New book: A spiritual approach to swimming the English Channel
By Vasanti Niemz
For Adriano Passini from Brazil, with a longstanding love for triathlons and warm water, the cold English Channel was something like a myth in his youth – fascinating, but impossible to achieve.
However, Adriano's life changed when he started to practice meditation. Inspired from within, and by his teacher Sri Chinmoy`s philosophy of inner and outer self-transcendence, he decided to take up the challenge of the Channel. In his new book The Challenge of the English Channel: A Spiritual Approach to the Mount Everest of Swimming, Adriano shares the joys and hardships of his two-year-journey of physical and spiritual preparation and reveals to the reader how, with sincere dedication, the power of the heart, and God`s Grace, seemingly impossible dreams can become a reality.
The English Channel is often called the Mount Everest of Open Water Swimming. There may be longer or more difficult swims, but the challenge of swimming the English Channel remains stupendous. Swimmers will have to brave not only the vastness of the sea and all the elements, but also face their inner demons and weaknesses. Cold water, currents, waves, fog, sudden weather changes, cargo ships, jellyfish, seeweed, swimming in the dark, increasing fatigue, doubt, fears and hours of solitude force the swimmer to dig deep to be able to reach the “Golden Shore.”
"This book is one of the best I have seen on the subject. It covers how to increase chances of success, what is out of the hands of the swimmer and what will likely contribute to failure. ... A most inspiring telling with great tips that are very readily applied to other sporting and life events....The attempt to capture the inner lessons, seeing everything as a practice session for the next life adventure, was remarkable in its sensibility and practically."
Adhiratha Keefe, fellow SCMT member and first United Nations staff member to swim the Channel solo in 1985.
Video: Interviewwith Adriano after his English Channel swim in 2013
Famous Channel quotes
"An English Channel swim will always be a battle of one small, lone swimmer against the savage vastness of the open sea." - Michael Read, MBC, King of the English Channel (1979 - 2005) with 33 EC solos, President of the CSA
"Nothing great is easy." - Famous quote by Captain Matthew Webb, first person to successfully swim the English Channel unassisted in 1875
"If you want to successfully swim across the English Channel – you have to leave any doubt on the beach." - Lewis Pugh, pioneer swimmer and ocean advocate
No equal." - Sri Chinmoy