Daniel Fast: Day 8

Today is my 8th day on the Daniel Fast.  The first two days I was exhausted, but my energy has returned and I am happy to say that I have lost a little over 5 pounds.  Surprisingly, it really hasn’t been difficult.  I have done many different fasts, detoxification processes, and purification programs.  This has been one of the easiest of them.

As part of the process, I have also committed to daily meditation and to the clearing of a space.  Meditation is something that I have done sporadically for many years, so this is just a way to be consistent.  The clearing is something that I really started doing about 7 years ago.

There is something freeing about letting go of things.  I have decided I will go through my closet and dresser and get rid of anything that does not fit or look great on me.  I did this several years ago after reading an article explaining how to empty the closet/drawer and to try everything on before hanging it back in the closet.  (To expedite the process, I ditched the things I didn’t love first. Then toss the things that have holes, stains, etc.)  I thought these would be appropriate spaces to clear since my focus is on losing weight.  The bonus is that clearing spaces always allows something new to come into my experience.

So, I have 13 days to complete this process.  I am looking forward to optimizing my health, releasing excess weight, and seeing some great new things in my life.

 

 

 

 

Daniel Fast

Today I began the Daniel Fast, a 21 day, biblically based, eating plan.  It is a way for me to hit the reset button, as I have been on a weight loss program for a while and I have hit a plateau.  The primary differences between this eating plan and the way I eat now is that the plan does not allow meat or dairy.  I am not a huge dairy consumer and I am not one who must have meat, so this shouldn’t be too bad.  I was on a cleanse last year that didn’t allow meat or dairy for the first week and it was fine.

The most compelling thing for me is the spiritual component of the fast.  The purpose for the fast is to gain clarity.  I have chosen to make it my own, so I am meditating in the morning as part of my program.  I meditate sporadically.   I will do it faithfully for months at a time.  Then, for whatever reason, I stop.  Meditation is good for me.  It calms me, centers me, and gives me a sense of well-being.  I am hoping that doing the Daniel Fast will help me get back on track and that I stick to my meditation for a while.  I will post about my progress over the coming weeks.  Until then, here is my favorite meditation story.

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Meditation

When I was a single mother, I set up a corner of my bedroom as a place to write and meditate.   It consisted of a chair and table nestled in the corner of my bedroom where two windows met.  The windows overlooked bird-filled trees and a creek in the backyard.  On the table, I kept a journal and pencils (my preferred writing instrument), an incense burner, a candle, whatever books I was currently reading, and some flowers.  I also kept a guitar nearby.  Even with four kids at home, this was my refuge.

When I remarried, I wanted to replicate my little haven in my new home.  There is a window in the corner of the bedroom, so I placed a chair and table there.  This table consists of books, a candle, a couple of horse figurines that had belonged to my dad, and a pile of dimes (another post).  Nearby is monitor and microphone.  I used this area mostly for meditation and a place to focus when I am on a conference call or doing some other task requiring concentration or quiet.

When I was single, I could go to my corner any time and often meditated first thing in the morning.  I was a very early riser, usually up before anyone else and often by 4:00 A.M.  As it turns out, my husband is an early riser as well, a very light sleeper, and NOT one to meditates.  I began to feel self-conscious during my sitting practice, thinking about him waking up and seeing me meditating… which of course defeats the purpose.  So, I began retreating to the living room for my morning sitting while my husband showered.

One morning, as I sat cross-legged on the couch, with the lights off and a blanket wrapped around my shoulders to keep out the early morning draught, I heard our bedroom door open.  I tried to turn my attention back to my breath, but I could hear him coming closer.  I did not move, hoping he might be heading to the kitchen.  A moment later I felt him plop down on the couch right beside me.  He placed his head on my shoulder and looked up at me.  In the perky sing-song tone of a little child, he asked, “Whatcha doin’?”

Stifling a laugh, I responded, “I WAS meditating.”

Clearly embarrassed, he immediately got up, apologized, and left the room.  I remained in my sitting position and finished my meditation.  Afterward I had a laugh with my husband.  As awkward as this was, it wasn’t the last incident.

A few weeks later, thinking my husband wouldn’t look for me in my son’s bedroom, I slipped off for some sitting practice.  I left the light off and the door cracked slightly open.  A few minutes into my meditation, I heard him opening doors in the house one at a time, even opening the front door and stepping outside for a moment.  He was looking for me.  I giggled to myself and continued sitting.  Eventually, I could sense him peeking into my sons room and then gingerly walking away.

My husband and I have had many laughs over this story, and we have both learned some lessons.  I, for one, have learned to be more direct… simply tell my husband that I am going to be meditating.  I think my husband has learned that if I am sitting in the dark with my eyes closed, I am probably meditating.