July 28… You Do Your Best

Quite often I will do a lap in the morning with Ananda-Lahari for no other reason than he is just an incredibly pleasant person to be with.  His  effervescent sunny optimism and dedication to this mind boggling race are a constant reminder to me and probably you as well.

That we should not complain so often or be as critical of our own predicaments, no matter how bad they might appear to be.  Particularly when we compare our ordeals and burdens with that of the runners and what they each have to endure here every day.

Ananda-Lahari being the lowest person on the board, we as armchair observers can sometimes be tempted to fall absentmindedly into a dismissive habit of considering his presence in the race as unspectacular or not as important as that of the others .

That his 1995 miles, when compared to Yuri’s 2596, is a difference of more than 600 miles.  That this means somehow that he isn’t achieving as much.  But we sell him short when we do this.  When we use  some artificial and meaningless yardstick that we dare to hold up and measure him with.

Screen Shot 2016-07-28 at 6.14.07 PM
1995 miles he has run would take him from his home in Kosice Slovakia to the middle of Uzbekistan *Apologies to the Caspian Sea*

This attitude on our parts is of course completely wrong.  And if you spend any time with him at all.  Do a lap or listen on the blog you will immediately see the depth and brightness of who he is and what he is really achieving each and every day.

ananda-lahari atmavri-1380470

Today is incredibly humid and when I ask if this affects him he says, “No, you are here and have to do your miles in any kind of weather.  You have to do your best.”

“It can influence you that you are slower or faster but it doesn’t really change anything.”

The last time we talked he had mentioned how he was trying to not be distracted by things going on around him.  I ask him a little more about this and he confesses that certain things do draw his attention.  He points at the little flower garden at the edge of the camp.  “I always look at them.  When they made the garden it changed something here.  It is really nice.”

Screen Shot 2016-07-28 at 3.33.25 PM

“I also look at the places that I remember that Sri Chinmoy was here when he visited the course.  Giving his concerts or doing his exercise.”  Ananda-Lahari says that his encounters with his spiritual teacher over the many years of running here include practically ever spot on the course.  He sweeps his hand in front of him in a large circle.  He says either he was driving his own car or being driven.

By now we come up to the little brick alcove where the Enthusiasm Awakeners sing each morning.  “This is the spot where he used to give concerts.  It was amazing.”

Original photo by Abakash
Original photo by Abakash

“I visualize it and it gives me joy. It uplifts me.  Sri Chinmoy was a very very special person, and very very inspiring to me.”

When I ask him about the daily appearances of the Enthusiasm Awakeners.  “I love it.  For me it is very uplifting.  I like Sri Chinmoy’s music and they sing the songs of Sri Chinmoy.  They are the Enthusiasm Awakeners and they do it with real enthusiasm.”


“I believe it is mutual.  It uplifts the runners and I guess it uplifts them as well.  It adds to the race something special.”

flower ananada-lahari-1380486

Who is my hero?
No, not a good God-talker.
Who is my hero?
No, not a good God-dreamer.
Who is my hero?
No, not a good God-lover.
Who is my hero?
No, not a good God-server.
Who is my hero?
My hero, indeed, a God-bleeding-heart
And a God-blossoming-life.

Sri Chinmoy, Enthusiasm, part 9

*Click Below to read rest of Report*

The quiet time……Humidity 72%

pre clock-1380131

The van arrives

pre van-1380134

The board


Yuri arrives

pre yuri-1380143


pre surasa-1380136

Ashprihanl in the motor home

pre ashprihanal-1380146

Ananda-Lahari arrives

pre ananda-lahari-1380147


pre girls-1380140


pre yuri-1380145

Start Day 40


First steps

first steps-1380154

Sun rise

flower yuri-1380162

Yuri did 64 miles yesterday


He now has 2596 miles

yuri gc-1380264

He has a 20 mile lead on Ashprihanal.


He has just 504 miles more to go


Dry leaves

flower ashprihanal-1380161

Ashprihanal did 70 miles


He now has 2576 miles

ashprihanal sopan-1380361

If he continues to run this well he will overtake Yuri in just a couple more days.

ashprihanal -1380341

“I getting to really hate this job with the Sanitation department.  They pay you peanuts and we are here for 40 minutes and the truck still hasn’t arrived.”


Ashprihanal and the singers

flower parvati-1380269

Atmavir did 42 miles

atmavir good-1380272

He now has 2544 miles


The real thing

flower vasu-1380478

Vasu did 59 miles

vasu very good-1380316

He now has 2482 miles


His blister is still giving him some trouble


Service road

flower kaneenika-1380157

Kaneenika had a good day with 57 miles


She now has 2401 miles

kaneenika akbota-1380495

With the 13 days left to complete 700 miles she now needs to average 53 miles per day


A light touch

flower good-1380164

By the school

flower surasa-1380476

Surasa did 52 miles


She now has 2335 miles


She now needs to complete 58 miles a day on average

surasa vishvarupani-1380497

Anything is possible


“I’ve inspected this bus from top to bottom.”

“Lets load up the kids now and take them to the peanut factory.”


By the fence

flower baladev-1380482

Baladev did 54 miles


He now has 2174 miles.  His shirt says Go Forward.  I mention this to him and he said, “Everyone needs to go forward.”


First light

flower sopan-1380160

Sopan did 45 miles


He now has 2132 miles



flower stutisheel-1380481

Stutisheel did 35 miles


He now has 2103 miles


He is slowly recovering from various ailments

stutisheel feeet-1380389

Not quite there


Ananda-Lahari did 42 miles and has 1995 miles


Days are getting shorter


Nirjharini checking on Surasa

nirjharini surasa-1380490

Sahishnu bagging ice

sahishnu ice-1380498

Swamiji visiting the course on the webcam

Screen Shot 2016-07-28 at 7.17.06 PM

Thunder storms parting as they pass over Queens

Screen Shot 2016-07-28 at 7.13.58 PM

This morning I asked Kakali about coming and singing with the Enthusiasm Awakeners

“It is one of the most important things that I can do for my Guru.”

“This manifestation of Guru’s I feel is so monumental and so far reaching.  It is such an honor to be chosen as one of the girls and come and sing every day.”


“I feel that I make such a little contribution.  I am not a runner, but my heart is totally with these runners. And it one of the things I can do for Guru.  The best thing.”

“It is total joy and I feel that I am being blessed over and over again by coming here each day.”

Click to Play:


Kakali reads the Daily Poem


Click to Play:

poem kakali

Just for the pink of it


Enthusiasm Awakeners


Click to Play:


You may think
You are sincerely doing your best
To expand your heart,
But you can do even more:
You can make room for others
Inside your oneness-heart.

flower good-1380193

One thought on “July 28… You Do Your Best”

  1. Dear Utpal,

    There are enthusiasm-runners, there are enthusiasm-singers and there are some excellent enthusisasm-reporters!!!

    Keep on going, all of you. You are amazing!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *