Wednesday, July 13th, 2016
What the Gazette Said
In yesterday's "Iowa Gazette" under the "Faith and Values" section, we have an article.
"Canadian monk walks across U.S. to spread the message of simple living" by Madison Arnold:
On Monday morning, a driver called the police after spotting Bhaktimarga Swami, dressed in his traditional orange garments, as he walked along the highway. The man thought the monk was an escaped convict.
And more than once, people, spotting him coming from a distance, mistake him at first for an orange traffic cone, Bhaktimarga said.
Bhaktimarga Swami, a monk from Ontario, Canada, is walking from New York City to San Francisco, mostly along the Lincoln Highway, in an effort to encourage people to embrace a lifestyle of "simple living and high thinking." He stopped Monday in Iowa City.
"I'm trying to say, ‘You know, folks, let's slow-down a little bit. Let's take a little time to connect with the world around us,’ the Swami said. ‘My message is universal. It's non-denominational and, it's trying to encourage people to realize their inner potential.’”
Walking out in the open is a very public way to deliver this message and as he believes cars are a sign of consumer culture, he wants to reject that mentality. Swami said spiritual, long walks are a tradition dating back to the origins of Buddhism and beyond. He also has completed walks across Ireland and Israel, and four across Canada. His goal is to travel about 20 miles per day and he usually camps at night, unless a temple or resident offers him a place to stay indoors. People generally interact with him, especially after they learn what he's doing, Bhaktimarga said. The Swami said he expects to walk another month before taking a break and finishing the final leg of his walk next year.
May the Source be with you!