A unique fitness program from a highly respected spiritual leader that blends physical and spiritual practice for everyone - regardless of age, spiritual background, or ability - to great benefits for both body and soul.
As a Tibetan lama and leader of Shambhala (an international community of 165 meditation centers), Sakyong Mipham has found physical activity to be essential for spiritual well-being. He's been trained in horsemanship and martial arts but has a special love for running. Here he incorporates his spiritual practice with running, presenting basic meditation instruction and fundamental principles he has developed. Even though both activities can be complicated, the lessons here are simple and designed to show how the melding of internal practice with physical movement can be used by anyone - regardless of age, spiritual background, or ability - to benefit body and soul.
While applying Buddhist ideas to running is not new, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche (Ruling Your World) provides a fresh twist by using Shambhala principles to improve the practice of running. The author, head of the worldwide Shambhala Buddhist organization and son of the late Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, investigates the relationship between running and meditation and how mindfulness can enhance the ability to run long distances. The book is organized around the "four dignities" of the Shambhala warriorship path tiger, lion, garuda (bird and human), and dragon, which represent different qualities applicable to both sport and mind training. Chapters address building a base, motivation, gentleness, dealing with pain, and intention. Trained since childhood in meditation, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche moved from running neophyte to seasoned marathoner using mindfulness to enhance his ability to finish long races. The writing is clear, the advice simple and direct, using examples from his own runs and competitions. Each section is followed by a contemplation practice, and meditation instruction is included.