New Guinness Record: 72,000 burning candles

72,000-Burning-Candles-Guinness-World_Record-smNew York – 27 August 2016. 61-year-old Guinness world record champion Ashrita Furman set a world record in the borough Queens of New York, by lighting 72,000 candles to burn simultaneously on a huge birthday cake. A team of 70 helpers from all over the world spent several hours counting and inserting the thousands of colourful birthday candles in a cake spanning 45 by 10 feet (13.5 by 3 meters). Then the candles were lit in a space of just two minutes. Ashrita, manager of a New York health food store, dedicated the new Guinness Record as an expression of gratitude to Sri Chinmoy (1931-2007), stating: “Our teacher came from India to offer us the light of meditation. With tremendous gratitude we are honouring what would be his 85th birthday with light of 72,000 candles.” Ashrita set 622 Guinness world records in his lifetime – more than any other Guinness figure. His 72,000-candle event will become his 207th currently standing record. The audience of 1000 friends and supporters of Sri Chinmoy’s lifetime of work for peace sang the traditional “Happy Birthday” song. After the candles were extinguished, many members of the audience enjoyed a piece of cake. Ashrita had been waiting to attempt the new record after his previous record of 48,000 candles was upset by a team who lit 50,000 candles in April, 2016. (Photos: Jowan Gauthier)


Successful Impossibility Challenger in Portugal

Last weekend another edition of the International Impossibility Challenger Games took place in the Sports Stadium of Leiria, Portugal, organized by the Sri Chinmoy Centre Portugal with the help of friends from all over Europe. Many personal and World records have been established. Here are some of them:Radek

The Czech Republic has strong men! One of them showed his capacities in Leiria and astonished the audience. Radek Rosa made three personal records. First he pulled a bus filled with  17 people for 40m with only his body power in just 57.75 seconds. The total weight was 6243.5 kg. Secondly he pulled a truck filled with people with a total wight of 6155 kg for 20m in 36.26 seconds and last but not least he showed an amazing feast by pulling a huge tractor with 9.5 t for 20m in only 1 min and 29.75 seconds!


Vaibhava Jewgenij Kuschnow from Austria set a new World Record which is at the same time a Guinness World Record attempt by performing 10 consecutive shots hitting the target, achieving 64 points, while balancing on a slack line. The slack line was stretched between two cars in a hight of 0.93m and the target was 18 m away. But that was not enough. For his second World Record Vaibhava combined climbing and inline skating! He successfully climed up a climbing wall with inline skates on 3 different UIAA routes. He was successful on his first attempts. He climbed level 5 in 41.6 seconds, level 6 in 48.4 seconds and level 7- in 55.63 seconds! In an interview on Saturday Vaibhava said that he uses positive visualisation and meditation to prepare for his records.


Charuhasi Eckhard Schröder is a banker from Germany. He is also a lover of spiritual poetry and performed a stunning World Record by reciting 3148 poems (!) by memory during a period of 34 hours. All of the recited poems were written by the accomplished poet Sri Chinmoy. (I am trying to learn Sri Chinmoy’s special slection of 207 poems and am now at only 33 poems by heart, so I can really appreciate this record! – editorial note).


Albert Jamie Walter is already the second generation of Impossibility Challenger participants. Already his father Ruedi participated in the event in the 1980’s. They both specialized in the tearing of telephone directories. Albert has successfully attempted a new World Record: he was able to tear apart a huge Munich telephone directory of 1551 pages with his bare hands in only 9,38 seconds!


Laughing is healthy. So the Escola do Riso yoga club from Coimbra tried to get together the largest Laughter Yoga Class which they achieved with 78 participants, which is a new World Record. They established a second World Record by holding the longest Laughter Yoga class for 2 hours and 53minutes with a total of 7 participants.

Hugo Rito from Portugal tried to establish a new personal record in retro-running. Unfortunately the temperatures in the stadium were quite low (only 3 degree) and he had to stop after achieving a half-maration in 2:51:06 hours.

The stadium of Leiria is quite impressive, with a capacity of about 29.000 seats, a height of over 30 meters and a beautiful view to the historic castle. Núcleo de Espeleologi a de Leiria made use of the height of the stadium. The group achieved 168 climbs (27m each) on ropes  of 4536 m up and 4536 m down and reached a total distance of 9072 m.

Juventude Vidigalense from Portugal organized the largest 400 m relay and established a new World Record. A total of 106 tall, small, young, old, fast and slow but fully inspired runners participated with a time of 2:40:12 h.


Jorge Cardinali is a Portuguese circus artist. He wanted to test his patience in this record and had three china plates spinning on grounded sticks for a total of 4:13:34 hours simultaneously. With this he achieved a new World Record.


Peace and harmony are two qualities we all would like to see spread around the globe. Nuno Figueiredo organized a drawing exhibition with 7095 A4 drawings that were exhibited in the corridors of the stadium. Over 50 schools have participated in this nationwide Portuguese event. The creativity and love the over 7000 children put to paper was moving and inspiring for all visitors! The exhibition can still be seen for the next three weeks.


Carlos Manuel Viera is a fire fighter from Leiria and a very enduring cyclist. He set a new World Records cycling 15:13:55 h on rollers on top of a fire truck in the Leiria Stadium. This is a true testimonial for stamina, patience and self-transcendence!

Photos by Aparajita

The miracle of lifting 7000 pounds with one arm


Many of us remember the cold January New York evening, the structure was complete and Sri Chinmoy would not only have to raise the sixty-eight solid 100-pound plate weights, but also the supporting truss and bar, which themselves weighed an additional two hundred pounds. At 1.25 a.m., January 30, 1987, on his 3rd attempt, Sri Chinmoy lifted 7,063¾ pounds. Of the five attempts (1.03 a.m., 1.13 a.m., 1.25 a.m., 1.37 a.m. and 1.50 a.m.) three were completely successful – a combined weight of over 10 tons, held aloft by one human arm and an unfathomable will. Jim Smith, from the British Amateur Weightlifters Association, who had been following Sri Chinmoy’s progress since he began, put it simply: “Sri Chinmoy is causing us to throw all our current beliefs in physics out the window. Sri Chinmoy is wrecking what we’ve always regarded as normal laws. Sri Chinmoy is rewriting the physiology books all over again!” (This and many more infos on Sri Chinmoy’s life you can read on the new website Sri Chinmoy Reflections). Klick on the picture to watch it in full size.