Body fat: 27.1%
Sleep: 4hrs 57min
BP: 153/84 @54bpm
So far the hunger pangs haven’t been too bad.
I mean, yes right now I’d love to sit down to a good feed, but that’s not gonna happen so I might as well just get over myself.
Here’s how my day has gone so far:
5am – first double espresso.
6am – second double espresso
9 am – Jennifer has a home-made muffin with her coffee, and I desire it. Unconditionally.
10am – I have a cup of Darjeerling tea. The highlight of my morning so far.
11am – I open the fridge, gaze inside, close the fridge.
11:15am – I open the fridge, gaze inside, close the fridge.
11:30am – I resist the urge to open the fridge. I note this as a form of spiritual growth.
12pm – I hear a thunderstorm coming but realise it’s only my stomach…
6pm – I exercise on my bike. 40mins/18.0kms/582cals
7pm – I have another cup of Darjeerling tea. The highlight of my evening so far.
Continuing citing Dr. Jason Fung’s book, The Complete Guide to Fasting, here is what he has to say about the spirituality of fasting…
Fasting is widely practiced for spiritual purposes and remains part of virtually every major religion in the world. Three of the most influential men in the history of the world, Jesus Christ, Buddha, and the Prophet Muhammad all shared a common belief in the healing power of fasting. In spiritual terms, it is often called cleansing or purification, but practically, it amounts to the same thing.
The practice of fasting developed independently among different religions and cultures, not as something that was harmful but as something that was deeply, intrinsically beneficial to the human body and spirit. Fasting is not so much a treatment for illness but a treatment for wellness.
The regular application of fasting helps protect people from illness and keeps them feeling well. In the story of Adam and Eve, the only act that is prohibited in the Garden of Eden is to eat the fruit of one tree, and Eve is tempted by the serpent to betray this trust.
Fasting is thus an act of turning away from temptation and back toward God. In the Bible, Matthew 4:2 states, “Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.”
(I’ll mention here the interesting point that hunger often disappears during extended fasts, which has been noted throughout history.)
In the Christian tradition, fasting and prayer are often methods of cleansing and renewing the soul. Symbolically, believers empty their souls so that they may be ready to receive God. Fasting is not so much about self-denial but about a reaching for spirituality and being able to commune with God and hear his voice.
By fasting, you put your body under submission to the Holy Spirit, humble your soul before the presence of God, and prepare yourself to hear the voice of God.
Buddhist monks are known to abstain from eating after noon, fasting until the next morning. In addition, there may be water-only fasts for days or weeks on end. They fast to quench their human desires, which helps them rise above all desires in order to achieve nirvana and end all suffering. This fits with their core beliefs in moderation and austerity.
Hinduism embraces fasting in the belief that our sins lessen as the body suffers. It is also seen as a method of cultivating control over desires and guiding the mind toward peace: the physical needs of the body are denied for spiritual gains. Certain days of the week are designated for fasting in Hinduism, as are certain days of the month. Fasting is also common at festivals.
Traditional Ayurvedic medicine also ascribes the cause of many illnesses to the accumulation of toxins in the body and prescribes fasting to cleanse these toxins. Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset during the holy month of Ramadan. According to the Qur’an, the Prophet Muhammad said, “The month of Ramadan is a blessed month, a month in which Allah has made fasting obligatory.”
The Prophet Muhammad also encouraged fasting on Mondays and Thursdays. Ramadan is the best studied of the fasting periods, but it differs from many fasting protocols in that fluids are forbidden, which results in a period of mild dehydration.