It would seem safe to say that the vast majority of people that post on this forum do so because they are wanting support for their water fasts so they can achieve their health and/or weight loss goals.
Very rarely do I see posts that reflect people water fasting for spiritual/religious reasons.
Water fasting has been actively promoted for BOTH health and spiritual reasons for thousands of years.
I have found fasting to be a wonderful way of becoming calmer, more grounded, able to easily see the positive side in things and feeling far more in tuned with my spiritual side.
I initially began fasting due to some excess weight that seemed unwilling to come off; however, without a doubt, I can state that it was the emotional/spiritual results of fasting that have left - and continue to leave - the most lasting impact.
If others have noticed emotional/spiritual effects from fasting, I would appreciate them sharing their experiences.
Er... yeah, I had what I consider to be a spiritual experience many years ago at a time of crisis. It's memory has guided me through lots of things, but I guess you could say I came off the track a bit physically and ended up in the brambles.
After many failed diets I was content to just live the rest of my life at home not doing much, and being morbidly obese that may not have been too long and I began to worry about this. Then, events conspired to lead me to find out about water fasting.
For me, fasting was the missing link. It is the vehicle for me to gain physical health and the spiritual side of me has reawakened with vengeance. You need a healthy body to support an active mind.
Fasting has made me realise how much at one we are with the planet, what marvellous bodies we all have, and brought me closer to my inner soul which is now bubbling with life.
The discovery of water fasting is for sure one of the most significant milestones in my life, if not the most significant. It has put me on the road to body and soul being at one with each other.
Superb posts Mouseclick.
I am pleased that Raine brought up this often neglected side of water-fasting and where it would be welcome for others to contribute as part of their own experiences while or after their fasts.
It is to be noted that fasting played a significant part of the major World religions from eons past, and where spiritual enlightenment would have been nigh on impossible without it.
The Christian religion speaks of the "Kingdom of God within" and how fasting was a means of achieving that close affinity with God/spirit/and/or true-self, and where one example was Jesus of Nazareth who fasted for forty days and nights in the wilderness, to achieve that aim.
Fasting in my experience is unique in that it affects not only the body/mind but also achieves that self-awareness and a "tuning-in" with Nature/God that nothing else could hope to.
This results in "the peace which passeth all understanding" and which is attainable by anyone who fasts, if their motivations for doing so are strong enough.
How right you are about the Kingdom of God, many Christians believe they won't enter the Kingdom of God until they die and enter Heaven. I have learned that the Kingdom of God is within us while we're here on earth. Its up to us to make the correct choices in our lives in order to achieve it.
I agree that fasting for me anyway brings me closer to the spiritual side of my life like nothing else can.
On another point... it is a common theme in the Christian religion that I was brought up with - and I am sure it is the same for other religions too - that a rich man must forsake his material addictions, it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of god, you cannot serve two masters, god and man, etc.
In other words, you have to get rid of the crap in your life that is preventing you from being at one with god. God to me, means inner self by the way.
Too often I see people here trying to cling on to their busy job or whatever, or they want to add things to their fast (thus it's not a fast any more), or they try and find some other solution to their problems, which never seem to work. A common scenario is for someone to break the fast after a few days due to the pressures of life, and then binge on comfort food.
Unfortunately this is the rich man trying to enter the kingdom of god. You really do have to make sacrifices in order to make the fasting journey. Give up whatever is preventing you from fasting for the duration of the fast. It's the only way to get enlightenment. You can't serve your employer and god as it were. Your choice.