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Re: The way of the warrior

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  • sharani_sharani
    Hi Doris, I did go off in a different direction and apologize if my pursuit of the topic of Sri Chinmoy s writings on illness misrepresented your perspective
    Message 1 of 14 , May 31, 2007
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      Hi Doris,
      I did go off in a different direction and apologize if my pursuit of
      the topic of Sri Chinmoy's writings on illness misrepresented your
      perspective and context. Your point is well taken that undertaking the
      race is a purely voluntary matter whereas the kind of learning that
      one might encounter in other ways such as illness seems entirely
      different.

      The way in which you describe how helping at the race transformed you
      is also very moving. I have never worked at the race - just gone to
      watch it for brief moments in time as an observer. I agree with your
      words that it is a "heroic effort to go on this not so comprehensable
      pilgrimage of brave runners."

      Sometimes I feel like a new book of Genesis is being written for the
      world and the evolution of human beings through what happens on that
      race course. Lately for me just getting out and walking every day for
      a half hour for 13 weeks without missing a day is my own version of
      Mt. Everest. So from my perspective 3100 miles seems like I must be
      talking about a different universe altogether.

      I definitely took a slight turn off the course by writing about Sri
      Chinmoy's writings on illness. You did use the word "some" to qualify
      your comment about illness and karma. My impetus to write about it and
      search for Sri Chinmoy's writings on the topic is partly because I've
      been exposed to more than my share of prevailing sentiments in New Age
      circles that equate illness and karma in a simplistic way. And I come
      sincerely from a place of concern - especially as I think of friends
      and family that I know who are currently facing challenges such as
      cancer or chronic debilitating conditions.

      Again, I apologize for misunderstanding your comment and feel consoled
      that it appears we are actually in agreeement on this subject. I
      welcome hearing more from you at some later time and most of all, I
      hope that your own health is soon much improving.

      Sharani

      --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, cott_doris
      <no_reply@...> wrote:
      >
      > Dear Sharani,
      >
      > I consciously tried to compensate my incomplete statement with the
      > word "some" due to already mentioned physical incapacity. Thank you
      > for making it perfect by quoting the master.
      >
      > Being a mother myself I would never attribute and I never did
      > attribute my children to the below said.
      >
      > I would like to come back later to the subject in a different post,
      > since this post was dedicated to the runners of the 3100 mile race.
      > In a way you took my statement slightly away from it's context. My
      > intention was to underline the heroic effort to go on this not so
      > comprehensable pilgrimage of brave runners.
      >
      > Doris
      >
      > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, sharani_sharani
      > <no_reply@> wrote:
      > >
      > > Dear Doris and Smarana,
      > > Your conversation about the 3100 mile race, the wisdom it offers to
      > > both the participants and observers and the subject of illness/karma
      > > weave a very thought-provoking and interesting topic. Thank you for
      > > sharing your thoughts with all of us and I do hope that you both
      > find
      > > healing and are feeling better soon.
      > >
      > > As part of the discourse, Doris commented,
      > > "some diseases are the result of a past action, as we all know
      > > nowadays. That is no secret. And it is up to the person to see
      > > illness as a golden opportunity (if not forced to) to change it's
      > > life, make progress and be grateful."
      > >
      > > Somehow - correctly or incorrectly - I have the impression that
      > karma
      > > and illness are not necessarily mere cause and effect. I'm prone to
      > a
      > > fierce protective streak sometimes and I think the motherly side of
      > me
      > > would never wish for anyone to attribute their illnesses to karma
      > > without giving themselves the credit that it could be happening for
      > > multiple other reasons.
      > >
      > > With the idea to explore the topic further, I was intrigued to look
      > > for some of Sri Chinmoy's writings on illness in his online library
      > > and see if I could find out more about his philosophy on this
      > subject.
      > > If you type in the word illness in the Sri Chinmoy online library,
      > > there are 51 search results and if you subtract the ones where it
      > is a
      > > poem, fictional story or aphorism, there remain about 13 answers to
      > > questions related to this topic. These writings are overflowing with
      > > deep food for thought on the subject of illness from a spiritual
      > > perspective.
      > >
      > > Here is a selection excerpted on the subject exactly:
      > >
      > > "Question: How much of illness is due to karma and how much is due
      > to
      > > physical factors?
      > >
      > > Sri Chinmoy: It is a very complicated matter. Sometimes the
      > > constitution of an individual is not strong, either because of
      > > hereditary factors or from lack of nourishment during childhood. So
      > he
      > > is a victim to sickness quite often. Or sometimes the wrong forces
      > get
      > > pleasure by attacking an aspiring soul..."
      > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/soul-evolution/12.html
      > >
      > >
      > > The following selection relates to the relationship between
      > gratitude
      > > and healing:
      > >
      > > "There is a lot of sickness and sadness in the world. What is the
      > best
      > > way to seek spiritual healing?
      > >
      > > Sri Chinmoy: The best way to seek spiritual healing is to offer
      > > gratitude every day for a fleeting second to the Supreme Healer.
      > When
      > > we offer gratitude to Him for what we have or for what we are right
      > > now, then our heart of aspiration and dedication expands. That means
      > > that our receptivity increases. When receptivity increases, God's
      > > Light, which is all healing, can enter into us in abundant measure.
      > It
      > > is in the heart of gratitude that God's Light can permanently
      > > abide.Illness is all around. How can we cure it? We can cure it only
      > > through our gratitude-heart. We have to offer our gratitude to the
      > > Absolute Supreme that He has given us the sincere inner cry to cure
      > > humanity's suffering. There are many who do not care to cure illness
      > > either within themselves or within the world. There are many
      > millions
      > > and billions of people on earth, but how many are crying to cure the
      > > sufferings an ills of mankind? Very few..."
      > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/giver-receiver/13.html
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > This question and answer discuss the power of prayer:
      > >
      > > "Question: Do you think it is possible for a seeker to cure physical
      > > illness through prayer?
      > >
      > > Sri Chinmoy: Absolutely! Suppose your father is sick and you pray to
      > > God. If your prayer is soulful, then God will definitely cure your
      > > father if that is His Will. But even if your prayer is most soulful,
      > > if God wants your father to go through an experience of sickness, He
      > > knows what is best for your father as well as for you. Then you have
      > > to know that God Himself is suffering in and through your father. It
      > > is God Himself who is having that particular experience. But even if
      > > God does not cure your father, your soulful prayers will not be
      > lost.
      > > God will fulfil your prayers in a different way..."
      > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/canada-aspires/part2/33.html
      > >
      > >
      > > The following portion of a question and answer displays Sri
      > Chinmoy's
      > > thoughts on how illness begins on the thought level long before it
      > > manifests on the physical:
      > >
      > >
      > > "Question: Is there any way that we can avoid minor illnesses like
      > > colds?
      > >
      > > Sri Chinmoy: Certainly. We can avoid them if we can pay attention to
      > > their first warning in the mental plane. In the mental plane we get
      > a
      > > warning, but we neglect it. We feel that it will not come to the
      > > physical plane. As soon as we notice that we are going to get an
      > > attack on the physical plane, we have to fight against it. Just to
      > > notice the warning on the mental plane is not enough. We have to
      > fight
      > > against it immediately. Otherwise, from the mental plane it will
      > come
      > > to the vital and then to the physical plane. While it is in the
      > mental
      > > plane we do not pay attention to it; therefore, it starts
      > descending.
      > > Once it comes to the vital plane it becomes very difficult to stop
      > it.
      > > And when it reaches the physical it is most difficult.
      > >
      > > No disease, not even a little cold, can immediately attack us on the
      > > physical plane. First it attacks on the mental plane. But we do not
      > > know what is happening on the mental plane because most of the time
      > we
      > > remain in the physical consciousness. So until the ailment has
      > > attacked our physical body we are not aware of it..."
      > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/politics-spirituality/43.html
      > >
      > >
      > > The selection from his writings which touched me the most starts out
      > > as an answer to a question about the suffering of animals and ends
      > > with a profound discourse on the role of oneness with God's will in
      > > one's life as the only key to true happiness. Here is one excerpt
      > > although if you are like me you will want to follow the link and
      > read
      > > the entire piece.
      > >
      > > "To come back to your question, animals do suffer. Categorically I
      > > cannot say why. If I see the animal, I will be able to tell. In
      > > general, the answer is that God is having an experience in and
      > through
      > > them. Even to come to that realisation is a most difficult thing.
      > When
      > > somebody pinches me, I want to give a slap to that person - tit for
      > > tat. But if we have a higher realisation, then we can see that it is
      > > God who is pinching us and God who is experiencing in and through us
      > > either suffering or joy. God has formed a circle and He is moving
      > > around the circle. This moment we call it joy; the next moment we
      > call
      > > it sadness or sorrow, and the next moment we see that this is only
      > His
      > > Game. Perfection is in accepting the suffering as such and the joy
      > as
      > > such. We have to become conscious instruments of God to give Him the
      > > satisfaction of experiencing suffering or joy. If we have a higher
      > > realisation, we do not see imperfection in God's creation. We see
      > that
      > > what we call imperfection or suffering is something that has to be
      > > transformed into permanent ecstasy or delight."
      > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/sri-chinmoy-answers/part19/1.html
      > >
      > >
      > > I feel it is such a blessing to have the wisdom and guidance of Sri
      > > Chinmoy's writings and inner assistance with life's thorniest and
      > > complicated sufferings. Concerning the notion of illness starting
      > on
      > > a thought level, I must say that in some cases my congenital and
      > > hereditary spinal problems have an uncanny knack for flaring up on
      > the
      > > coattails of some emotional suffering.
      > >
      > > My last bout that really sidelined me 1 1/2 years ago was shortly
      > > after a verbal pummeling from my parents that left me doubting my
      > own
      > > worth. It must have been hardly a coincidence that after losing a
      > > round on the mental battlefield I suddenly had serious issues to
      > > grapple with in my physical body. And I was especially lucky to have
      > > that particular bout also removed shortly thereafter during a brief
      > > outer conversation with Sri Chinmoy in New York. The tales of his
      > > healing miracles can and do fill multiple tomes of disciples'
      > personal
      > > experiences as his students.
      > >
      > > This personal example of the relationship between the mental plane
      > and
      > > the physical leads me to believe and agree that the qualities of the
      > > spiritual heart (grown stronger through meditation) are a powerful
      > > tool regarding illness. And with the comments on living in the
      > > spiritual heart as the key to a wonderful multi-day race, I guess I
      > > have come full circle and find we are all speaking the same
      > language -
      > > the language of the heart - taught to us most lovingly by Sri
      > Chinmoy
      > > himself.
      > >
      > > Sharani
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, cott_doris
      > > <no_reply@> wrote:
      > > >
      > > > Yes, me to can't go...lament, lament
      > > >
      > > > Once more your way of responding proves your modesty, Smarana.
      > > >
      > > > Whereas the 3100 mile race is a self-chosen journey or how can I
      > call
      > > > it? some diseases are the result of a past action, as we all know
      > > > nowadays. That is no secret. And it is up to the person to see
      > > > illness as a golden opportunity (if not forced to) to change it's
      > > > life, make progress and be grateful. And many of you if not all
      > did
      > > > not run the 3100 miler once but several times.
      > > >
      > > > I learned already a lot according to my human understanding.For
      > > > instance, it is surely not only up to you runners to talk about
      > your
      > > > inner experiences but it is rather we who have to talk about you
      > and
      > > > praising you!
      > > >
      > > > When I first tried to feel something by imagining the number 3100
      > I
      > > > sincerely got frightend and closed up. The next time I merely
      > > > imagined the number the mind gave space for it and I saw a wide
      > but
      > > > empty field.
      > > >
      > > > It took us only two times of counting you runners in two days
      > (more
      > > > was not possible) to become kind of *addicted*, addicted in the
      > sense
      > > > of feeling the importance and oneness to help or serve in this
      > race.
      > > > (I wrote a message back last year and don't want to repeat
      > myself).
      > > >
      > > > In the airplane going back to Switzerland with my friend we didn't
      > > > speak much but knew what the other was thinking because we left
      > right
      > > > from the race to the airport.
      > > >
      > > > At home we checked the race internet site everyday for news and
      > were
      > > > [http://www.srichinmoyraces.org/3100%5d
      > > > happy about the many photos on which one could clearly see the
      > > > changes in the faces of the runners. Unforgetable! Each runner's
      > face
      > > > according to his and her temperament was shining with light. And
      > the
      > > > interviews!!
      > > >
      > > > Now I was happy to see Helmut running the 6/10 day race in New
      > York.
      > > > For those who don't know Helmut served Madhupran the world record
      > > > holder the whole time like a brother. We also very much enjoyed
      > his
      > > > humour. He told us he would not run long distances anymore
      > because of
      > > > injuries. And now you see that!
      > > >
      > > > Doris
      > > >
      > > > P.S Maybe your soul knew how to end the poem-song.
      > > >
      > > > "Experience is my teacher
      > > > I love him, and I love him.
      > > > Realisation is my tutor
      > > > I love plus I need him."
      > > >
      > > > A comment on divine love from your mouth is like a "slap" to the
      > > > world to wake up.
      > > >
      > > > Who does not go through that. I get very much and immediate
      > > > inspiration from Krishna Das who says in his song from the
      > CD "Door
      > > > Of Faith"
      > > >
      > > > "I have no love
      > > > Nor do I know You.
      > > > I don't even have the strength
      > > > To worship You.
      > > > But this mind of mine, this body of mine,
      > > > My every atom is dedicated to You."
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
      > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, smarana31
      > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
      > > > >
      > > > > Thank you Doris for your reply!
      > > > >
      > > > > Especially the following sentence was urging my attention and
      > > > > response; maybe also because right now I am sick myself and can
      > not
      > > > go
      > > > > to the joyday.
      > > > >
      > > > > This is so very right what you said.
      > > > >
      > > > > "I thought maybe people with serious diseases or people being in
      > > > pain
      > > > > suffering from this or that have a little bit of a similar
      > > > experience."
      > > > >
      > > > > Well the runners might get a little bit more of attention for
      > the
      > > > > 3100miles race, but are we not all in a kind of long endurance
      > > > > "contest/race..."
      > > > >
      > > > > Everybody is running the "race", but in a different form. Some
      > are
      > > > > artists, some are poets,musicians, some are karmayogis..., I
      > guess
      > > > > most of us have little pit of everything, so we all have to run
      > our
      > > > > individual race.
      > > > >
      > > > > Nothing is better or worse, it is just our way of making
      > progress,
      > > > or
      > > > > becoming a better person.
      > > > >
      > > > > Experience is my teacher
      > > > > I love plus I need him.
      > > > > (unofficial) Sri Chinmoy
      > > > >
      > > > > P.S.:
      > > > > (I not always love, but I need him)
      > > > > Smarana
      > > > >
      > > > > I run the worlds longest race
      > > > > to dine with gods boundless grace
      > > > > Sri Chinmoy (unofficial)
      > > > >
      > > > > Cheers to all
      > > > > Smarana
      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, cott_doris
      > > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
      > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > > > I am so happy to get some insights into this world of your's
      > while
      > > > > > running, I would even write more but can not sit for too long
      > but
      > > > > > find it worth to reply to.
      > > > > >
      > > > > > You are both most probably right in what you are saying. I
      > > > > > particularly 'admire' Smarana's and others modesty on speaking
      > > > about
      > > > > > the long run.
      > > > > >
      > > > > > I thought maybe people with serious diseases or people being
      > in
      > > > pain
      > > > > > suffering from this or that have a little bit of a similar
      > > > experience
      > > > > > fighting maybe for their life, what is actually not my case
      > but a
      > > > > > friends'. You know what I mean?
      > > > > >
      > > > > > Someone's receptivity to God might have been increased through
      > > > pain
      > > > > > or through the grace of God and someone may feel that by
      > making
      > > > fun
      > > > > > of him or her unintentionally, who might even be called a
      > doctor
      > > > one
      > > > > > might receive a very good life energy and increases one's
      > > > willpower
      > > > > > in the never ending race.
      > > > > >
      > > > > > Doris
      > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, smarana31
      > > > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Hi dear fellow runner,
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > how nicely you have described and the innocent joy of a
      > > > > > > child, that only the child in the runner can taste to the
      > > > > > > full extend. Sri Chinmoy always emphasises the importance of
      > > > > > > a childlike attitude. If we can feel like a 7 year old
      > child,
      > > > > > > we are immediately living in our heart and enjoying
      > > > > > > experiences in its pristine essence, without the mind as an
      > > > > > > intermediate station, that wants to explain and analyse. If
      > > > > > > the mind is involved, things are getting dry and the
      > > > > > > fragrance goes away. The mind has its meaning for counting
      > > > > > > 1+1 and things like that, but if we want to taste the
      > > > > > > immediate pristine joy, we have to stay in the heart.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Yes, definitely every runner is a different person after
      > such
      > > > > > > a race, as you wrote, that in the beginning you do not
      > > > > > > recognise it, but at least after the race, you feel that you
      > > > > > > have left an old life behind. You have worn off so much of
      > > > > > > the old stuff, that you were carrying around, and the body
      > > > > > > seems to shine with an inner light. At least, that is the
      > way
      > > > > > > I feel it. The chakra of light, that is getting stronger as
      > > > > > > the race advances, is spinning and helping the runners, to
      > > > > > > keep the pace, and go on day for day. Madhupran Schwerk, the
      > > > > > > current world record holder for the 3100miles race (42days)
      > > > > > > said, "There is so much prana around, I can just feel it and
      > > > > > > use it."
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > I always tell people, that this race is more a pilgrimage
      > > > > > > than a competition. It may be ten years back, when Al Howie,
      > > > > > > an ultra-running legend said, "You come to the ultraraces
      > > > > > > from The Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team, and you leave as a
      > better
      > > > > > > person." For all the critics, is that not a reason?
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Happy running and keep fit
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Smarana
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, sopan_31
      > > > > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > 3100 Miles! What is to run 3100 miles? How does it feel to
      > > > > > > > run in circles for 50 days with not a single day off? You
      > can
      > > > > > > > never know if haven't been there running on the stone hard
      > > > > > > > concrete, under the blazing merciless hot sun, fighting
      > > > > > > > fatigue, injuries, problems and going through emotional
      > > > > > > > extremes due to the harsh conditions of this challenge of
      > a
      > > > > > > > life time.
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > You start running as someone, you keep running as the same
      > > > > > > > person for a week or two and than you realize you are
      > someone
      > > > > > > > else and than someone else and someone else, you keep
      > > > > > > > changing, the world around you changes, it becomes more
      > > > > > > > simple, little things give you joy, simple jokes make you
      > > > > > > > laugh loud.
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > You are bound to the invisible chakra circle of energy,
      > 883
      > > > > > > > meter loop but you are more free than ever in your life,
      > you
      > > > > > > > can scream with laughter, you can jump, you can push
      > yourself
      > > > > > > > ever harder and your joy and happiness know no bounds
      > because
      > > > > > > > you are fulfilling the mission of your existence,
      > manifesting
      > > > > > > > the unlimited will power, unleashing the spirit of the
      > > > > > > > warrior, the kshatria who has finally found the
      > battlefield
      > > > > > > > of his dreams where he can master ever more all the
      > invisible
      > > > > > > > weapons of the spirit.
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > You are free because the divine innocent child has come
      > > > > > > > forward running around to please its parents. This divine
      > > > > > > > child is simple all it needs is running in circles, there
      > is
      > > > > > > > no care in the world that can destroy its faith in his
      > father
      > > > > > > > and love for its mother for this faith and love give the
      > > > > > > > "golden child" unbounded energy and purpose in its life.
      > What
      > > > > > > > can make the child more happy than pleasing its parents
      > and
      > > > > > > > showing them how humbly and faithfully it can undertake
      > the
      > > > > > > > seemingly impossible task given to it by them.
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > The world of the runners is a world of its own the same
      > way
      > > > > > > > the world of the children is a world of there own. No
      > adult
      > > > > > > > can taste the joy of the children running in circles from
      > > > > > > > morning to evening. We say that the 3100 is a mind
      > breaker.
      > > > > > > > If your mind does not become childlike but at the same
      > time
      > > > > > > > sincerely serious of the long journey than you cannot
      > > > > > > > continue, your pride of an adult comes forward and says:
      > > > > > > > "this is so stupid and meaningless, doing circles, what is
      > > > > > > > this I have more serious things to do" but the child is
      > happy
      > > > > > > > in its simplicity.
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > "The world's
      > > > > > > > Longest distance-runners
      > > > > > > > Are God's Heart-treasured children."
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > [unofficial]
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > -Sri Chinmoy
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > Sopan
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > >
      > > >
      > >
      >
    • cott_doris
      Sharani, enthusiasm-rascal-queen you are. ;-) ... the ... you ... comprehensable ... for ... qualify ... and ... I ve ... Age ... come ... consoled ... you ...
      Message 2 of 14 , Jun 1, 2007
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        Sharani, enthusiasm-rascal-queen you are. ;-)




        --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, sharani_sharani
        <no_reply@...> wrote:
        >
        > Hi Doris,
        > I did go off in a different direction and apologize if my pursuit of
        > the topic of Sri Chinmoy's writings on illness misrepresented your
        > perspective and context. Your point is well taken that undertaking
        the
        > race is a purely voluntary matter whereas the kind of learning that
        > one might encounter in other ways such as illness seems entirely
        > different.
        >
        > The way in which you describe how helping at the race transformed
        you
        > is also very moving. I have never worked at the race - just gone to
        > watch it for brief moments in time as an observer. I agree with your
        > words that it is a "heroic effort to go on this not so
        comprehensable
        > pilgrimage of brave runners."
        >
        > Sometimes I feel like a new book of Genesis is being written for the
        > world and the evolution of human beings through what happens on that
        > race course. Lately for me just getting out and walking every day
        for
        > a half hour for 13 weeks without missing a day is my own version of
        > Mt. Everest. So from my perspective 3100 miles seems like I must be
        > talking about a different universe altogether.
        >
        > I definitely took a slight turn off the course by writing about Sri
        > Chinmoy's writings on illness. You did use the word "some" to
        qualify
        > your comment about illness and karma. My impetus to write about it
        and
        > search for Sri Chinmoy's writings on the topic is partly because
        I've
        > been exposed to more than my share of prevailing sentiments in New
        Age
        > circles that equate illness and karma in a simplistic way. And I
        come
        > sincerely from a place of concern - especially as I think of friends
        > and family that I know who are currently facing challenges such as
        > cancer or chronic debilitating conditions.
        >
        > Again, I apologize for misunderstanding your comment and feel
        consoled
        > that it appears we are actually in agreeement on this subject. I
        > welcome hearing more from you at some later time and most of all, I
        > hope that your own health is soon much improving.
        >
        > Sharani
        >
        > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, cott_doris
        > <no_reply@> wrote:
        > >
        > > Dear Sharani,
        > >
        > > I consciously tried to compensate my incomplete statement with the
        > > word "some" due to already mentioned physical incapacity. Thank
        you
        > > for making it perfect by quoting the master.
        > >
        > > Being a mother myself I would never attribute and I never did
        > > attribute my children to the below said.
        > >
        > > I would like to come back later to the subject in a different
        post,
        > > since this post was dedicated to the runners of the 3100 mile
        race.
        > > In a way you took my statement slightly away from it's context. My
        > > intention was to underline the heroic effort to go on this not so
        > > comprehensable pilgrimage of brave runners.
        > >
        > > Doris
        > >
        > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, sharani_sharani
        > > <no_reply@> wrote:
        > > >
        > > > Dear Doris and Smarana,
        > > > Your conversation about the 3100 mile race, the wisdom it
        offers to
        > > > both the participants and observers and the subject of
        illness/karma
        > > > weave a very thought-provoking and interesting topic. Thank you
        for
        > > > sharing your thoughts with all of us and I do hope that you both
        > > find
        > > > healing and are feeling better soon.
        > > >
        > > > As part of the discourse, Doris commented,
        > > > "some diseases are the result of a past action, as we all know
        > > > nowadays. That is no secret. And it is up to the person to see
        > > > illness as a golden opportunity (if not forced to) to change
        it's
        > > > life, make progress and be grateful."
        > > >
        > > > Somehow - correctly or incorrectly - I have the impression that
        > > karma
        > > > and illness are not necessarily mere cause and effect. I'm
        prone to
        > > a
        > > > fierce protective streak sometimes and I think the motherly
        side of
        > > me
        > > > would never wish for anyone to attribute their illnesses to
        karma
        > > > without giving themselves the credit that it could be happening
        for
        > > > multiple other reasons.
        > > >
        > > > With the idea to explore the topic further, I was intrigued to
        look
        > > > for some of Sri Chinmoy's writings on illness in his online
        library
        > > > and see if I could find out more about his philosophy on this
        > > subject.
        > > > If you type in the word illness in the Sri Chinmoy online
        library,
        > > > there are 51 search results and if you subtract the ones where
        it
        > > is a
        > > > poem, fictional story or aphorism, there remain about 13
        answers to
        > > > questions related to this topic. These writings are overflowing
        with
        > > > deep food for thought on the subject of illness from a spiritual
        > > > perspective.
        > > >
        > > > Here is a selection excerpted on the subject exactly:
        > > >
        > > > "Question: How much of illness is due to karma and how much is
        due
        > > to
        > > > physical factors?
        > > >
        > > > Sri Chinmoy: It is a very complicated matter. Sometimes the
        > > > constitution of an individual is not strong, either because of
        > > > hereditary factors or from lack of nourishment during
        childhood. So
        > > he
        > > > is a victim to sickness quite often. Or sometimes the wrong
        forces
        > > get
        > > > pleasure by attacking an aspiring soul..."
        > > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/soul-evolution/12.html
        > > >
        > > >
        > > > The following selection relates to the relationship between
        > > gratitude
        > > > and healing:
        > > >
        > > > "There is a lot of sickness and sadness in the world. What is
        the
        > > best
        > > > way to seek spiritual healing?
        > > >
        > > > Sri Chinmoy: The best way to seek spiritual healing is to offer
        > > > gratitude every day for a fleeting second to the Supreme Healer.
        > > When
        > > > we offer gratitude to Him for what we have or for what we are
        right
        > > > now, then our heart of aspiration and dedication expands. That
        means
        > > > that our receptivity increases. When receptivity increases,
        God's
        > > > Light, which is all healing, can enter into us in abundant
        measure.
        > > It
        > > > is in the heart of gratitude that God's Light can permanently
        > > > abide.Illness is all around. How can we cure it? We can cure it
        only
        > > > through our gratitude-heart. We have to offer our gratitude to
        the
        > > > Absolute Supreme that He has given us the sincere inner cry to
        cure
        > > > humanity's suffering. There are many who do not care to cure
        illness
        > > > either within themselves or within the world. There are many
        > > millions
        > > > and billions of people on earth, but how many are crying to
        cure the
        > > > sufferings an ills of mankind? Very few..."
        > > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/giver-receiver/13.html
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > > This question and answer discuss the power of prayer:
        > > >
        > > > "Question: Do you think it is possible for a seeker to cure
        physical
        > > > illness through prayer?
        > > >
        > > > Sri Chinmoy: Absolutely! Suppose your father is sick and you
        pray to
        > > > God. If your prayer is soulful, then God will definitely cure
        your
        > > > father if that is His Will. But even if your prayer is most
        soulful,
        > > > if God wants your father to go through an experience of
        sickness, He
        > > > knows what is best for your father as well as for you. Then you
        have
        > > > to know that God Himself is suffering in and through your
        father. It
        > > > is God Himself who is having that particular experience. But
        even if
        > > > God does not cure your father, your soulful prayers will not be
        > > lost.
        > > > God will fulfil your prayers in a different way..."
        > > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/canada-aspires/part2/33.html
        > > >
        > > >
        > > > The following portion of a question and answer displays Sri
        > > Chinmoy's
        > > > thoughts on how illness begins on the thought level long before
        it
        > > > manifests on the physical:
        > > >
        > > >
        > > > "Question: Is there any way that we can avoid minor illnesses
        like
        > > > colds?
        > > >
        > > > Sri Chinmoy: Certainly. We can avoid them if we can pay
        attention to
        > > > their first warning in the mental plane. In the mental plane we
        get
        > > a
        > > > warning, but we neglect it. We feel that it will not come to the
        > > > physical plane. As soon as we notice that we are going to get an
        > > > attack on the physical plane, we have to fight against it. Just
        to
        > > > notice the warning on the mental plane is not enough. We have to
        > > fight
        > > > against it immediately. Otherwise, from the mental plane it will
        > > come
        > > > to the vital and then to the physical plane. While it is in the
        > > mental
        > > > plane we do not pay attention to it; therefore, it starts
        > > descending.
        > > > Once it comes to the vital plane it becomes very difficult to
        stop
        > > it.
        > > > And when it reaches the physical it is most difficult.
        > > >
        > > > No disease, not even a little cold, can immediately attack us
        on the
        > > > physical plane. First it attacks on the mental plane. But we do
        not
        > > > know what is happening on the mental plane because most of the
        time
        > > we
        > > > remain in the physical consciousness. So until the ailment has
        > > > attacked our physical body we are not aware of it..."
        > > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/politics-spirituality/43.html
        > > >
        > > >
        > > > The selection from his writings which touched me the most
        starts out
        > > > as an answer to a question about the suffering of animals and
        ends
        > > > with a profound discourse on the role of oneness with God's
        will in
        > > > one's life as the only key to true happiness. Here is one
        excerpt
        > > > although if you are like me you will want to follow the link and
        > > read
        > > > the entire piece.
        > > >
        > > > "To come back to your question, animals do suffer.
        Categorically I
        > > > cannot say why. If I see the animal, I will be able to tell. In
        > > > general, the answer is that God is having an experience in and
        > > through
        > > > them. Even to come to that realisation is a most difficult
        thing.
        > > When
        > > > somebody pinches me, I want to give a slap to that person - tit
        for
        > > > tat. But if we have a higher realisation, then we can see that
        it is
        > > > God who is pinching us and God who is experiencing in and
        through us
        > > > either suffering or joy. God has formed a circle and He is
        moving
        > > > around the circle. This moment we call it joy; the next moment
        we
        > > call
        > > > it sadness or sorrow, and the next moment we see that this is
        only
        > > His
        > > > Game. Perfection is in accepting the suffering as such and the
        joy
        > > as
        > > > such. We have to become conscious instruments of God to give
        Him the
        > > > satisfaction of experiencing suffering or joy. If we have a
        higher
        > > > realisation, we do not see imperfection in God's creation. We
        see
        > > that
        > > > what we call imperfection or suffering is something that has to
        be
        > > > transformed into permanent ecstasy or delight."
        > > > http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/sri-chinmoy-
        answers/part19/1.html
        > > >
        > > >
        > > > I feel it is such a blessing to have the wisdom and guidance of
        Sri
        > > > Chinmoy's writings and inner assistance with life's thorniest
        and
        > > > complicated sufferings. Concerning the notion of illness
        starting
        > > on
        > > > a thought level, I must say that in some cases my congenital and
        > > > hereditary spinal problems have an uncanny knack for flaring up
        on
        > > the
        > > > coattails of some emotional suffering.
        > > >
        > > > My last bout that really sidelined me 1 1/2 years ago was
        shortly
        > > > after a verbal pummeling from my parents that left me doubting
        my
        > > own
        > > > worth. It must have been hardly a coincidence that after losing
        a
        > > > round on the mental battlefield I suddenly had serious issues to
        > > > grapple with in my physical body. And I was especially lucky to
        have
        > > > that particular bout also removed shortly thereafter during a
        brief
        > > > outer conversation with Sri Chinmoy in New York. The tales of
        his
        > > > healing miracles can and do fill multiple tomes of disciples'
        > > personal
        > > > experiences as his students.
        > > >
        > > > This personal example of the relationship between the mental
        plane
        > > and
        > > > the physical leads me to believe and agree that the qualities
        of the
        > > > spiritual heart (grown stronger through meditation) are a
        powerful
        > > > tool regarding illness. And with the comments on living in the
        > > > spiritual heart as the key to a wonderful multi-day race, I
        guess I
        > > > have come full circle and find we are all speaking the same
        > > language -
        > > > the language of the heart - taught to us most lovingly by Sri
        > > Chinmoy
        > > > himself.
        > > >
        > > > Sharani
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > >
        > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, cott_doris
        > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
        > > > >
        > > > > Yes, me to can't go...lament, lament
        > > > >
        > > > > Once more your way of responding proves your modesty, Smarana.
        > > > >
        > > > > Whereas the 3100 mile race is a self-chosen journey or how
        can I
        > > call
        > > > > it? some diseases are the result of a past action, as we all
        know
        > > > > nowadays. That is no secret. And it is up to the person to see
        > > > > illness as a golden opportunity (if not forced to) to change
        it's
        > > > > life, make progress and be grateful. And many of you if not
        all
        > > did
        > > > > not run the 3100 miler once but several times.
        > > > >
        > > > > I learned already a lot according to my human
        understanding.For
        > > > > instance, it is surely not only up to you runners to talk
        about
        > > your
        > > > > inner experiences but it is rather we who have to talk about
        you
        > > and
        > > > > praising you!
        > > > >
        > > > > When I first tried to feel something by imagining the number
        3100
        > > I
        > > > > sincerely got frightend and closed up. The next time I merely
        > > > > imagined the number the mind gave space for it and I saw a
        wide
        > > but
        > > > > empty field.
        > > > >
        > > > > It took us only two times of counting you runners in two days
        > > (more
        > > > > was not possible) to become kind of *addicted*, addicted in
        the
        > > sense
        > > > > of feeling the importance and oneness to help or serve in this
        > > race.
        > > > > (I wrote a message back last year and don't want to repeat
        > > myself).
        > > > >
        > > > > In the airplane going back to Switzerland with my friend we
        didn't
        > > > > speak much but knew what the other was thinking because we
        left
        > > right
        > > > > from the race to the airport.
        > > > >
        > > > > At home we checked the race internet site everyday for news
        and
        > > were
        > > > > [http://www.srichinmoyraces.org/3100%5d
        > > > > happy about the many photos on which one could clearly see the
        > > > > changes in the faces of the runners. Unforgetable! Each
        runner's
        > > face
        > > > > according to his and her temperament was shining with light.
        And
        > > the
        > > > > interviews!!
        > > > >
        > > > > Now I was happy to see Helmut running the 6/10 day race in New
        > > York.
        > > > > For those who don't know Helmut served Madhupran the world
        record
        > > > > holder the whole time like a brother. We also very much
        enjoyed
        > > his
        > > > > humour. He told us he would not run long distances anymore
        > > because of
        > > > > injuries. And now you see that!
        > > > >
        > > > > Doris
        > > > >
        > > > > P.S Maybe your soul knew how to end the poem-song.
        > > > >
        > > > > "Experience is my teacher
        > > > > I love him, and I love him.
        > > > > Realisation is my tutor
        > > > > I love plus I need him."
        > > > >
        > > > > A comment on divine love from your mouth is like a "slap" to
        the
        > > > > world to wake up.
        > > > >
        > > > > Who does not go through that. I get very much and immediate
        > > > > inspiration from Krishna Das who says in his song from the
        > > CD "Door
        > > > > Of Faith"
        > > > >
        > > > > "I have no love
        > > > > Nor do I know You.
        > > > > I don't even have the strength
        > > > > To worship You.
        > > > > But this mind of mine, this body of mine,
        > > > > My every atom is dedicated to You."
        > > > >
        > > > >
        > > > >
        > > > >
        > > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, smarana31
        > > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Thank you Doris for your reply!
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Especially the following sentence was urging my attention
        and
        > > > > > response; maybe also because right now I am sick myself and
        can
        > > not
        > > > > go
        > > > > > to the joyday.
        > > > > >
        > > > > > This is so very right what you said.
        > > > > >
        > > > > > "I thought maybe people with serious diseases or people
        being in
        > > > > pain
        > > > > > suffering from this or that have a little bit of a similar
        > > > > experience."
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Well the runners might get a little bit more of attention
        for
        > > the
        > > > > > 3100miles race, but are we not all in a kind of long
        endurance
        > > > > > "contest/race..."
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Everybody is running the "race", but in a different form.
        Some
        > > are
        > > > > > artists, some are poets,musicians, some are karmayogis..., I
        > > guess
        > > > > > most of us have little pit of everything, so we all have to
        run
        > > our
        > > > > > individual race.
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Nothing is better or worse, it is just our way of making
        > > progress,
        > > > > or
        > > > > > becoming a better person.
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Experience is my teacher
        > > > > > I love plus I need him.
        > > > > > (unofficial) Sri Chinmoy
        > > > > >
        > > > > > P.S.:
        > > > > > (I not always love, but I need him)
        > > > > > Smarana
        > > > > >
        > > > > > I run the worlds longest race
        > > > > > to dine with gods boundless grace
        > > > > > Sri Chinmoy (unofficial)
        > > > > >
        > > > > > Cheers to all
        > > > > > Smarana
        > > > > >
        > > > > >
        > > > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, cott_doris
        > > > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > I am so happy to get some insights into this world of
        your's
        > > while
        > > > > > > running, I would even write more but can not sit for too
        long
        > > but
        > > > > > > find it worth to reply to.
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > You are both most probably right in what you are saying. I
        > > > > > > particularly 'admire' Smarana's and others modesty on
        speaking
        > > > > about
        > > > > > > the long run.
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > I thought maybe people with serious diseases or people
        being
        > > in
        > > > > pain
        > > > > > > suffering from this or that have a little bit of a similar
        > > > > experience
        > > > > > > fighting maybe for their life, what is actually not my
        case
        > > but a
        > > > > > > friends'. You know what I mean?
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > Someone's receptivity to God might have been increased
        through
        > > > > pain
        > > > > > > or through the grace of God and someone may feel that by
        > > making
        > > > > fun
        > > > > > > of him or her unintentionally, who might even be called a
        > > doctor
        > > > > one
        > > > > > > might receive a very good life energy and increases one's
        > > > > willpower
        > > > > > > in the never ending race.
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > Doris
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > >
        > > > > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, smarana31
        > > > > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > Hi dear fellow runner,
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > how nicely you have described and the innocent joy of a
        > > > > > > > child, that only the child in the runner can taste to
        the
        > > > > > > > full extend. Sri Chinmoy always emphasises the
        importance of
        > > > > > > > a childlike attitude. If we can feel like a 7 year old
        > > child,
        > > > > > > > we are immediately living in our heart and enjoying
        > > > > > > > experiences in its pristine essence, without the mind
        as an
        > > > > > > > intermediate station, that wants to explain and
        analyse. If
        > > > > > > > the mind is involved, things are getting dry and the
        > > > > > > > fragrance goes away. The mind has its meaning for
        counting
        > > > > > > > 1+1 and things like that, but if we want to taste the
        > > > > > > > immediate pristine joy, we have to stay in the heart.
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > Yes, definitely every runner is a different person after
        > > such
        > > > > > > > a race, as you wrote, that in the beginning you do not
        > > > > > > > recognise it, but at least after the race, you feel
        that you
        > > > > > > > have left an old life behind. You have worn off so much
        of
        > > > > > > > the old stuff, that you were carrying around, and the
        body
        > > > > > > > seems to shine with an inner light. At least, that is
        the
        > > way
        > > > > > > > I feel it. The chakra of light, that is getting
        stronger as
        > > > > > > > the race advances, is spinning and helping the runners,
        to
        > > > > > > > keep the pace, and go on day for day. Madhupran
        Schwerk, the
        > > > > > > > current world record holder for the 3100miles race
        (42days)
        > > > > > > > said, "There is so much prana around, I can just feel
        it and
        > > > > > > > use it."
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > I always tell people, that this race is more a
        pilgrimage
        > > > > > > > than a competition. It may be ten years back, when Al
        Howie,
        > > > > > > > an ultra-running legend said, "You come to the
        ultraraces
        > > > > > > > from The Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team, and you leave as a
        > > better
        > > > > > > > person." For all the critics, is that not a reason?
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > Happy running and keep fit
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > Smarana
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, sopan_31
        > > > > > > > <no_reply@> wrote:
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > 3100 Miles! What is to run 3100 miles? How does it
        feel to
        > > > > > > > > run in circles for 50 days with not a single day off?
        You
        > > can
        > > > > > > > > never know if haven't been there running on the stone
        hard
        > > > > > > > > concrete, under the blazing merciless hot sun,
        fighting
        > > > > > > > > fatigue, injuries, problems and going through
        emotional
        > > > > > > > > extremes due to the harsh conditions of this
        challenge of
        > > a
        > > > > > > > > life time.
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > You start running as someone, you keep running as the
        same
        > > > > > > > > person for a week or two and than you realize you are
        > > someone
        > > > > > > > > else and than someone else and someone else, you keep
        > > > > > > > > changing, the world around you changes, it becomes
        more
        > > > > > > > > simple, little things give you joy, simple jokes make
        you
        > > > > > > > > laugh loud.
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > You are bound to the invisible chakra circle of
        energy,
        > > 883
        > > > > > > > > meter loop but you are more free than ever in your
        life,
        > > you
        > > > > > > > > can scream with laughter, you can jump, you can push
        > > yourself
        > > > > > > > > ever harder and your joy and happiness know no bounds
        > > because
        > > > > > > > > you are fulfilling the mission of your existence,
        > > manifesting
        > > > > > > > > the unlimited will power, unleashing the spirit of the
        > > > > > > > > warrior, the kshatria who has finally found the
        > > battlefield
        > > > > > > > > of his dreams where he can master ever more all the
        > > invisible
        > > > > > > > > weapons of the spirit.
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > You are free because the divine innocent child has
        come
        > > > > > > > > forward running around to please its parents. This
        divine
        > > > > > > > > child is simple all it needs is running in circles,
        there
        > > is
        > > > > > > > > no care in the world that can destroy its faith in his
        > > father
        > > > > > > > > and love for its mother for this faith and love give
        the
        > > > > > > > > "golden child" unbounded energy and purpose in its
        life.
        > > What
        > > > > > > > > can make the child more happy than pleasing its
        parents
        > > and
        > > > > > > > > showing them how humbly and faithfully it can
        undertake
        > > the
        > > > > > > > > seemingly impossible task given to it by them.
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > The world of the runners is a world of its own the
        same
        > > way
        > > > > > > > > the world of the children is a world of there own. No
        > > adult
        > > > > > > > > can taste the joy of the children running in circles
        from
        > > > > > > > > morning to evening. We say that the 3100 is a mind
        > > breaker.
        > > > > > > > > If your mind does not become childlike but at the same
        > > time
        > > > > > > > > sincerely serious of the long journey than you cannot
        > > > > > > > > continue, your pride of an adult comes forward and
        says:
        > > > > > > > > "this is so stupid and meaningless, doing circles,
        what is
        > > > > > > > > this I have more serious things to do" but the child
        is
        > > happy
        > > > > > > > > in its simplicity.
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > "The world's
        > > > > > > > > Longest distance-runners
        > > > > > > > > Are God's Heart-treasured children."
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > [unofficial]
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > -Sri Chinmoy
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > > > Sopan
        > > > > > > > >
        > > > > > > >
        > > > > > >
        > > > > >
        > > > >
        > > >
        > >
        >
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