“It’s coming close to the end.” I don’t think I have ever seen Sopan this happy in the past 51 days. This morning however he has a great reason to be having such joy that it can bring additional light up into the sky. He is just a few laps away from 3,000 miles and now less than 2 days from completing the Sri Chinmoy Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race.
It is never a foregone conclusion that this would happen nor is it ever so for even the most gifted of runners. The race will always challenge you, and humble you, and nurture you in ways you could never dream.
It was 13 years ago as a young person of 25 that he set the record for the youngest runner to ever run the race. In the great gap in between he has not always been granted the gift of completing the distance.
Tomorrow however it will most certainly be his personal victory. A victory over adversity which dogged his heels for many days and yet could not contain his will to succeed. Or perhaps it is just the light within declaring that this summit of transcendence he has justly earned. A goal he surrendered all of himself, to the higher force within, in order to attain.
When asked if he was ever worried, “you never know until the end. Anything can happen. But you have to have faith in order to make it. You cannot doubt yourself all the time and make it.”
“You have to believe. You have to believe that you can make it. That is your very first step.”
“I have gotten physically stronger. It is possible because as you grow spiritually stronger it also makes you physically stronger. I had some difficulties about 10 days ago and I felt that this made me stronger.”
“Even on the worst days everything just worked out. That is the whole magic about the race. It feels as though there is always a guiding and protecting force. Things just work out one way or another.”
Sopan is happy of course that the finish line is getting very close. He hopes to try and continue and maintain the inner experience that he felt here this year. He wants to build upon it.
He says disconnecting from the race is unavoidable. “But the inner cry always remains. For me this race is all about the transformation of nature. This remains, it doesn’t go away.”
When asked about Sri Chinmoy, the founder of the race, Sopan says, “I don’t feel his physical presence. But I feel that he is spiritually present here. His spiritual force is more alive than ever. The spiritual force, the inner presence, for me is much more important than the physical.”