Aleteia logoAleteia logoAleteia
Saturday 26 November |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Gaetana Sterni
Aleteia logo
Lifestyle
separateurCreated with Sketch.

Video of surfer riding 115-foot wave goes viral … and reminds us of a spiritual truth

SEBASTIAN STEUDTNER

WSL Big Wave Awards | YouTube | Fair Use

Sarah Robsdottir - published on 11/13/19

Sebastian Steudtner has stunned the world with his abilities, but maybe even more amazing is what surfing can teach us about God.

If you’ve ever been caught in a rip tide, you’ll certainly gasp at Sebastian Steudtner’s ability to turn one of nature’s most frightening marvels into sport. A viral video of Steudtner surfing in Nazarre, Portugal, was shot last year by Javier Goya of Ura Films and has received over 1.7M views. The “Big Wave” ride was Steudtner’s submission into the 2018 Ride of the Year Award, a competition put on by the World Surfing League.

That’s not all that’s remarkable about this surfer, however. Born and raised in Nuremberg, Germany (not New Zealand or Hawaii or even the Jersey Shore), he first tried surfing at the age of 9 while on vacation with his family and was instantly hooked. After he begged his parents to pursue training, they consented to send him to surfing school in Hawaii at only 13 years old. Now, at 24, he travels the world giving inspirational talks, serving underprivileged children and sharing his message: “Anything is possible. Believe in your dreams and find the courage to make them a reality.”

While Steudtner’s athleticism and message are compelling, there’s something even more profound about his mesmerizing accomplishments. Dr. Peter Kreeft, best-selling author and Professor of Philosophy at Boston College and avid surfer, can attest to the many analogies of the spiritual journey found in surfing:

The key elements in the symbolism are pretty clear: I, the surfer, am—myself. The body with which I surf in the sea symbolizes the soul, with which I “surf” in God. The sea is God. The beach is the approach to God. Surfing is the experience of God, or the spiritual life.

Dr. Kreeft has even appeared in a short film and written a page-turner of a book on the subject, both of which anyone with a love of the sea — surfer or not — will find profoundly insightful.




Read more:
“The Sea Within”: A Philosophy of Surfing


EASTERN POINT RETREAT HOUSE

Read more:
5 Inspiring Catholic retreat centers by the ocean

Tags:
Sports
Support Aleteia!

Enjoying your time on Aleteia?

Articles like these are sponsored free for every Catholic through the support of generous readers just like you.

Thanks to their partnership in our mission, we reach more than 20 million unique users per month!

Help us continue to bring the Gospel to people everywhere through uplifting and transformative Catholic news, stories, spirituality, and more.

Support Aleteia with a gift today!

jour1_V2.gif
Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Entrust your prayer intentions to our network of monasteries


Top 10
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here. It's Free!