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A Meditation On The Move

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Julia ChiThe moment I could walk in this incarnation, I am told that I ran… I was nine months old and the story goes that I would lean forward and run along on my tippy toes…
And fifty six years on I am still opening the front door each morning, leaning forward to see the sight of a brand new day, the sun rising over the hills of Spain where I have been living for the past couple of months and then running out on my tippy toes to do what I was born to do…

Run and run and find out how to stay in each step, to truly trust that by staying in the step that I am in, that the next will take care of itself and the next and the next…

I was six years old when I first felt that I wanted to stretch myself, to see if I could win.
It was school sports day…
I even wrote to God in the condensation on my bedroom window! ‘Please let me win the running race…’
I am not sure if I won that day or not… I had strong competition in the form of Katie Prentice, another fast runner!
But over the years running has become a place of the ultimate ‘meditation on the move’ for me, and a place to discover how to win my own race…

Because I came into this world with fast running ability, it meant that the challenge to stay still, to truly learn to stay in the step, to truly go with the flow, to genuinely have no attachment to an outcome has been challenged to the max!

The very act of running can lend itself to a meditative state, breathing deeply massages the hara (area just below the tummy button – the energy centre) and running from the energy centre of our body, and running tall, opening the heart as we run, unfurling the angel wings on our back can clear the system and mean that we are able to fly on the land, and yet become still.
I find the connection with nature, the breath, the rhythm of the run allows for the mind to still and it is possible to drop into the gap between thoughts and know who I am…
Recently we have been staying in the Alpujarra mountains, and there is no question who is boss…!

The altitude, the steep climbs, the pinnacle shining in the suns rays way off… The fragility of the human condition is evident and the strength of the enduring spirit, that is never daunted by a steep climb or thin air… Or any of life’s challenges.
I am reminded of the still place within that never changes…
I recognise that running is not for everyone, but engaging in what we love, what we feel drawn to, what we feel born to do can become the ultimate tantric practice… Experiencing life, not fearing or rejecting any aspect… Instead finding freedom through living and using our bodies as an instrument of transformation to become ourselves completely so that in the end through doing what we love, we find there is nothing to do!

 

 

I have been running all of my life – it feels I was born to run. In the running step I experienced freedom and my true expression. I came to see that I needed to ‘get out of the way of myself’ and let my energy flow through the running step; allow it to express itself in the dance and the motion of running.  I ran for England and GB for some years. My first international was in 1979, a three mile cross country race; and I continued to run at international level until 1993. Two of my best results were first place in the Dublin City Marathon in 1985 and 7th place woman, 3rd British woman in the 1986 London Marathon in a time of 2.36.31, which gained me selection for the Commonwealth Games.

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