and be happy.  And don’t let this little unpleasant friend bother me.”
“I am a person who is always like that.  I can’t give up.  Even when I wanted to.  At the beginning of the race after 2 weeks when I got this muscle inflammation.  I was brand new in this race, and it was so huge.  This wave of fear came over me.  I was thinking, my God, my dream is shattering.  I was thinking what will happen, to go on, or I will not be able to finish it.”
“Then I learned really to surrender, and let my dream go.  Whatever the Supreme wants is right, and not what I want or expect.  So there was a moment when I had this first injury.  I was thinking what shall I do?  Should I go home?  Should I change my flight?  This moment came also.  But just once.  Then I cast it aside and said NO!”
“This is something very special and unique here, it is not only about running.  It is much much more in the inner world.  This was my big experience when I had to walk for 2 and a half days.  Now I am on my last day.  So even if these are forces, or my own ignorance, or the ignorance of the world.  I must not care.”
“I must feel that I am embraced by my Master…….and just stay happy.”
“I can see in life that you must always go on.  Never lose hope.  Go on, go on, and never ever give up.  It doesn’t matter what happens to you.  Never give up your dreams.  You can dream and then you can try and realize them.  But at the end you always have to surrender.  You never know what God’s plans are.”
To play interview:
One last thanks to Kevin, Corrina, and this canine.  Who has shown up a lot here.
Another dog is also well liked here and who also likes others a lot.
Then it is all about Nidhruvi and her wonderful finish after her long wonderful race.
She is admired by many, not just here but also around the world.
Particularly by another lady from Vienna who finished last night, Surasa
She makes sure to thank all her helpers
She is given the tough cookie award which she deserves after going through so much and also taking a fall recently.
Surasa the great.
Enthusiasm Awakeners
I am deeply grateful to so so many of you, who have followed this little offering of mine from time to time, or for some, every day.  There are those who have made comments that show me just how much you have identified with this very unique event that Sri Chinmoy created on this city block here in Queens NY.
Francesco of course has done something wonderful by writing something every day, but many others have also been moved.  They identify in their own unique way, with the Self Transcendence 3100 Mile race.  But just the same I am happy and grateful to all of you, the silent, the bold, the aspiring, and all those dreaming of their own self transcendence.  Much much gratitude…..Utpal

The path of the heart
Is not only straight
But also vast,
     Very vast.

Sri Chinmoy, Seventy-Seven Thousand Service-Trees, Part 22, Agni Press, 2001


19 thoughts on “August 6: Straight To My Heart”

  1. perfection journey it is and ever shall be. May our own perfection journeys blossom stronger in the wake of the trails these heroes blaze.

  2. Utpal, I bow to thee, I bow to each and every one of the runners, the helpers, the organizers – is Guru not amazing in his power of inspiration, transformation and leading us to such inner depths? And are disciples not amazing in their readiness to accept such unbelievable challenges? And show the world what true sacrifice, perseverance, oneness, aspiration, service, selflessness, faith, simplicity and inner satisfaction can mean?

    Here one of my favourite mantra-songs – the last part beautifully goes with the title of the post:

    Forward to the shore!
    God will offer you
    His silver Throne.

    Upward to the stars!
    God will offer you
    His golden Crown.

    Inward to the source!
    God will offer you
    His diamond Heart.

    – Sri Chinmoy (

  3. Thank you so much Utpal for your divinely beautiful selfless service!!!

    Congratulations to all the runners and helpers and thank you all!!!

  4. Utpal thank you very much!!!
    Thank you, for your fantastic selfless service.
    For the people not in NY the race exists because of you!
    No words enough to thank you, only deep GRATITUDE!!!
    I will miss your daily blog.
    See you soon in NY.

  5. Thanks Uptal for your blog from those downunder. Your special words and pictures about our great runner from Adelaide who silently suffered to reach 52 days were very caring. She has completed a great inner journey Maybe see you next April.

  6. Thank you very much for this amazing possibility to try to grasp the greatness of this race (journey). It has been and still is very very inspiring. Gratitude!

  7. It will take some time to digest this race, especially the interviews and the intensity expressed in the runners’ faces! I am crossing my fingers for those who are still on the course. I hope, that the runners will write down more of their experiences, like Grahak did, for us to better comprehend the process of real self-transcendence.

    I personally received a lot of reassurance and encouragement from the runners to go on and try to make our world a more peaceful place by becoming a more peaceful person myself. It would be selfish in some way to desire the race to go on. All runners, helpers and organizers have done a lot to make this race happen and deserve now some rest. But I can only imagine how much they will miss it since even those who are thousands of miles away from Queens are already missing it.

    Only you Utpal, know how much work and courage (remembering the heat wave and your prayers to be able to continue working for the blog!)went into writing, taking pictures and uploading them. I also did not oversee that we were privileged to get your reports without any interruption.

    Thank you so much!

  8. I can’t live without Self-Transcendence,
    I can’t live without 3100 Mile Race,
    I can’t live without sport,
    I can’t live without music,
    I can’t live without nature,
    I can’t live without Guru but
    I can live without ignorance…

  9. Thank you, Utpal, for your insightful and moving comments on the race. I followed the news daily, and your accounts of the runners’ accomplishments and challenges have been very inspiring for my running. I hope you get some rest yourself! And I hope to be at a multiday soon to see you in person.

  10. It was our mutual journey and that is you who made it possible. Thank you, dear brother Utpal.

  11. this race Guru gave us so that we can experience the life to the full, so we have it in our heart, I bow to Aparajita his singing did miracles to Yuri and for that I am very very thankful, unimaginably grateful for he did it for us all. I bow to Aparajita.

  12. Congratulation Nidruvi! This nice poem from the Golden boat part 12 is about such heroiness like you : Green as young grass her heart is, therefore she runs to the farthest beyond.Blue as a vast sky her heart is, therefore she flies into the farthest beyond. Red as the morning sun her heart is, therefore she illumines the world without. White as Himalayan snow her heart is, therefore she feeds the world within. With deep gratitude for your inspiring and energising efforts on 3100 miles superb journey, Elena, Moldova,ODBS.

  13. Dear Utpal,

    Thank you very much for your service. Perfection Journey was always among the first things I’ll check in the morning. Thank you for your constancy, for the depth of all your reports and for always finding new angles to share this uniquely special event. See you!

  14. All gratitude for such an inspiring work of art in this journal the whole race. Thank you a million times. 🙂

  15. Thank You so much Utpal, for your inspiring writing that has uplifted my heart and so many other hearts each time we read it.

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