OM074 - Transformation through Marathons, Meditation and Solo Retreats with Kenzo An

Kenzo An is a successful marathon runner, long-time meditator, and thriving vendor in the Fintech industry. He is also a regular contributor to

In this episode of the One Mind Podcast, we cover some of the key topics from Kenzo An’s latest blog posts, including:

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

Here are some quotes from relevant articles we cover on the podcast.

It is interesting to take a closer look at what motivates us to meditate. Whether we want a clearer mind, a larger heart, or self-transcendence; we call ourselves to a deeper sense of wholeness.

At that time, I decided that I wanted to change all areas of my life, including my body. I have been a long distance runner for 10+ years as part of my spiritual practice.

Now in the dark of night and in my dissolved sleep, I had no idea what was going to happen next. I was alone with myself in politeness and openness. Losing is good for the soul were the words that came to me. I suddenly felt closer to the call to wholeness I experienced in meditation. While winning in life is exciting and invigorating, losing is actually what brings us closer to ourselves. When we lose, we can gain new ground to stand on in our spirit.

I came to the conclusion that if I wanted to engage in any truly fresh thinking, I needed to have more room inside. The first day (five days) I allowed myself to let go of the whole world.

Towards the end of that day I struck gold while meditating. It became clear that if I continued to deny my love for God, I would never have real value to offer the world.

Deciding that this was no longer an option, my awareness was freed to flow into other areas that called upon my consciousness. Most importantly: my love for God. I believe this inner watering is the essence of the ancient spiritual practice of renunciation.

In the context of breaking bad habits, I think saying no to something we usually enjoy doesn’t work unless it serves something deeper that we say yes to. What we say “yes” should be big and important to us. In this sense, not drinking or smoking is bliss because I am affirming that I am true to my higher potential in my being. It’s about more than just making healthier choices for my body. It taps into my determination for a greater life.

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