Paradise on earth, where is it, have you ever thought about it? Well,
you may think it is in 5-star-hotel at the beach in a most beautiful
place somewhere in Asia, with comfortable 2-bed-rooms, 3-meals-a-day-
buffet, nice functions during the morning and funny play-evenings,
and a lot of opportunity to go shopping, sight-seeing, sports or just
relaxation at the beach.
This sounds really good, however, paradise on earth is somewhere
else – at least for me and for many who have been there.
Paradise is in New York – Queens, Flushing Meadow Corona Park,
between a nice lake and a crowded highway, right under the entry lane
of La Guardia Airport, in a camp where a loud generator provides
Here you find (at least once or twice a year) all facilities you
need. Dormitories with wooden beds in big tents, showers in wooden
huts, and a washroom directly under the sky, two big kitchens and
Nights can be freezing cold here, but nobody spends a long time in
his bed anyway – because those who come here do not come for
enjoyment, they come to transcend themselves on a 1-mile-track during
the 10 or 6-day-self-transcendence-race.
The outer conditions may seem rude or unpleasant, and when the
weather is stormy and rainy it can be quite uncomfortable. However,
then you can learn, how much you are able to conquer and have the
great experience that much more is possible than you ever thought.
Brave runners take lap after lap, no matter which outer conditions
they have to face, brave helpers are there to support them with all
they need in many different ways. Both of them get very special
lessons here, which you can enjoy the fullest if you stay here
Paradise is like life, there are many ups and downs, and after the
first day you can see the first runners struggling. Tears and smiles
are very close in paradise, as are pain and joy.
I am always impressed by the endurance of each and every hero-runner
out here. Lap after lap they continue their race, sometimes fast,
sometimes slower, sometimes very slow.
Pain and struggle – and I call it paradise? You wonder. Well,
inwardly the sun is shining brightly here, Peace reigns Supreme in
all hearts, in spite of the outer noise. Self-transcendence at its
best on the side of the runners, self-giving at its best on the side
of the helpers. Soon you feel delighted, even if you have to struggle
or even during minor activities like squeezing juice or doing
Oneness in good times and bad, cheerfulness all around in spite of
some difficulties and light, light – everywhere you can feel it.
I always shed tears of joy and gratitude when I am here, and I was
lucky this year to visit paradise again for the 3rd time. No other
place ever offered me so many deep experiences, so many friends, so
many opportunities to grow, so many challenges, so many ways to help
and to learn, so many tears and so many smiles….
There may be many comfortable places on earth, but if I had to
choose, I would always choose to be in this camp again.
You may not agree – but ask those who have been on multi-day-races,
they probably will…..
Most most gratefully
Originally posted on Sri Chinmoy Inspiration Group