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  #1  
Old 08-01-2012, 07:23 AM
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Default Fasting Days & Guidelines

What are the Most Important Fasting Days--in your opinion?

Also, what are the guidelines- what does one abstain from all food and liquids?

Lastly, I have a endocrine/metabolic disorder and pre-diabetes, is it culturally accepted to customize my fasting for this? For i.e. I know some people do a partial fast, fasting from certain things but taking others, i.e. yogurt & fruits..would it be ok to do that for each fast as I could not go without food for too long w.o. entering an unhealthy state..


thanks in advance if you have answers or the time to read

HARIBOL!
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  #2  
Old 08-01-2012, 07:32 AM
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I don't fast at all. I also have a specific reason for this.
But generally I think that many Hindus fast by avoiding meat on holidays. (At least the ones that I know personally, they are not vegetarian).

Vegetarian Hindus might eat lighter, maybe yogurt and fruit like you mentioned.

I think it should be up to the individual, if it brings you closer to God then that's great. If it is just one of those things you think you SHOULD do, but doesn't help you spiritually then I don't think it's necessary.

Maya
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  #3  
Old 08-01-2012, 07:42 AM
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I think it should be up to the individual, if it brings you closer to God then that's great. If it is just one of those things you think you SHOULD do, but doesn't help you spiritually then I don't think it's necessary.
I guess coming from an Islamic Faith it's hard to imagine that things can be just up to me, much is mandatory and if not done needs to be made up for later.

I guess as a vegetarian maybe go vegan for the week or day.

Thanks Maya for the input (that's actually how you pronounce my name )

Have a fruitful day.
Haribol!
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  #4  
Old 08-01-2012, 07:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Maija View Post
What are the Most Important Fasting Days--in your opinion?

Also, what are the guidelines- what does one abstain from all food and liquids?

Lastly, I have a endocrine/metabolic disorder and pre-diabetes, is it culturally accepted to customize my fasting for this? For i.e. I know some people do a partial fast, fasting from certain things but taking others, i.e. yogurt & fruits..would it be ok to do that for each fast as I could not go without food for too long w.o. entering an unhealthy state..


thanks in advance if you have answers or the time to read

HARIBOL!
No fast is mandatory, regardless of what you may read. Sometimes the rules can get a bit outrageous. Bhakti, devotion, is what counts.

There are many fasts that one can undertake, in many ways (giving up certain foods, for example). Each day is dedicated to a deity, so one can pick the fast for the deity one worships. For example, Monday is for Lord Shiva, Tuesday is for Sri Hanuman, and so on. There are fasts for Diwali, Durga Puja and many more. Want to lose weight? Become Hindu.

[Deleted because it was a bit overwhelming].

Lastly and most importantly, and to the point, which I cannot stress enough...

If you have a physical condition as you do, or do manual labor, or anything else that puts a strain on your body DO NOT undertake anything more than a token fast, if even that. The Lord does not want us to suffer for the sake of "rules". It is the devotion that counts.
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oṃ namo nārāyaṇāya

Last edited by Jainarayan; 08-01-2012 at 08:01 AM..
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  #5  
Old 08-01-2012, 07:56 AM
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Fasting really varies, by definition, and by practice. So when someone says, "I'm fasting," you have no idea what they mean. It can mean nothing at all, nothing but water, just fruit juice, just fruit juice and a sweetener, no meat, etc. Many Hindus don't fast at all. Others fast once a week. Others fast on specified Holy Days according to the Hindu calendar. Others fast just before attending temple, so if they are planning to go in the morning, they skip breakfast. Or if they're going in the evening, don't eat until very late. Still others fast for major festivals, moreso for the penance or austere ones like Sivaratri. Still others will undertake longer fasts like 6 days for the festival of Skanda Shasti.

So yes, it is up to you.
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  #6  
Old 08-01-2012, 08:41 AM
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Hi Maija you have a beautiful name

You will find that Hinduism is very freeing, it is a totally different mindset then with Abrahamic religions. There is no fear, guilt or any sense of not being good enough. It's all about finding God within.

Well, maybe that is a bit of an exaggeration, I do often feel that my meditation was not as good and focused as it should have been. But still, it's rather freeing for the most part.


I forgot to mention in my earlier reply; that if you have a health issue then of course there is no reason to fast.

Maya

Last edited by Maya3; 08-01-2012 at 08:46 AM..
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  #7  
Old 08-01-2012, 08:43 AM
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Medical concerns always take precedence in any spiritual dietary prescription.
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  #8  
Old 08-01-2012, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Maija View Post
What are the Most Important Fasting Days--in your opinion?
As per Vaishnavism, for progressing in the Devotional path to Supreme Lord, the most important fasting days are that of 'Ekādashi'. Ekādaśī is very dear to Kṛṣṇa and is considered to be the 'mother of Devotion'. Typically, there are 2 Ekadaśī days in a month.

You can find the Ekādashi calendar for 2012 here: Monthly Ekadasi Dates 2012 Calendar - Ekadashi Dates

Also, what are the guidelines- what does one abstain from all food and liquids?

Foods that can be eaten on Ekādashi:

All fruits (fresh and dried)
All nuts and nut oils
Sugar
Buckwheat
Potatoes, cassava and sweet potatoes
Coconut
Olives
Milk
Fresh ginger
Black pepper
Rock salt

Restricted foods on Ekādashi:

All grains & products derived from these ingredients
Peas, chickpeas, dahl and all types of beans, including derived products such as tofu
Salt, baking soda, baking powder, custard and many sweets are avoided as they are often mixed with rice powder
Sesame seeds (except on Sat-tila Ekadasi, when sesame seeds may be offered as well as eaten)
Spices such as asafetida, cloves, fenugreek, mustard, tamarind, fennel, cardamom and nutmeg

Quote:
Lastly, I have a endocrine/metabolic disorder and pre-diabetes, is it culturally accepted to customize my fasting for this? For i.e. I know some people do a partial fast, fasting from certain things but taking others, i.e. yogurt & fruits..would it be ok to do that for each fast as I could not go without food for too long w.o. entering an unhealthy state..
For devotion and service to Supreme Lord, body needs to be taken care of. Taking medicines is allowed on Ekādaśī days. Asides, as you can see above, you can eat a lot of things on Ekādaśī days.

Quote:
thanks in advance if you have answers or the time to read

HARIBOL!
Haribol!
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  #9  
Old 08-01-2012, 11:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vrindavana Das View Post
As per Vaishnavism, for progressing in the Devotional path to Supreme Lord, the most important fasting days are that of 'Ekādashi'. Ekādaśī is very dear to Kṛṣṇa and is considered to be the 'mother of Devotion'. Typically, there are 2 Ekadaśī days in a month.


Foods that can be eaten on Ekādashi:

All fruits (fresh and dried)
All nuts and nut oils
Sugar
Buckwheat
Potatoes, cassava and sweet potatoes
Coconut
Olives
Milk
Fresh ginger
Black pepper
Rock salt

Restricted foods on Ekādashi:

All grains & products derived from these ingredients
Peas, chickpeas, dahl and all types of beans, including derived products such as tofu
Salt, baking soda, baking powder, custard and many sweets are avoided as they are often mixed with rice powder
Sesame seeds (except on Sat-tila Ekadasi, when sesame seeds may be offered as well as eaten)
Spices such as asafetida, cloves, fenugreek, mustard, tamarind, fennel, cardamom and nutmeg



For devotion and service to Supreme Lord, body needs to be taken care of. Taking medicines is allowed on Ekādaśī days. Asides, as you can see above, you can eat a lot of things on Ekādaśī days.



Haribol!
That post was really helpful, Vrindavana ! I will most definitely be able to fast now, thank you so much. I also get to learn about Ekadasi, fasting for my Lord days..

Maya--

I completely agree, it's a totally different feeling than other religions, compared to Islam it's like night and day. Looking back, I have wonderful memories of Islam, but it did seem to have definite sentiments of what was correct/incorrect, how many times people threw the word "haram" around. Plucking eye brows is haram, wearing hair in a high bun is haram, showing hair, showing face, wearing perfume.. Just examples, so it's very different, wonderfully freeing in fact.

Jainarayan-- do you fast? Which aspect of God do you feel most devoted to, just curious. You're very knowledgeable!

Thank God I'm journaling now, I have so much wonderful knowledge to add each day.

Love and blessings.

Haribol !

Last edited by Maija; 08-01-2012 at 11:50 PM..
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  #10  
Old 08-02-2012, 12:07 AM
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Happy to help!

I think I sound like a Vodafone commercial...
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