Full Moon Fast
Recently, I followed the ancient yogic practice of “dry fasting” on this full moon, as I try to do on all full moons. Yogis teach that the best day for fasting is 3 days before the new and full moons, which is the same as the 11th day after the full and new moons. This day is called ekadashi in India, which means “11th day.”
A short fast of 24 hours without food and water is very beneficial to the mind and the body. While resting the digestive organs the body can quickly get rid of unnecessary toxins. The slightly excessive pressure on the pineal gland on the full moon is reduced by literally drying out the fluids in the body. For men, a short dry fast helps keep the seminal fluid production in check which is the most effective biological manner of keeping the sexual desires more tame. Celibate monastics perform this fast 4 times a month. Householders should at least fast on ekadashi while monks and nuns also fast on the new and full moons. 4 fasts a month makes the monastic life-style more comfortable and adaptable. I practiced this in my youth and still fast at least twice a month. Instead of feeling weak, one actually gets extremely vitalized and purified by these fasts. Meditation is aided as the mind feels pure and light after a good fast. Keeping the body and mind pure is the best defense against all illness. It is also nice to synchronize your human activity with a practical ritual in harmony with the phases of the moon.
Those who sincerely practice this yoga will always do something good in the world.Vishal Quetzal, author profile