“It is perfect weather. Perfect temperature but there could be a few more clouds.”
Yesterday Ashprihanal finished up his 22nd day of running on the course. Most will know of course that he has been here many times before. That in fact this is the 14th time he has spent his summer running around Thomas Edison High school.
Who is my best friend, who?
He who gives me his rainbow-smile.
Who is my worst foe, who?
He who hides his heart-beauty-smile.
Though you can add up all the numbers and attempt to try and make sense of it all. To be honest even though my math is pretty good I have to confess that I can’t understand it at all. How does a 45 year old man from Finland do this?
The why part is something that I do however find is a lot more easily get some feeling for. That is if you can grasp the concept, that though it looks like a foot race it really isn’t.
It is a pilgrimage in which the participants gradually and inexorably draw closer to something that on the surface looks impossibly far but ultimately lies right there inside each of those who run. The good news as well, it is inside you and I as well.
This morning he completed his 41,756 mile on this course. Which according to the best number crunchers probably means he has run more competitive miles in races than anyone in history. This may mean something to Ashprihanal, but he doesn’t really show it.
As he gets towards the half way point he says, “it is nice for your mind. To know that you have done more than you have yet to go. You begin to feel that it will probably end at some point.”
Ironically he says that around 10 days into the race it feels, “like it just goes on and on.”
“There are always nice times. To balance the tough times. It has been okay. It has been pretty good. So I am happy.”
If you want to see the inspiration at the heart of all this it best may become clear when you look at a video shot when Ashprihanal finished the race in 2007. He won that year and Sri Chinmoy said of him,
“My dear Ashprihanal. I am offering you my heart’s infinite, infinite, infinite, love, and infinite, infinite, infinite, gratitude. And my life’s boundless pride, boundless pride, boundless pride.”
“You have done extremely, extremely well in this 3100 miles. Your aspiration flames and your aspiration fire are brightening, brightening, and brightening your life’s destination. The Golden shore. My heart is all gratitude to you, and my love is all pride in you.”
No runners yet
Vajra has just finished cleaning the course.
The van arrives
Rupantar checks the mileage
Yuri salutes as he arrives
Vasu is here
Baladev works on shoes
Kaneenika gets a shoulder rub
Start Day 23
A beautiful day on the course
Vasu did 56 miles. His lowest number for this year. He has 1542 miles
Atmavir had 66 miles.
He has 1526 miles and now lies just 16 miles behind Vasu
Yuri did 64 miles
He now has 1486 miles
Ashprihanal did 66 miles
He has 1456 miles
Surasa did 65 miles
She has 1423 miles
By the school
Kaneenika did 64 miles
She has 1402 miles
She is doing very well
On the edge
Sopan did 62 miles
He has 1271 miles
More than enough
Vajra doing some car maintenance
Stutisheel had a tough day with 32 miles. He has 1270 miles.
Across the road
Baladev had 52 miles. He has 1256 miles
By the way
Translating the daily prayer into Russian
Ananda-Lahari had 56 miles
He has 1231 miles
A little is a lot
“I love being here because I myself like to run.” Irina is one of Kaneenika’s helpers.
“I am only here in the mornings and then I have to be someplace else.”
“Here it is pleasant work and at the other place I go it is also pleasant.”
“Although I am doing outer work here. I feel that inwardly I have to be very strong in order to inspire my runner.”
*translation by Lyalya*
Click to Play:
Poem of the Day (read in English and Russian)
Click to Play:
Click to Play:
My soul commands,
“Go on, go on, go on,
To clasp and claim