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3rd Bike For Dharma: Honor Ride In Support Of The Veterans

K. Arvind
05/17/2017

3rd Bike for Dharma: Honor Ride in Support of the Veterans

अयं बन्धुरयं नेति गणना लघुचेतसाम् |
ayam bandhu ayam na iti gananaa laghu chetasaam
उदारचरितानां तु वसुधैव कुटुम्बकम् ||
udaara charitaanaam tu vasudhaa eva kutumbakam
(महोपनिषद् ७१)
Petty minds see one as a relative and another as a stranger.
Lofty minds see the whole world as one family.
 
(Maha Upanishad 71 – part of this verse is inscribed in stone in India’s Parliament House)

Team Maruti, a team of bicycling enthusiasts consisting of volunteers and supporters of Bharathi Vidyashram and the Hindu Temple of New Hampshire, and their friends, will once again rally this year in support of the nation’s injured veterans as part of the Ride 2 Recovery Honor Ride on Saturday, June 3rd in Nashua, NH. Bharathi Vidyashram and the Temple invite you to join Team Maruti in this 3rd “Bike for Dharma” and make a difference in the lives of our healing heroes through your participation and support.

Honor Ride New Hampshire

Honor Rides are popular single-day, non-competitive cycling events held throughout the nation that let the public ride alongside the nation’s veteran heros. The rides are organized by Project Hero, an organization dedicated to making a difference in the lives of injured military veterans and first responders, by supporting community-based rehabilitation and recovery programs as well as medical and clinical research. Honor rides are being held in a dozen cities all over the country this year, including one in Nashua, NH, on Saturday, June 3rd, 2017.

The ride in Nashua, held in memory of Sgt. John W. Nash, a Vietnam veteran and a bike industry legend, will be flagged off from the  Holman Stadium located at 67 Amherst Street, Nashua, NH. Riders can choose to ride on one of three different routes going through Nashua and its neighboring towns. The 10 mile-route is relatively flat and will be well-suited to those who are new to or who are not regularly in touch with bicycling. The 30-mile and 50-mile routes will offer more challenges in terms of gradients and distance, and will be more satisfying to more experienced bicyclists. All routes will be clearly marked, and plenty of guidance is provided in the form of maps, cue sheets and downloadable GPS route files. In addition, volunteers and police officers will be posted at various intersections along the way, and SAG vehicles to fix repairs and help riders, will shuttle along the routes. Local sponsors of the Honor Ride include well-known names such as UnitedHealthcare, Bank of America, Coca Cola and Whole Foods Market.

Registration for the ride costs $85.  The registration fee includes free cycling socks, a finishing medal and well-stocked rest stops. SAG support, lunch and more. Children 10 and above are welcome to register and ride their own bike, while children under the age of 10 are welcome to participate on a tandem bike. Anyone 16 and under must be accompanied by an adult 18 and over.

Registration fees cover event-related expenses and help create awareness about the need for veteran services. Any additional donations that you can raise from the community to sponsor your ride will go directly to supporting Ride 2 Recovery’s veteran rehabilitation programs. Ride 2 Recovery is a 501(c) 3 corporation, and all donations are tax-deductible (additional details available in this FAQ).

Bicycling

Bicycling can be very inspiring, especially when you ride through beautiful bike routes and trails. It is not only a pleasurable activity, but also a great form of aerobic exercise that can burn quite a few calories (about 300 calories in an hour or 10 miles) and help you shed those excess pounds. The natural endorphins generated by the intense activity can contribute to stress reduction. Biking with friends and family can strengthen bonds. If you are lucky enough to be able to ride to work, then you can also whiz through traffic jams and also do your part to protect the environment for future generations! You can also obtain a feeling of achievement by riding in challenges such as the Hub On Wheels around Boston, and the Five Borough Bike Tour around New York City which attracts over 32000 cyclists.

Bicycling is easy to learn and doesn’t require a great investment. You can get started with a $250 bike available in Costco, though you may want to invest on a more expensive bicycle available in a bike store, if you plan to continue with this sport for longer. If you do not wish to buy a bike immediately, you can even rent a bike for this tour at Goodale’s Bike Shop in Nashua, NH (or check out your neighborhood bike store).

Keep the Wheel of Dharma Rolling

The Honor Ride New Hampshire provides us with an opportunity to express our gratitude, camaraderie, support and love for our brethren of all faiths serving in or retired from the Armed Forces, true to the Hindu dictum that the whole world is one family (“vasudhaiva kutumbakam” – वसुधैव कुटुंबकम्), and in line with “E Pluribus Unum”, the motto on the seal of the United States. The great teachers tell us that loving and serving others constitutes the essence of Dharma.  The great Sage Vyasa summarizes the wisdom distilled from the eighteen Puranas as “merit is helping others and sin is hurting others”:

अष्टाद पुराणेषु व्यासस्य वचनद्वयम् | ashtaadasha puraaneshu vyaasasya vachanadwayam
परोपकारपुण्याय पापाय परपीडनम् ||     paropakaarah punyaaya paapaaya parapeedanam

Sri Kanchi Paramacharya exhorts us that “on the day we have not rendered any public service, we have not gone anywhere near punya”.  Bhagavan Sri Satya Sai Baba teaches us that “Real paropakara is to act with faith and do meritorious acts to serve the Divine in others, without entertaining feelings of division and difference”. Bike for Dharma is an effort to keep the wheel of dharma rolling.

Bike for Dharma with Team Maruti

Team Maruti is named after Lord Hanuman, who symbolizes not only the athletic qualities of fearlessness, courage, strength, speed, wisdom, and control, but also health and healing. In the Ramayana, Lord Hanuman lifted and brought a mountain bearing the healing herb Sanjeevani to revive Sri Lakshmana who was fighting with Sri Rama to uphold Dharma. We invite you to Bike for Dharma with Team Maruti. Pictures from last year’s ride may be viewed at the following links: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

You can register for the ride at this link. When you register for the ride at the link below, please click on “Join an Existing Team” under “Team Registration” and join “Team Maruti.” If you are unable to join the ride, please consider supporting our wounded veterans by making a tax-deductible donation to 2017 Honor Ride New Hampshire on behalf of Team Maruti at this link.

 

“A human being is a part of the whole, called by us ‘Universe’, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest – a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. The striving to free oneself from this delusion is the one issue of true religion. Not to nourish the delusion but to try to overcome it is the way to reach the attainable measure of peace of mind”
(Albert Einstein, 1950).

(Dr. K. Arvind is an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. His varied interests include technology, writing, languages, spirituality, bollywood  and classical  Indian music, bicycling and community service).



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