Event Calendar

A pop-up exhibition of Sri Chinmoy’s weightlifting equipment will open in Tribeca from April 15th to May 2nd.

Held at 18 Jay Street between Greenwich Street and Hudson, this gallery of Sri Chinmoy’s remarkable, custom-made apparatuses showcases the tremendous dedication he placed on training. Most of the machines were based on gym equipment but made from scratch to be able to withstand the pressures of his workouts.

Bench press racks with cradles that could support the weight and impact of 400 lb dumbbells, standing military-press racks that could support the crash of two 650 lb dumbbells, a standing calf machine with over 20 one hundred pound plates and wrist curl dumbbells weighing nearly 300 pounds form the core of this exhibit.

Hard to imagine? Video displays placed throughout the exhibit feature Sri Chinmoy using these machines during his demonstrations and day-to-day workouts.

The museum will be open daily from noon to 6pm.

Thursday April 21: World’s Strongest Man Hugo Girard. Lecture. Inner and Outer Power. For athletes, medical professionals and trainers. Free. 7-9 pm Kindly RSVP to sanjay@illumine.com

Saturday April 23: Three-time Mr. Olympia Frank Zane. Rare NYC appearance and book signing. 3-5 pm.

Sunday April 24: Screening of multiple award winning short documentary on spirituality, surfing and life in NYC. Ocean Monk. Plus other surf shorts. 5:30 pm. Free.

Monday April 25: Reel of Sri Chinmoy’s most unusual lifts (sumo wrestlers, celebrities, airplanes and pumpkins!) 5:30-6:00 pm. Free.

Monday April 25: Part I of Power of Silence workshop. Featuring Holder of Most Guinness World Records, Ashrita Furman. Admission is FREE, but seating is limited and reservations are required.  Please call 212-380-8153 to reserve your seat.

Tuesday April 26: Screening of Utpal Marshall’s short film on Sri Chinmoy’s storied running history. 5:30-6:00 pm. Free.

Tuesday April 26: Part II of Power of Silence featuring women’s ultramarathoning legend Suprabha Beckjord. We all have unlimited potential and capacities within us — learn how you can access and develop them with simple meditation techniques.

Thursday April 28: Screening of multiple award winning short documentary on spirituality, surfing and life in NYC. Ocean Monk. 5:30 pm. Free.

Thursday April 28: Part III of Power of Silence:  peace of mind, which leads to inner strength; poise, within a busy world and lifestyle; power unleashed from hidden inner potential. Free admission.

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Screenings

Challenging Impossibility will screen at the following times:

Friday, April 22, 6:30 pm
Wednesday, April 27, 3:45 pm
Friday, April 29, 3:30 pm

(Chelsea Clearview Cinemas. 260 West 23rd Street, between 7th and 8th Avenues)

 

Sunday, May 1, 4:00 pm

(Tribeca Cinemas, 54 Varick Street, below Canal Street, at Laight Street)

 

Tickets can be purchased at the Tribeca Website. Single film tickets go on sale the 12th of April.

Sri Chinmoy lifts 200 pounds

Sri Chinmoy began lifting dumbbells in a standing position, pushing them up from cradles in a custom machine.

Though Sri Chinmoy achieves great height with these lifts, the ease with which he accomplishes this is deceptive. In this clip, he is supporting more than his body weight with just one arm, and at the age of 54 years.

800 Pound Lift

Sri Chinmoy lifts 800 pounds overhead on a partial military press machine. Note that Sri Chinmoy is following strongman standards in lifting the weight only enough so that a piece of paper may theoretically be pulled from underneath it.

As the weight progressed, the amount of distance Sri Chinmoy could displace it, obviously would decrease. In this clip, pay close attention to the separation of the platform from the machine. You may need to watch the clip several times. The platform moves up at the peak of Sri Chinmoy’s expression (scream) of exertion.

Sri Chinmoy meets the World’s Strongest Men

In the summer of 2007, Sri Chinmoy traveled to Philadelphia to lift a selection of competitors in the World’s Strongest Man competition. The attached clip is of his remarks and Legendary Bodybuilder Bill Pearl’s reflections on Sri Chinmoy’s age.

Sri Chinmoy lifts some of the World's Strongest Man competitors

Sri Chinmoy poses with the contests he just lifted.

Sri Chinmoy’s Training and Mental Preparation

Sri Chinmoy trained for 4 to 6 hours each day. He would begin at 2 or 3 in the morning with up to 90 minutes of stretching. He would then follow a prescribed routine with his custom-made weight machines after which he would move on to heavier dumbbell and plate weight lifts. Those dumbbell and plate lifts were far heavier in many cases than his training and warm-up weights.

Every day he tried to transcend a previous achievement.

The journalist Scott Jennings asked, “How do you mentally prepare yourself to lift a weight that is much heavier than your training weight?”

Sri Chinmoy answered, “You have to realise that the physical world is not the only world. The mental world is as real as the physical world. If you are having difficulties at a particular place, then you can go to another place. Who knows, that place may be more inspiring and encouraging. If you don’t get inspiration to practise running on the running machine, then you can go outside where there are beautiful trees and fresh air. Then, once you get inspiration and joy from the outer world, from nature’s beauty, you may be more inspired to practise on the running machine. Similarly, if you are not getting enough joy from your training on the physical plane, then you can enter into the inner world and meditate. On the mental plane first you imagine that you are lifting weights beyond your physical capacity. Then you can bring that mental capacity to the physical plane and turn your imagination into reality.”

Jim Smith, long-time Registrar of the British Amateur Weightlifting Association, remarked to Sri Chinmoy, “You’re obviously using all your previous spiritual training.”

Sri Chinmoy commented, “Previously I used to say 99 per cent, but now I give 100 per cent credit to my Inner Pilot, who is my source of inspiration and aspiration. Before each lift I concentrate, pray and meditate for at least three or four minutes. I do one heavy lift, and then again I meditate and invoke God’s Blessings and Protection. After doing one lift, they advise you to do the next lift as soon as possible—within a few seconds. They say that for a few moments the blood in your arm is still circulating rapidly. I don’t like that theory since, in my case, I depend on Grace from Above. So I wait at least three minutes or more between each lift when I am working with heavy weights. I pray and meditate and concentrate, and when I feel that I am inwardly energised, I try to lift. Before that I do not do it because I feel I owe everything to my Source, which is inner guidance. So I have to first enter into my Source for inspiration, aspiration, guidance and protection.

“Sometimes there is no logic behind my performances. But again, inner inspiration is such that it does not correspond to outer reasoning. Many, many things I have done which my physical mind cannot believe. When I look at the weight, I am frightened to death. But then again, when I concentrate, I am not afraid of it. When I am one with it, I act like a hero. When I am not one with it, when my concentration or my oneness with the weight is not there, then I am actually frightened. But when I try to go beyond the mind, then these barriers do not exist. The mind feels that you have to go from one to two. But why go from one to two if there is something called Grace? Why not go from one to ten? Fortunately, I have succeeded many times with this approach.”

Sri Chinmoy and Pope John Paul II

Sri Chinmoy had a deep appreciation for Pope John Paul II and met him on several occasions.

The following clip shows the Pope blessing the opening ceremony of the World Harmony Run, a sports and peace event founded by Sri Chinmoy which includes hundreds of thousands of children worldwide.

“The Pope also has two aspects: that of a father and that of a grandfather,” said Sri Chinmoy. “According to me, he is not only the Holy Father, but also the Holy Grandfather. A father believes in justice. If his children do something wrong, the father will be upset, and he may take action. But the grandfather is all forgiveness for his grandchildren. In his eye, the grandchildren cannot do anything wrong. In this respect, the Pope is like a grandfather.”

Sri Chinmoy and Mother Teresa

Sri Chinmoy and Mother Teresa cherished a deep bond and spoke by phone often. In fact, Sri Chinmoy was one of the last people she spoke with by phone before her passing. “In Mother Teresa I find two aspects: the mother and the sister,” said Sri Chinmoy. “One moment she is the mother of compassion; the next moment she is the sister of affection. When I see her and talk to her, she blesses me as a mother blesses her child, and again she shows me the utmost sisterly affection.”

My sisters and brothers of the world,
Are we so blind that we cannot see
God’s own Autograph
On Mother Teresa’s forehead?
Mother,
The sorrowful earth-planet
Has a special treasure-home,
And that home
Is your compassion-heart.
– Sri Chinmoy

The following clip is of Sri Chinmoy and Mother Teresa in Rome where Sri Chinmoy presents Mother Teresa with the U Thant Peace Award and the Lifting Up the World with a Oneness-Heart medallion.