Re: HOW TO DO THE IMPOSSIBLE
- Thanks for the kind words, Nayak.
Of course, I'm merely reporting what's going on. In August, I did
plenty of interviews, which are ready to be turned into stories --
and hope to do many more. The thanks should really go to those
who are doing so many awesome manifestations -- and are
happy to talk about it!
--- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, nayak_ltp
> Mark's story is so nice, so well-written and enjoyable. This ispriyadarshan44
> exactly the way to get the word out: through interesting stories.
> Thanks, Mark!
> --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com,
> <no_reply@y...> wrote:promise
> > HOW TO DO THE IMPOSSIBLE
> > by Mark Juddery
> > Advertisements for comedy shows and movies often
> > "non-stop laughter" to the audiences. Of course, this is a7.25kg
> > slight exaggeration. To laugh non-stop for 90 minutes
> > would require astounding reserves of energy and physical
> > fitness.
> > Last year in Munich, Ethiopian strongman Belachew Girma
> > took up the challenge. Laughing for an hour and 40 minutes
> > (seemingly at nothing), he worked the crowd into a lather
> > of shared hysteria -- and broke the world record for
> > laughter. After his triumph, he lay on the ground, too
> > exhausted even to smile.
> > No doubt he was smiling once he recovered -- not just at
> > his own victory, but also at the events which surrounded
> > him on that day.
> > The Impossibility-Challenger tends to inspire people that
> > way. Here is a sporting festival where nobody wins fame,
> > fortune, or major sponsorship deals. (At least, not yet.)
> > However, many of the competitors are the best at what they
> > do. The organisers are students of Sri Chinmoy, and the
> > object is in keeping with Sri Chinmoy's axiom: "to
> > overcome human limitations and to challenge the seemingly
> > impossible."
> > For many (though not all) of the athletes, the game is
> > "Guinnessport". This term was coined in the seventies, to
> > describe the daredevil antics that earned a place in The
> > Guinness Book of World Records, the world's best-selling
> > book. An annual event during the 1980s, it returned last
> > year after a decade in hiatus.
> > Over the space of a single day, the impossible happened -
> > numerous times. A Slovakian muscleman juggled three
> > shot putts, keeping them in the air for 52 minutes. A
> > Czech juggler set 124 records in 100 minutes, using
> > various parts of his body to move everything from dice to
> > coconuts. An Austrian 'cello virtuoso played continuously
> > for over 11 hours. A yoga instructor did a 32-minute
> > head-stand, hands behind the head.
> > The king of Guinnessport - and the chief drawcard - was
> > not about to be upstaged. In the space of a few hours,
> > American athlete Ashrita Furman (also one of Sri Chinmoy's
> > students) broke not one record, but three: one mile of
> > hula-hoop spinning, one mile of lunges (in which the knee
> > had to touch the ground at every step), and standing on a
> > gymnastic ball. (He remained balanced for two hours and 11
> > minutes, bettering his own previous record by over an
> > hour. Not simply a token record, but a significant leap.)
> > Guinnessport followers have come to expect the impossible
> > from him. Ashrita has broken so many records, in so many
> > disciplines, that in 1987, Guinness editor Norris
> > McWhirter presented him with the title "Mr. Versatility",
> > and allowed him a bonus record: the most world records in
> > unrelated categories.
> > Anke Riedel, director of the new
> > Impossibility-Challenger, remembers the previous event
> > back in 1990, when Ashrita broke a record for playing the
> > most hopscotch games in 24 hours. At that same event,
> > karate masters sliced blocks of ice, and one daredevil
> > rode a bicycle backwards while playing the violin. The
> > Impossibility-Challenger was nothing if not diverse.
> > In bringing back the event, Anke wanted a return to the
> > magic of that eccentric, but nonetheless inspiring meet.
> > Obviously, the idea is to go beyond human limitations. But
> > what makes this event different from most other sports
> > festivals (including many other Guinnessport festivals) is
> > the emphasis on something else: fun.
> > "We can all find different ways to transcend ourselves,"
> > says Anke. "It need not be something serious, but you can
> > just try something in any field you choose. Not everybody
> > can run as fast as Carl Lewis, for example, but some
> > people can run backwards."
> > As many of the events might suggest, endurance is often
> > more important than speed. In fact, the
> > Impossibility-Challenger includes one race where the
> > winner is LAST across the finish line.
> > It might sound (and even look) funny, but the race is not
> > a joke. The event is "slow bicycling", which requires some
> > skill. "You have to cycle 100 metres without touching the
> > ground," Anke explains. "You have to stay in your lane.
> > It's an exercise in concentration and patience." Qualities
> > that, like endurance, can be practised and improved,
> > whatever one's "natural" ability.
> > This year's Impossibility-Challenger, to be held on
> > November 9, already has an intriguing program, with many
> > of last year's champions returning. Super-brain Rolf Laue,
> > who last year memorised 96 binary numbers in one minute,
> > will attempt something quite different: one-mile
> > coin-tossing. Kosovan athlete Agim Agushi, who bounced a
> > football on his head for 15 kilometers, will attempt to
> > break another record for bouncing a ball, this time in a
> > seated position. The indefatigable Ashrita is also
> > expected to return.
> > Anke says that, after a day of watching these events
> > (even those which don't make the record books), one is
> > inspired to transcend oneself, to do better in one's own
> > chosen field of endeavour.
> > So, as the director, will she be attempting her own
> > records in the future?
> > She laughs at the thought. Maybe later, but not for a
> > while. "It's enough of a record to organise it!"