January 14, 2009

Excerpt from Running & Being

“Every mile I run is my first. Every hour on the road a new beginning. Every day I put on my running clothes, I am born again. Seeing things as if for the first time, seeing the familiar as unfamiliar, the common as uncommon. Doing what Goethe said was the hardest thing of all, seeing with my own eyes that which is spread before me. Bringing to that running, that play, the attitude of the child, the perception of a poet. Being a beginner with a beginner’s mind, a beginner’s heart, a beginner’s body.

“There’s no other way to run, no other way to live. Otherwise my runs become dull, uninspired interludes. The running becomes routine, becomes part of the humdrum apathy and indifference which the poet John Hall Wheelock called a shield between us and reality. It becomes a chore, a habit. And habit kills awareness and separates us from ourselves.”

From Running & Being: The Total Experience by Dr George Sheehan (1978)

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