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Transforming Through Marathons, Meditation and Solo Retreats with Kenzo An

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Kenzo An is a successful marathon runner, a long-time meditator, and a thriving salesman in the Fintech industry. He’s also a regular contributor here at Aboutmeditation.com.

In this episode of the One Mind Podcast, we unpack the core themes from some of Kenzo An’s most recent blog posts including:

  • The transforming power of meditation.
  • How solo retreats (and spiritual practice in general) offer you perspective in your darkest nights.
  • The surprising freedom and strength we can find when we embrace a deeper form of renunciation.

Here are some quotes from the respective articles that we unpack in the podcast.

It’s interesting to look closer at what’s actually motivating us to meditate. Whether we desire a clearer mind, a wider heart, or a transcendence of self; we feel called towards some deeper sense of wholeness.

At this time, I decided I wanted all aspects of my life to transform – including my body. I had been a long distance runner for 10+ years as part of my spiritual practice.

Now in the dark of the night and my dissolved dream, I had no idea what was supposed to happen next. I was alone with myself in tenderness and openness.  Losing is good for the soul were the words that came to me. I suddenly felt more intimate with the calling towards wholeness I experience in meditation. While winning in life is exciting and invigorating, losing is actually what draws us closer to ourselves. When we lose, we can win new ground in our soul to stand on.

I concluded that if I was going to do any truly fresh thinking, it was essential to have more space inside me. I permitted myself for that first day (of five) to let go of the whole world.

Near the end of that day, I struck gold as I was meditating. What became crystal clear was that I would never have anything of real value to offer the world if I continued to deny my love for God.

By being resolute that this was no longer an option, my awareness has been liberated to flow into other areas that beckon my consciousness. Most importantly: my love for God. I believe this inner irrigation is the essence of the time immemorial spiritual practice of renunciation.

In the context of giving up bad habits, I don’t think it works to say “no” to something we typically enjoy unless it’s in service of something more profound that we’re saying “yes” to. What we are saying “yes” to needs to be big and important to us. In this light, it is a joy to not drink or smoke because I’m reaffirming in my being that I am committed to my higher potential. It is so much more than just making healthier choices for my body. It is about tapping into my resolve for a greater life.

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