The image of my late great-grandfather was in my mind as I practiced yoga this week. Wilbur McKenna, or “Mac” as his co-workers called him, was a railroader who drove steam, diesel, and electric locomotives for the Milwaukee Road through southern Montana and the surrounding states.
His constant companion, whether hauling passengers through mountain passes at three a.m. or freight through the grasslands at mid-day, was his fireman, the man who kept the boilers stoked and operating at enough pressure to keep the trains moving. That’s as clear and as basic an illustration of the precept of tapas as I can think of: Maintaining the energy needed to keep moving forward. Read more »