Saturday, September 25, 2004

Fast. No faster.

So today I tried something I’ve never done before; I fasted. It was Yom Kippur and as much as I have a tendency to only practice the easy or helpful parts of my Judaic heritage, I decided this Day of Atonement was the one for me to fast on.

I’m not really sure what I was looking for here, maybe I thought I needed atonement for some of the things my job has made me do these last few months. Even that is cheating to say though, because no job made me do anything. I decided to do the things I’ve done and I’ve never been forced to do anything. My sins are my own, clutched tightly to my soul like a bag of cancer. Not eating for 24 hours doesn’t really alleviate those sins, but I decided it was something I wanted to do.

Naturally I woke up hungry, but I resigned myself to juice; it was necessary to keep my strength up because I do have a somewhat important job, and I still had to do it. I found though, that even though I was hungry, I didn’t miss food much when I resigned myself to not eating. I did notice just how much I eat, because I would catch every time I would have gone snacking, and it was more than I care to admit. By noon, I was in the groove though, so I had nothing to worry about.

And then 4 PM rolled around. Hour 22 of my fast, I felt hollow, but my head felt clear. This was after a bit of a headache earlier, but suddenly I felt good. It was a minor euphoria almost like a drugged state, and I liked it. In some small way, focusing on why I was doing this, I felt God, just a bit, off in the distance, in the way that usually requires a lot of prayer and thought. There He was.

I ended the day in peace, and then at the appropriate time I ate dinner, and not too much, but it was the best damn burger I’ve had in a long time.

So here I am, now with some nutrition in my body, and I still feel good. I get the fasting thing now. There’s a cleansing feeling after it, and it is good.

I may not even wait a whole year to do it again.

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