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  ‼  Aum, Asato maa sadgamaya, Tamaso maa jyotirgamaya  ‼  


Fasting On Purnima 
(Full Moon Day)

All religions consider certain days in a week to be sacred.

The Jews observe the Sabbath. Muslims observe Friday as their day of special prayer and the Hindus follow the lunar calendar, which is based on the waxing and waning of the moon.

The Hindus consider, the full moon day, (Purnima) sacred. Some Hindus fast on this day, or at any rate take only light food in the night. I am going to tell you the reason.

Man is composed of 80% liquid and 20% solid. You might wonder how? Well, blood is liquid, is it not? The moon has an effect on the sea, making the tides rise or fall. In the same way, the moon also has an effect on the liquid content in man. The above results in man becoming tense and irritable. That is how the term 'lunatic' came into being. 'luna' means 'moon' in latin. Lunatic means 'insane'.

Our wise ancestors, looked for ways to combat the evil effects on human behavior during the full moon and new moon days. They found that light food on these days would lower the acidic content in our system, which helps human beings to retain their mental balance. By fasting or taking light food the whole system is given a rest. By praying man would not allow his emotions to run wild. When the system is at rest psychologically also there is rest in man. He feels comfortable physically and psychologically and will not be prone to irritation and outburst of temper.

Excerpt from:
Full moon (Poornima) enhances your qualities

…Another aspect in Poornima (full moon) the planet is in a certain position in relation to the moon. The vibration and feel of the moon is very different when it is full. And its magnetic pull is also different at the time. It is working upon the surface of the planet which is exposed to the moon. When there is such a natural pull since your spine is vertical there is a tendency for your energies to move upward. That means blood and prana , the fundamental life energies, flow in a different way. Just as tides rise higher on that night because of the moon’s gravitational pull, your blood is also being pulled up and the circulation of blood increases in your brain.
This upsurge of energy enhances your qualities whatever they may be. If you are mentally unbalanced, it will make you even more imbalanced. If you are meditative it makes you more meditative. If you areloving it makes you more loving. If you are fearful it makes you more fearful. The same happens with other qualities in you too, but most may not be sensitive enough to notice it.
For seekers, especially those on the meditative path…poornima (full moon) is giving you a free ride of energy and awareness.

Hindus also observe fasting on Ekadashi, the eleventh day of the fortnight. This is intended to give a rest to the digestive system in the human body, so that the stomach muscles can easily throw out the toxic contents of the food without strain.

Fasting is a sort of-Self discipline. It strengthens our faith in God.When we keep fasts for a purpose, we act on the faith that our prayers will be answered. Faith is positive thinking: so the chances are that what you wish for will come to pass. 

The purpose of fasting is not simply refraining from eating and drinking but refraining from evil speech thoughts and deeds…and to be in a state of worship even while asleep.

Having said that  Fasting  creates remarkable endurance in a person,a special feeling of empathy and a sense of equality between the rich and the poor.

Fasting occasionally, is a key to good health.

 The above 'note' is a simplified excerpt from 'Hindu Customs and Beliefs' by Shakun Narain. If you would like to read the whole book, click here.

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