Ayya Khema...okay I have miraculous story about her. I actually and truly lost 30 pounds of weight, while running every day on an elliptical machine listening to her talks repeatedly on my computer. Every day. Ayya Khema and the machine.
Talks such as this:
"try to move your arm, try to move your leg...note what makes the limb move. What made it move? The body is the servant, the mind is the master, the master directs the servant... the awareness and clear comprehension of this is essential, to watch the mind and what is is doing, what action it is directing."
"Wash dishes, while washing dishes, no thought, other than washing the dish, just note the movement of the hand, try it, it's very revealing!"
So, I would run on that machine, running through the pain and through the sweat, just hearing Ayya Khema's words, and remembering that I can keep running, mind is the master of the body, watch the mind, and have awareness of what it is trying to do with the body! The mind was always making excuses. But, when pain came, or exhaustion came, I stopped the mind and just let the body keep moving. 30 pounds of weight gone in a matter of months with only a simple elliptical machine and Ayya Khema's slow calm talks playing while I was running fast. Quite different than the usual strategy of listening to some fast paced rock/pop/dance music while doing excercise. I could almost enter samadhi while running to Ayya Khema talks. Basically she takes it down the core, where you are not afraid of pain, not afraid of dying. Many times, I would get on the machine, and vow, I will do this much because this is only a body, this is not me, there is no me, and if this body dies here on the machine, so be it. She is really inspirational, and obviously "I" am still alive and 30 pounds lighter with a good BMI so the teachings did not kill me, but helped me to get to the point of fitness where I can easily sit and meditate without pain, do complicated yoga and everything else. I have a huge gratitude to the late Ayya Khema, for her willingness to teach. She is gone from that form, but the teachings live on and the talks are online... metta and merits to her^1000....