As the monk advances in practice, feelings of hardship decrease and he is suffused with energy and sustained by joy. The marathon monk has become one with the mountain, flying along a path that is free of obstruction. The joy of practice has been discovered and all things are made new each day. Awakened to the Supreme, one marathon monk described his gratitude thus:

"Gratitude for the teachings of the enlightened ones,
gratitude for the wonders of nature,
gratitude for the charity of human beings,
gratitude for the opportunity to practice ... "

~ from THE MARATHON MONKS OF MOUNT HIEI by John Stevens
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