“Running helps us considerably. Running is continuous motion. Because of our running, we feel that there is a goal — not only an outer goal but also an inner goal.” 1
Sri Chinmoy founded the Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team in 1977 as a service to the running community and to help promote spiritual growth through sports.
Over the years, the Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team has become the world's largest sponsor of ultra-distance running and a major organiser of road races, marathons, triathlons, multi-sport events, long-distance swimming events and Master's track-and-field meets. It has hosted several national championships, and numerous world records have been set in its races.
Members of the Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team have also excelled in different sporting events, such as running, cycling and swimming. This includes 45 crossings of the English Channel (the most by any one team.) Dipali Cunningham from Australia set a new women's world road record for six day road running with 513 miles. Ashprihanal Aalto from Finland holds the record for the 3100 Mile race - 40 days 9 hours.
“Self-transcendence gives us joy in boundless measure. When we transcend ourselves, we do not compete with others. We do not compete with the rest of the world, but at every moment we compete with ourselves.”2
Sri Chinmoy believed that sports and spirituality went hand in hand. Events hosted by the Marathon Team seek to create an opportunity for participants to pursue the goal of self-transcendence - seeking to go beyond our limitations and gaining satisfaction from furthering our own capacities.
The Sri Chinmoy Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race is the longest race promoted by the Marathon Team. Held every year since 1997 in Jamaica, Queens, New York - it has been described by the New York Times as the "Everest of Distance Running" The race lasts up to 52 days, giving competitors a daily target of 60 miles per day.
Sri Chinmoy, Sri Chinmoy answers, part 28, Agni Press, 2000↩︎
Sri Chinmoy, The oneness of the Eastern heart and the Western mind, part 3, Agni Press, 2004↩︎