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fasting, why and when do you fast
Fasting is a common practice for spiritualist,
let's discuss why and when should we fast.
Is it compulsory for our spiritual path? what do you think.
A meditation is a trip to the space between the sun and earth. Where there is No days no nights, no noise, no rain, no wind, no earth force of attraction, but just peace, just light, just silence, just freedom. Would you Join me in this trip?

M. Krya
I would say its necessary.

In response to the WHY ? I'd say we fast either to moderate our Weakness regarding the element's balance(Earth in this case=Gnomes=Stomach) on us or to achieve some goal yes its true there are some matter that need fasting before to process or while processing on it. Else its can be done to purify ourself as well as teaching our sense or instinct.

Tips: Let's say im a "Food killer" then to moderate this i must control myself . if i use to eat three(3) times a day then i make it to two (2) and One(1) and try to fast from 6am to 6 pm a day.

So one's could say its compulsory for one's spiritual path as it is part of self-control and development.

Thanks a lot
I have never fasted before. I would like to know: Do any of you fast over a specific period? For how long, does that include drinking water?
I know some people will fast but only eat fruit and drink water but in very small amounts, so aiding the body to detox. Smile
Hi, you can fast over a specific period yes depending on the purpose of your fasting. For beginners its better to start fasting 6 am to 6 pm by drinking water but no too much but there is a 24h fast period as well so for 1day no drinking no eating this practice include meditation and/or prayer to help to control our-self (spiritually and physically) and do not forget to break the fast by just eating fruit or not so greedy please don't get into too much food for the reason of "fasting" its could lead to serious sickness. Its possible to also fast for 1 to 7 days in this you can eat at a specific time let's say im fasting from 6am to 6pm, then i'm gonna have a light meal at 5am again at 6pm...........
In Every religion, fasting is very important, I'll take some close definitions and importance of fasting in some of them. (Personally I like how Baha’i’s view the fast as well as Buddhist's wink

In Islam,

According to the Quran, every Muslim (who can) must fast in the month of Ramadan 2:183-185. And fasting has to be done collectively at the community level. Unlike a Buddhist monk or a Hindu saint, a Muslim does not have to go to a mountain or a forest retreat to develop their spirituality through fasting and prayer. Moreover, it is not necessary for this type of retreat-based, solitary spiritual development to be done in Ramadan. That can be done in any month. This shows that a Muslim cannot advocate a spirituality that is based on individual and subjective experience. Therefore, in Islam, individual and subjective spiritual development is not the purpose of fasting in the month of Ramadan.

Since the Quran prescribed fasting specifically in the month of Ramadan, it is important to know the significance of this special time. A special feature of the Quran is that whenever it gives a command for action, it also provides the wisdom behind it. It tells what the final result of that action will be in this world, if it is successfully carried out. In this way the Quran provides a pragmatic test for people to see whether or not they are moving toward that desired result. Regarding fasting, the Quran says:

O ye who believe! Fasting is prescribed to you as it was prescribed to those before you, that ye may (learn) self-restraint . [al-Baqarah 2:183] Translation: Yusuf Ali

In the above verses, three results of fasting in Ramadan have been mentioned:

1) Taqwaa : learning self-restraint

2) Takbir : glorifying Allah Almighty because of being guided

3) Shukra : being grateful .

In Christian Faith

Although, Jesus fasted for 40 days and nights in the wilderness and Moses fasted twice on the mountain for 40 days and 40 nights with neither food nor water.

Now days, there is not a specific period or duration for the fast, and this latter can last 3 days or a month depending on the desire of the believer or the pastor…

In the Baha’i Faith,
The fasting period, which lasts nineteen days starting as a rule from the second of March every year and ending on the twentieth of the same month, involves complete abstention from food and drink from sunrise till sunset. It is essentially a period of meditation and prayer, of spiritual recuperation, during which the believer must strive to make the necessary readjustments in his/her inner life, and to refresh and reinvigorate the spiritual forces latent in his soul. Its significance and purpose are, therefore, fundamentally spiritual in character. Fasting is symbolic, and a reminder of abstinence from selfish and carnal desires."

Fasting is the cause of awakening man. The heart becomes tender and the spirituality of man increases. This is produced by the fact that man's thoughts will be confined to the commemoration of God, and through this awakening and stimulation surely ideal advancements follow... Fasting is of two kinds, material and spiritual. The material fasting is abstaining from food or drink, that is, from the appetites of the body. But spiritual, ideal fasting is this, that man abstain from selfish passions, from negligence and from satanic animal traits. Therefore, material fasting is a token of the spiritual fasting. That is: `O God! As I am fasting from the appetites of the body and not occupied with eating and drinking, even so purify and make holy my heart and my life from aught else save Thy Love, and protect and preserve my soul from self-passions... Thus may the spirit associate with the Fragrances of Holiness and fast from everything else save Thy mention.

So according to the Bahá’í Faith, the purpose of fasting is to bring us closer to God. `Abdu'l-Bahá explains:

Fasting is a symbol. Fasting signifies abstinence from lust. Physical fasting is a symbol of that abstinence, and is a reminder; that is, just as a person abstains from physical appetites, he is to abstain from self-appetites and self-desires. But mere abstention from food has no effect on the spirit. It is only a symbol, a reminder. Otherwise it is of no importance. Fasting for this purpose does not mean entire abstinence from food. The golden rule as to food is, do not take too much or too little. Moderation is necessary. There is a sect in India who practice extreme abstinence, and gradually reduces their food until they exist on almost nothing. But their intelligence suffers. A man is not fit to do service for God with brain or body if he is weakened by lack of food. He cannot see clearly.

Amazingly, Abdu'l-Bahá talks about moderation while fasting, I find this very interesting because of the following:

Although, in Buddhism, Fasting is recognized as one of the methods for practicing self-control. The Buddha advised monks not to take solid food after noon.

A Buddhist monastic community is prone to fasting as an ascetic practice or dhutanga. Dhutangas are a list of 13 practices, four of which pertain to food eaten once a day, eaten at one sitting, reducing the amount you eat, and eating only the food that you receive at the first seven houses. These practices are voluntary in a Buddhist monastic’s life.
The Buddha’s spiritual awakening is closely linked to fasting. The moment he stopped fasting, he realized his great awakening.
The story of the Buddha is in itself a lesson in fasting, as he was a prince who renounced all worldly desires in search of the truth about life. He found teachers to tell him what they thought about life, and drew on his experiences with people in times of old age, death and rebirth. His experiences made him realize that desire was the root of all evil and of human life. Food was man’s first and most basic desire. So, he decided to give up this desire and gain freedom from the tangles of worldly life and suffering. Initially, he at only one grain of rice and a sesame seed per day. He soon grew so thin that he could touch his spine by pressing his stomach. He lost all strength to meditate and realized that he would die before he learnt the great lessons of this world. He had to understand his mind. He also saw that he could no longer control his desire by force.
At that time, a young maiden offered him a bowl of porridge which he accepted. The food gave him the strength he needed to meditate and he realized Buddhahood. His experiment to quit fasting taught him to lead life in moderation. Moderation soon became the central tenet of Buddhist practice.

Some of these ideas can also be found in the writings of Gandhi: A genuine fast cleanses the body, mind and soul. It crucifies the flesh and to that extent sets the soul free. A sincere prayer can work wonders. It is an intense longing of the soul for its even greater purity. Purity thus gained, when it is utilized for a noble purpose, becomes prayer.

I believe that there is no prayer without fasting, and there is no real fast without prayer.

I know that the mental attitude is everything. Just as prayer may be merely a mechanical intonation as of a bird, so may a fast be a mere mechanical torture of the flesh... Neither will touch the soul.

Also, when you fast, it’s not important to tell the whole world that you are fasting, in some instances you may but it’s not important. Btw, rather let your friends know before you fast. Jesus says in Matthew 6:17-18 "But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you."

Ah one more thing, it’s not to scare you but, when you fast, temptation will walk side by side with you also. Those in the Christian faith may say that Jesus was alone when he fasted for 40 days and nights in the wilderness. Well, he was not exactly alone, the devil was with him. (Luke 4:2).

Good Luck ! grin
Hey Darfour,
That's a lot of useful references you've displayed there. I especially liked the Baha’i Faith view on this.
and based on what you've just said, what would be your definition to Fasting?

As based on what Abdu'l-Bahá explained, it comes up clear to me that fasting is an other self-control exercise.If a person manages to abstain from eating despite the need, he/she is likely to manage abstaining from other desires of the lower world (visible and invisible). The same will power we get from abstaining from one thing give you strength to abstain from an other thing of the same nature, so to speak, you could use the same power to abstain from jalousie, anger, lust.

In the initiation, man is divided into 2 part by the diaphragm, the higher part (heart,brain) represent Heaven and the lower part (sex, stomach) represent Hell; then exercising some control over the stomach appears to be a self control over the lower world. therefore purification comes in play, as whoever do not allow the lower world to manifest in him, is pure.

Besides, fasting is also a way to purify the physical body, it comes very light after a proper fast. and its vibrations changes and effect beneficially the vibration of the rest of our bodies ( astral and mental).
It is so important to fast especially when we are not vegetarian, we should not ignore the fact that we do absorb the low vibrations of animals that effect our inner world. fasting for a many days to the point of dying of hunger is just insane unless you are doing it to verify the life of Gottama (Buddha). it's best to fast regularly like once a week from 6am to 6pm seems fare to me, because it's just enough time to remove so much dirt in the stomach and and in the blood. I believe we should be careful to not weaken the physical body, moderation is the key here.
A meditation is a trip to the space between the sun and earth. Where there is No days no nights, no noise, no rain, no wind, no earth force of attraction, but just peace, just light, just silence, just freedom. Would you Join me in this trip?

M. Krya
Absolutely Krya!
Do you maybe know when and where this practice took place?
A meditation is a trip to the space between the sun and earth. Where there is No days no nights, no noise, no rain, no wind, no earth force of attraction, but just peace, just light, just silence, just freedom. Would you Join me in this trip?

M. Krya
Body-mind-spirit are interconnected. what affect one will also affect all the others. Many illnesses are caused by toxic wastes accumulated in either our body, our mind, or our spirit. So that is why the idea of fasting is essential because it affords our body, our minds or our spirit the necessary time to start detoxing from all those impurities.

There are many reasons why someone can fast: health reasons, emotional reasons, intellectual reasons or spiritual reasons.All the great minds of human history (such as Buddha, Jesus, Moses, Gandhi, Newton, Einstein and many more) have practiced extended fasting (of more than a month!). This should tell us that they knew there is some great benefit in fasting otherwise they wouldn't have done it.

As far as health related fast is concerned, it is all about releasing accumulated toxins in the body. This goes as follow: each time you eat food or you drink beverages, you also ingest many chemicals that were included in the process of its production (ex: animal hormones, fertilizers, chlorine, carbonated drinks, etc). Your body cannot always expel all of it in time so it will have to store the rest in your kidneys and livers for latter discharge. But the problem is that your body never get that chance because you keep on eating unhealthy foods (junk food, processed food or carbonated drinks) which input even more toxins in it. Now, it comes to a point where your kidneys and livers can't take it any more and so you become sick (some can be deadly) and you are forced to lose appetite of food so they can do their job. Therefore, in order to prevent sicknesses, it is better to be practicing regular fasting (say one week for every six months).

I personally have done (October 2011) a one week detox program which involved three colon hydrotherapy cleansing and seven days of fasting followed by two days of eating soft food (soup and porridge). I can testify that it had a tremendous positive effect on my overall health because I have gained much balance, clarity and energy which boosted my self confidence even further. So I can also recommend you to consider that possibility.

However, I would like to say about the expressed advise that you should only drink a small quantity of water. That idea is incorrect because water is absolutely essential for detoxification! You should actually drink even more water (at least 3 litters a day) during fast than in normal time because the water will helps to dilute the toxins and flash them out from your system. If your water intake is insufficient, the colon will not be able to flash out the toxins and so you will re-absorb them back in your system and this means all your fasting effort will be useless. Just make sure your water is dechlorinated because the chlorine in our tap water is also a toxic product !
Mystery creates wonder. Wonder produces curiosity. Curiosity raises questions. Questions lead to answers.
(07-30-2012, 01:37 AM)krya Wrote: Do you maybe know when and where this practice took place?

Hi krya,

What do you mean by that? You are using the past tense.

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