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The man who has walked and still is walking, the Peak District

Britain, Europe and the World; he has no equal.

John Merrill 

 Walk Guides

"Hiking the sacred paths and trails of the world for others to follow".

"The miracle of life is not to fly in the air, or walk-on the water, but to walk on the earth"- Chinese saying.

"For every mile that you walk, you extend your life by 21 mins."

photo - John Merrill on the summit of Stake Pass, on the Cumbria Way - May 2022.



Over the years I have been ridiculed for my walking skills. I am afraid this is pure ignorance. I do not fit in any pigeon hole and nor does anyone else. We are all unique and the result of many lifetime’s of experience. My style of walking is born out of several lifetimes of experience. I don’t rest, simply walk for hours on end with a heavy load. I wear basic simple clothes. I don’t drink or carry any liquid. I am never tired and have never said, “I can’t go any further.” I generally have 8 or 9 hours sleep a night and get up and do it all over again without any aches or pains. Any pain I get I tell it to go away, and it just melts immediately away. Why?……. for the following reasons.

I have been past life regressed several times. We all carry an imprint of our previous lives which makes us who we are. In 650AD I was bedouin in the desert with a herd of 300 goats and a harem of women. This is why today I can walk in high temperatures and carry no water. The bedouin don’t carry water, they drink at breakfast and set off across the desert for 8 or more hours to the next water hole, and then drink. I regularly carry no water and don’t drink for 12 hours and I find this no hardship. On walking from Mexico to Canada, a 3,000 mile walk, I crossed the Mojave Desert with temperatures of 120 degrees Fahrenheit. I set off with 60 lbs on my back but no liquid and walked 32 miles to the next water source. Then next day, 24 miles to Mojave Town and water. When I walked across America - Coast to Coast - 4,243 miles - for four months the temperature did not drop below 90 degrees Fahrenheit every day and I never carried any liquid. I have experimented drinking water on a hot day, but it just makes me sick! It is a fact that the more you drink the more you sweat and the more you want to drink. For a happy life it is better to abstain.

In another life, in 1450AD, I was a Buddhist monk in Tibet and was an abbot of a monastery in northern Tibet. Today I have deep affection and closeness to Buddhism, the Dalai Lama and Tibetan people. Recently I was in France and had to travel by bus as the train-line was being repaired. On the coach a man came to me and asked where I would be staying that night as we would not be arriving until midnight. I said I could camp or find somewhere when I got there. He returned to his seat and came back ten minutes later and said I was very welcome to stay at his house, which was a 2 km walk from the bus station. I walked with him pulling his heavy cases. I looked at him and thought he was Asian and asked him where he came from. Tibet he said, “I fled with mother when aged 5” from Lhasa! We have been inseparable ever since, a very close bond, and that night I slept in his temple room surrounded by Buddha’s, after we had talked for three hours. The cases we were pulling were full of Buddhist texts, and he has a bigger collection than the British Museum. Buddhists don’t harm anything or anyone and is the way I naturally run my life. I avoid stepping on a worm and all the birds and animals I pass, I talk to and they do not run away. I don’t argue with people, I just walk away.

In the 1760’s I was a native American Indian and used to run between the camps with messages. This is where I get my stamina and endurance from. I am a natural runner and at school could out pace anyone whatever the distance. After the first sports-day I was so embarrassed, having won or came second in all the races that I hid in the toilets when it came to prize-giving. The headmaster found me, one hour later and presented me with the school cup! Sadly there was no one to help me to advance, for I was running the mile faster than Roger Banister was at 16 years of age. Again I have a deep connection to Navajo and Zuni tribes and have spent many days in New Mexico meeting them and sitting in their Kiva’s, meditating and understanding naturally, their way of life and appreciation of mother earth. Although I wasn’t too happy about doing the snake dance with live rattlesnakes!

I am afraid gore-tex does not work for me, much to the disappointment of equipment manufacturers. The simple reason is I generate too much heat and the fabric can’t cope with it and the inside is throughly wet. All bodies are made differently, and I am quite happy to wear a cotton jacket and get soaked but feel perfectly comfortable. It is a Buddhist technique to go to bed in wet clothes and wake up the next morning in dry clothes! On the Appalachian Trail I slept in 6 inches of water one night but felt warm and slept well, with no side effects.

Now I want to learn more about my other lives I have had. And, in Buddhist tradition, as I give my last breath I shall state what I want to experience in my next life. Everything is in continuous flow. I know I have been a hermit and is why I can either camp in a tent, alone and in a remote wild place, or sleep by a hedge and feel most comfortable. I know I will not be molested by both animals or humans; a protective ring surrounds me.

(Copyright - John Merrill 8/9/2021).