So, one week in to my 40-day fast and how's it going? I'm happy to say, all is good so far. No major dramas but some interesting insights already.
Having been on a more or less yogic diet for quite a few years now I'd say that I've probably managed to resolve most of my food issues. As a teenager I really struggled - two short stints of bulimia being the lowest I ever sunk in that department - and my weight has yo-yoed throughout adulthood reflecting partly my lifestyle (aerobics instructor = the good years, partying PR chick = the not so good years) and also my happiness. Eating - and drinking alcohol - was a way to manage my emotions and it reflected in my health and appearance. Since balancing my eating habits, my skin has totally cleared up, my weight has stabilised and I'm emotionally so much steadier, calmer and happier than ever before.
So, physically the fast isn't as earth-shattering as it could be but it feels so far like a gentle journey where I am getting some clarity on issues that have needed clearing up for a long time now, so I guess it's doing it's job.
The fast is also coinciding with some of my yoga and meditation practices. I'm now on day 11 of both the fast and a 31-minute meditation. It is a beautiful meditation, chanting a mantra Dhan Dhan Ram Das Guru, which is said to open us up to allow miracles to enter our lives. It may sound fanciful, but as I sit, I rest my hands, palms up, on my knees and visualise that my entire body is open and receptive - I am willing to accept and receive everything that the Universe, that life, brings to me. In being open in this way I am able to see that even the small blessings and some of life's biggest challenges can be seen as miracles - they are the wonder of life unfolding all around me. But if I'm not open to seeing life in this way, life itself and the miracles will simply pass me by. You can find out more about the mantra, and buy versions of it to listen and chant along to here.
In fact I love the synchronicity of fasting combined with this mantra. The fasting is all about letting go, releasing, cleansing, and I feel that in the open space I produce through the cleanse, I make room for the new, the miracles, to enter. And they are, one after another. I welcome them all…. old friends and new, opportunities, challenges to make me question and asses my commitment to this path, communications from around the world, floating in my pool in the early morning and looking up at the clear blue sky through the leaves on my trees, connections with everyone and everything around me, the ocean I swim in and even the breath I take.
I invite you to look around you and to see everything in life as a potential miracle. When I open my eyes to the wonder, life takes on greater colour, excitement and meaning, and I feel excited and energised and driven by a deep passion within me. Life is for living and I really feel that the fast and the meditation are bringing this home to me each and every minute. Wahe guru.