Run and become, become and run, part 10

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The starting line1

Today I ran fifteen miles in the Boston Marathon. Among the disciples, Abadh was the first one I saw. He was standing at the six-minute-pace section. I was tempted to join him, but I was afraid people would run over me. When you think of your capacity, you start in the back. When you forget about your capacity, you go forward.


  1. RB 493. 19 April 1982

Encouragement in Boston1

People who encourage the runners in the Boston Marathon are much more divine than people who encourage runners in many other races. How they cheered us on!

Even before I covered the first mile, I was totally exhausted. You can call it tiredness or hunger or thirst — God knows. After seven miles a little boy stood right in front of me and gave me a glass of water, literally forcing me to drink it.

I said, "How old are you?"

He said, "Four."

So many runners patted me on the back, saying, "Come along, friend, you can make it. Don't give up. Go on, go on, go on!" They were going ahead of me and encouraging me as they passed by. They were very nice people.


  1. RB 494. 19 April 1982

Kim1

One thin girl who had run in our twenty-four-hour race was running the marathon. She is very thin, like Kusumita. Her name is Kim. She had been behind me, but around the ten-mile point she passed me. As she went by she shouted, "Hello, Guru. I am happy to see you." While she was saying this, she was taking off her long-sleeved shirt. It was like our purple shirt. It had my picture on the back and said "Sri Chinmoy Marathon." Underneath she was wearing a short-sleeved T-shirt. I thought she would throw the long-sleeved shirt on the street, but she held it as she ran.

I saw two or three more non-disciples wearing different shirts of ours. But Kim was the only one who recognised me.


  1. RB 495. 19 April 1982

The hoses1

The children watching the Boston Marathon were so nice. Little, little children were offering us ice. The people who were spraying us with hoses were my best friends. But some runners didn't like it; they got annoyed. Some runners were for water and some were not. I was for water.

An elderly black man and I were running together, and two or three times people got so much joy from drenching us. We were two runners who were getting new life from the hoses. But other runners were cursing them. They had to go to the other side of the street to avoid the hoses.


  1. RB 496. 19 April 1982

Looking good!1

Even if you are dying, people always say, "Looking good!" At one point one girl said, "Looking good," to encourage me, and another girl corrected her. She said, "Doing good."


  1. RB 497. 19 April 1982

The boy from London1

There was a little boy seven or eight years old who was bragging that this was his fourth marathon. Somebody asked him where he was from. He said, "From London."

The man said, "From England?"

The boy said, "Where else?"


  1. RB 498. 19 April 1982

Blind runners1

In two or three places I saw blind men running. Each of them was holding a small cane and being guided by a person who could see.


  1. RB 499. 19 April 1982

Alaska Eskimo1

One elderly man came from the Alaska Eskimo Track Club. Two runners who were running behind him were repeating the mantra — "Alaska Eskimo." One would say "Alaska." The other would say "Eskimo." The elderly man was running in silence.


  1. RB 500. 19 April 1982

Some ripe fruits1

In today's eight-hundred-metre Green Leaves and Ripe Fruits race for men and women over fifty, Vince and I were going slowly and only keeping pace with Ilona during the first four hundred metres. But we knew that we would end up going ahead of her. After four hundred metres we started widening the gap, and Ilona fell behind us by a big margin. Whenever I increased my speed, Vince would increase his speed. In the last hundred metres we had a wonderful fight. I won by only one second.

I was planning to walk the whole race, but then Vince would have had no other competitor, except for a few ladies. His fate would have been like Senani's in the sixty-and-over race.


  1. RB 501. 25 April 1982

To smile or not to smile1

Yesterday, after running four miles, all of a sudden I thought of Dhrubha and Nayana. I had been cutting jokes with Dhrubha the previous night, telling him that his wife had a horrible running style, like Pulak. Then I said to myself, "Pulak is a little better."

Nayana and Dhrubha have exactly the same style, but Nayana twists her face and smiles while she runs. Dhrubha never smiles.


  1. RB 502. 27 April 1982

Blind disciples1

The day before yesterday I ran seven miles, yesterday I ran seven miles and this morning also I ran seven miles. When I was returning this morning, first I saw Jyotsna. She greeted me and smiled at me.

Then I saw Sanatan. For thirty or forty metres I was smiling at him, but he was blind; he could not see me. Then, when he came near me, he folded his hands.

Then I saw Sudhir on the other side of the street. Only when I started shouting his name did he recognise me. Then I saw Shephali. By that time I was dying.


  1. RB 503. 27 April 1982

Familiar faces1

Today as soon as I started running, I saw Gitika, and then on the other side of the street I saw Pidgeon. Then I saw Bob Barrett. I said to myself, "Since Bob is there, perhaps his wife is running behind him." I was right. O God, she was so far behind! Then I greeted her. As Bob was coming back to where I was, he shouted, "O Guru, it is so nice to see you!"

Then, after about two miles, somebody right behind me said, "Very good pace, very good pace!

I said to myself, "A joker!" and looked around. Whom did I see? It was the young black man who had stood third in our race on Sunday. He said, "You put on a very good race, and I enjoyed it very much." So I smiled at him. After two minutes he was still running ahead of me. Then, after three minutes, he was nowhere to be seen.

After about three miles I saw Karabi. As I continued running, I saw the young man returning. When he saw me, he raised his arms over his head, greeting me.


  1. RB 504. 27 April 1982

Take it easy!1

After I had run three and a half miles, I started returning. At the point where Parsons Boulevard meets Union Turnpike, usually I stop for a minute. This time I was running slowly and getting the inner courage to go faster. A young man drinking coffee or tea said to me, "I see you are tired. Take it easy, take it easy!" He was smiling at me.


  1. RB 505. 27 April 1982

The braggart1

Today Databir and I were buying running shoes. The young man who was selling the shoes was saying that all the shoes were very good, just because he wanted to sell them. When he brought out one particular shoe, he said that he had used this one to run a 4:46 mile. Then he said he had run 800 metres in 1:30. His best time of all was in the quarter-mile, he said. He was bragging that he had done a quarter-mile in 55 seconds — not only once, but twice.

I couldn't help laughing. I said, "I am an Indian. I did it in 54 and 53.6. Under 54 I did it many times before you were born."

Then he said, "I am so honoured that you have come."

Then Databir told him that I had done it without shoes, on a cinder track.

The first time, in 1945, I did the quarter-mile in one minute. Then in 1946 from one minute it came down to 56 seconds, then 55 and then always under 55-54, 53.9 and so on.


  1. RB 506. 28 April 1982

A seven-mile run1

At four o'clock this morning we vagabonds went to run. We had planned to run fifteen miles, but in the end we had to be satisfied with seven.

Seven miles a day I ran for five days. Is it a joke? And Union Turnpike has hills!

I have maintained my weight at 138 pounds for so many days! Today I have come down to 136. I have a chart of good runners. Out of twelve runners, only one runner is fat. Eleven are thin.


  1. RB 507. 29 April 1982

The bald-headed friend1

Before the start of the Long Island Marathon, an old bald-headed man came up to me. He didn't fold his hands, but he was full of reverential awe. He said, "Are you Sri Chinmoy?"

I said I was.

He said, "I am so happy and honoured to be here and speak to you. This is my first marathon."

So I congratulated him. He said, "I have run quite a few races of yours."

Then the funniest thing happened. After fourteen miles, I got the shock of my life. He was passing me coming from the other direction. I asked myself, "How could he be so far ahead of me if this is his first marathon?"

I waved to him. I usually don't wave to anybody, but he had been so nice to me. Later I realised that I was actually ahead of him. He finished far behind me.


  1. RB 508. 1 May 1982

Nice to see you1

Right before the marathon another man came up to me and said, "So nice to see you." He was a young man, very nice. He said, "It is getting warm, so I won't be able to do well."


  1. RB 509. 1 May 1982

The handshake1

Many runners greeted me during the Long Island Marathon. At least six or seven people recognised me and came up to me. One man was at least twenty metres ahead of me. All of a sudden he got the inspiration to stop. I said to myself, "Why did he stop?" He stopped only to shake hands with me.


  1. RB 510. 1 May 1982

All right1

At one point during the marathon I was walking for a few metres. There was one man who asked me if I was all right. He kept asking, "Are you really all right?"

I said, "I am all right."

Then he was telling the people who were helping me, "He is all right, don't worry."

Then I started running, but he was still walking.


  1. RB 511. 1 May 1982

Thundering legs1

Today, first I saw Nishtha the great, then Vidagdha the great. After I passed Vidagdha, I heard someone running towards me very fast. I said, "How can Vidagdha run so fast?" Then when I turned around, I saw it was Yasu.

After Yasu I saw Sundar. He was running so fast and making such noise with his legs; they were thundering!


  1. RB 512. 4 May 1982

The bee1

At one point while I was running a young boy was behind me. All of a sudden he got inspired to go ahead of me. He crossed the street only to be stung by a bee or some insect near a tree. He started screaming and holding his right eye. When I passed by that tree, I was praying I wouldn't get stung, and I didn't.


  1. RB 513. 4 May 1982

Late night encounter1

Last night a little after twelve-thirty I went running. After five and a half miles or so, when I was on my way back, I saw a car that was making absolutely unthinkable, unbearable noises. Luckily, I was on the other side of the street, so I was quite safe. Then that same car went ahead, made a U-turn and came to my side. It was still making such noise! So I jumped onto the sidewalk, and continued running quite peacefully.

Suddenly the car stopped right alongside of me. It was a red car with a black hood. Two young girls were inside. One of them said, "Excuse me, excuse me, are you Sri Chinmoy? Are you Sri Chinmoy?"

I said, "Yes."

She said, "We are so happy to see you. We saw you on television two days ago." They were so excited to see me at that hour. So I thanked them.

They were very, very nice girls, but what were they doing in that car at that hour?


  1. RB 514. 6 May 1982

The police chase1

While I was running, I saw a police car chasing another car. Both the cars were going so fast — at least eighty or ninety miles per hour. But the police car was not able to catch the culprit.


  1. RB 515. 6 May 1982

The neighbourhood run1

I was out running at three-thirty this morning near the old Bohack Supermarket. Now it is a Sunset Electric store. There is a bar across the street. Outside the bar I saw eight or ten undivine people. I said, "O God, let me go another way." So I had to retrace my steps and take another street in order to avoid them.

Then I was near Divine Robe Supreme. I wanted to go to the playground, so I took a side street, again only to meet four or five undivine people — near Chidananda's house. They were very bad people. So I went back and started running on another road. After I got to the track there was no problem. Then I ran alone on the beautiful track.

While coming back near Annam Brahma, I saw somebody trying to start his motorbike. The noise was unbearable. His girlfriend didn't want to go with him on the motorbike. With one hand he was holding the bike and with the other hand he was holding her.


  1. RB 516. 8 May 1982

The running nose1

Karabi is wonderful. Yesterday she saw me while I was running, but I didn't see her. She was in her car, coming back from the Queens College track. She gave a full description of what I was wearing.

After running five miles I was returning, near Main Street. According to my standard, I was going fast. But a middle-aged lady said to her friend, "His nose is running faster than his legs!"

It was true that my nose was running.

So the other lady said, "Yes, you go and join him and try to run."

Inwardly I thanked the second lady.

In the morning what kind of appreciation I get! These people's souls want to talk to me.


  1. RB 517. 8 May 1982

The secret run1

This morning before the ten-mile race, I ran to the three-and-a-half-mile mark in Flushing Meadow Park, and then I ran home.

Yasu saw me, then Kalatit and then Edythe. She was in a car, driving to Flushing Meadow to set up. But once I got home I pretended that I had not yet run so I could surprise everyone later.

During the race I was afraid Yasu would say, "I saw you running this morning," but fortunately he didn't say anything, so I kept my secret.

I was running so slowly during the ten-mile race that I didn't feel tired at all, even after nine miles. Then I waved to Lucy and Chetana, saying that I was going to go faster for the last mile.

So this morning altogether I ran seventeen miles.


  1. RB 518. 9 May 1982

How do you keep so fit?1

Before today's ten-mile race a black girl came up to me and said, "Sri Chinmoy?"

I said, "Yes."

She said, "How old are you?"

I said, "Fifty."

She said, "How do you keep your body so fit?"


  1. RB 519. 9 May 1982

Competitors1

In the ten-mile race an old man with a green shirt was in front of me for a while. Then he fell behind. Another runner, a girl in yellow, was getting cramp after cramp. These were some of my competitors.


  1. RB 520. 9 May 1982

9 May 19821

After the awards ceremony a man came up to me and asked me, "How do you like the shoes you are wearing?"

I told him, "They are very comfortable."


  1. RB 521. 9 May 1982

Running in Scotland1

While I was in Scotland recently, Janaka, Janani and I went running. David was following us in his car. After each mile David would honk. After three or four miles Janani surrendered. She started going very slowly.

I was proud that Janani was far behind us, because I still remember how she defeated me in Antigua. Altogether Janaka and I ran seven miles. Then we drove back to get Janani. She was so happy to stop running!

Afterwards, we went to an Indian restaurant, but unfortunately the food was very bad.


  1. RB 522. 20 May 1982

The hill1

On another day in Scotland I wanted to run my seven miles for the day. I ran with Janaka for three and a half miles. Two and a half miles were all hills that we had to really climb. Janani and David were watching us run.

Then we came to such a steep hill! It went straight up. We saw one man run about a hundred metres up the hill and we were admiring him. I also wanted to run up that hill, but the Scottish disciples were saying that the road was not good enough to run on.


  1. RB 523. 20 May 1982

The beautiful course1

The Scottish disciples showed me a place where they had taken Nemi a few years ago to show her the scenery, but Nemi hadn't liked it. It is a place where they run, near the water, and it is very beautiful. I liked it very much. I went running there along the water.


  1. RB 524. 20 May 1982

The hilly course1

In Scotland they have a thirteen-mile course which has five hills. Once a year they have a race there. Some of the runners there are so strong and they do so well. Other people just deceive everyone because it is easy to take a short cut or to start somewhere along the course.


  1. RB 525. 20 May 1982

Such a difference!1

Another day in Scotland there was a two-and-a-half-mile race. At the finish, the boy who stood first was at least five hundred metres ahead of the person who was second. The second one was about a hundred metres ahead of the third. Such a difference!


  1. RB 526. 20 May 1982

The clever man1

I am a clever man. I ran seven miles before our five-mile race started so that I could enjoy watching the race. While I was running, a huge dog was following me. Then another dog was bothering me. A videotape was made, and it shows the dogs bothering me.


  1. RB 527. 20 May 1982

The five-mile race1

Over two hundred people ran in our five-mile race. Many were excellent runners. How fast they ran! One had been in the Commonwealth Games. He did a 4:22 pace and came in first. The second runner was far behind him and the third was far behind the second.

Abarita was the fifth over-all. For the first mile Abarita ran with the top runners. I was so happy. Then, at the second mile, he fell behind. He could not keep up with them. Among the disciples Abarita was the first boy and Indu was the first girl. The girl who stood first over-all was far ahead of Indu. She was quite fat, but she was such a fast runner!


  1. RB 528. 20 May 1982

The children runners1

Devashishu is going to be an excellent runner. He ran a seven-minute pace in the five-mile race, and a six-thirteen in a two-mile race. His father was so far behind him!

Everybody thought that Devashishu's little brother, Aaron, had got lost, but he was running at an eleven or twelve-minute pace. When the father finished, he ran back to find Aaron, and then he started running with him. They were coming towards the finish line together so I said, "Now let us have the physical father and the spiritual father run together with the son." So I was on one side and his father was on the other. Aaron was killing himself to beat us. I stopped deliberately to let him go ahead, and he was so delighted that he could defeat me. But his father didn't stop.


  1. RB 529. 20 May 1982

Two unforgivable things1

Hashi has done two unforgivable things. In the Long Island Marathon I got such a leg cramp and mental cramp at nineteen miles, and she went ahead of me.

Then, in the ten-mile race a week later, I was about to catch her, but then she disappeared and defeated me.


  1. RB 530. 20 May 1982

The long strides1

Once I was running in Flushing Meadow Park in such a relaxed way. I thought that my strides were no more than forty inches, but they were actually fifty. Savyasachi was watching. Then, in order to prove it to the others on the road crew, again I started running in a relaxed way. They all saw that my strides were actually fifty inches.


  1. RB 531. 20 May 1982

Too cold!1

This morning around six-thirty I was doing interval work. At one point I had stopped running at the end of my block and I was walking. The German lady who lives nearby came up to me, grabbed my shoulder with her left hand and massaged my arm down to my elbow. Then she shook hands with me — her left hand and my left hand. She said, "Too cold, too cold!"

Then she said, "You have two dogs."

I said, "Yes."

She said, "Good, very good."

I asked her, "What is your dog's name?"

She said, "Vila."

This lady is always walking her dog. So its name is Vila, like the tennis champion Vilas.


  1. RB 532. 27 May 1982

The jogging policeman1

This morning I ran four miles and then walked one mile. I wanted to do seven miles, but I didn't have the time.

When I was coming back from my run around four-thirty, at the thousand-metre mark what did I see? A policeman jogging. He had no car and he was not running to catch any thief. He had a radio with earphones and he was in his police uniform. He was a real policeman, with a badge and a gun. He was not someone joking or pretending.

As soon as I saw him, I smiled at him. Then he said to me either, "Sri" or "Shrai" — I could not hear very well — "Good morning!"

When I said to him, "Sir, good morning," he stopped and shook hands with me. He was very fat and very tall at the same time.

This was the first time I had seen a policeman jogging. He was going very, very slowly. What he was doing jogging at that hour, God alone knows.


  1. RB 533. 3 June 1982

My coach1

My coach is Pahar. He is so good. I always tell him how fast I want to run, and then he runs with me and keeps the pace. Every 100 metres he adjusts the pace and it is always very close.


  1. RB 534. 5 June 1982

The show-off1

One day Kalatit and Pahar ran ahead of me. They wanted to run ten miles. Pahar said Kalatit was showing off. On that day Pahar didn't want to show off. But Kalatit kept going ahead.


  1. RB 535. 5 June 1982

The San Francisco Marathon1

I ran ten and a half miles before the San Francisco Marathon started. Then I was in the car while Gayatri and others started running the actual race. I watched them run for several miles. Then I ran six and a half miles in the marathon.

At the seventeen-mile point, Sharon said to me, "Gayatri is coming up behind you."

I said, "Let me enter into the car. Take me at least two miles ahead of her."

So Sharon took me about two miles in the car, but she couldn't go any farther because of the beach. Then I started running very peacefully. After that, I saw Gangadhar running in the other direction. Then I saw Gayatri coming from a different direction and she was shouting to Gangadhar.


  1. RB 536. 11 June 1982

Is your heart all right?1

After about four or five miles, I was breathing heavily as usual. A middle-aged man said to me, "Did you have a checkup with your doctor for your chest? Is your heart all right?"

I said, "Yes, yes!"

Then I said to myself, "O God, I am not going to run with the runners. I don't want to show people how tired I am." From then on I ran on the left side of the street. Most of the runners were running on the right side. There were still some runners on the left side, but very few in comparison.

There were many people who were breathing louder than I was. In the Athens Marathon that I ran a few years ago, there was one person breathing so heavily that you could hear him a hundred meters away.

After about seven or eight miles, I saw a man lying down by the side of the road. Two people were helping him. Then the ambulance came.


  1. RB 537. 11 June 1982

Bad memories1

As I passed one point in the marathon, I remembered that at that same place two years ago I had got cramps. At that time I was practically lying down on the street while Pradhan and Nirvik were massaging me. After they massaged me, I could barely walk for three or four miles. I was absolutely miserable.

Before the marathon that year, a Chinese doctor had given a talk about how he had cured so many patients who had come to him. In spite of my cramps this doctor was two or three miles behind me.

This time nothing happened — no cramps or anything. I was absolutely flying. This is the difference between two years ago and now!


  1. RB 538. 11 June 1982

Brakes1

At one point during the marathon I saw a man who was in such pain and agony that he was walking. When you get cramps, you forget even your parents' names. When you use the car brake, you don't feel the car's pain. But when cramps put on the brakes, you feel the pain in your entire body.


  1. RB 539. 11 June 1982

Two Indians1

While I was running, six or seven people recognised me. Two or three stopped and shook hands with me.

Just before the twelve-mile point, there was an Indian ahead of me. He turned around and shouted, "Are you an Indian?"

I said, "Yes."

Then the man he was running with, an American, said, "He is the big boss."

That Indian lives only three houses away from Sharon. She knows him.


  1. RB 540. 11 June 1982

11 June 19821

While running the marathon, Chetana and Chandika were talking and smiling the whole time. They were not only running a marathon, they were enjoying a marathon talk.


  1. RB 541. 11 June 1982

Thanking God1

I thank God from the bottom of my heart when I see some people's strides. During the California race I was watching the strides of an old man. I said, "God, I should thank You for one thing: that I don't have that kind of stride."

There was one old man whose style I will never forget. His right leg had one kind of position, his left leg another, and his shoulder had a completely different position. O God, how did he run? His entire body was twisted in three different places.


  1. RB 542. 11 June 1982

Nice to see you this morning!1

This morning around six-thirty I was walking down the 150th Street hill after running seven miles. At the bottom of the hill there was a big bus stopped at a red light. Behind the bus was a car with two very tall and stout black men in it. The driver had a beard and moustache. When I was about to go back up the hill, the driver got out of the car and took two steps towards me. "How nice to see you this morning!" he said.

I didn't know what to say. So I smiled at him soulfully. Then he went back into his car.


  1. RB 543. 11 June 1982

Look, Sri Chinmoy is running!1

Yesterday at about five-fifteen in the morning I was running near my two-and-a-half-mile point on Union Turnpike. A young man was talking on the phone in a telephone booth as I passed by. All of a sudden he started screaming, "Look, look! Sri Chinmoy is running!" He was so excited. He was telling the person he was talking to on the phone that he was seeing me run by.

I stopped and gave the young man a smile. He was in the seventh heaven of delight. He was tall and clean-shaven, with curly hair, and he had a pack on his back.

These people who greet me in the morning are in some ways my first-class disciples. They get up early in the morning, and they are so happy to see me.


  1. RB 544. 11 June 1982

Two crazies1

The other day when I was running up the 150th Street Hill, a lady on the street caught me. She stopped me and asked, "Can I speak to you?"

I called Databir and he came running. I told him, "Please talk to her." So Databir talked to her. Later, he said she was crazy. But she didn't seem to me to be crazy. Perhaps she also thought that Databir was crazy.


  1. RB 545. 11 June 1982