Skip to main content

the fast

"And now I give you a commandment which shall be for a covenant between you and me—that ye have faith; that your faith be steadfast as a rock that no storms can move, that nothing can disturb, and that it endure through all things even to the end; even should ye hear that your Lord has been crucified, be not shaken in your faith; for I am with you always, whether living or dead, I am with you to the end. As ye have faith so shall your powers and blessings be. This is the balance—this is the balance—this is the balance."   ~ ‘Abdu’l-Bahá 

This is one of my very favorite passages from the writings of my religion, the Baha'i Faith ( And what a special time to be reading it. The 19 days between March 2 and March 20 are observed as the Baha'i fasting period, when Baha'is around the world abstain from food and drink between sunrise and sunset for 19 days. It is a period of sacrifice, selflessness and spiritual rejuvenation leading up to the Baha'i new year, Naw Ruz.

Being so mindful of the sun's movements throughout the day - the way the colors of the sky change as the morning moves from dawn to daylight, and at night from dusk to darkness - has been one of my favorite things about the Fast this year. Taking in those moments, observing my body, and having such gratitude for each passing minute, I feel myself reconnecting to the Spirit of God that I so often find in nature. What a gift to tap into that in the heart of New York City.

This year, for me, the Fast has really been about deepening my faith in and reliance upon a power greater than myself, a Spirit of the Universe or Divine Creator - God, if you will. Part of that process has been developing my own understanding of and personal relationship with that Power. What does my God look like? What does my relationship with that God look like, and what do I want it to be? These are questions I have been reflecting on in morning prayer and meditation, as I rise with the sun and set about my day.

Despite the difficulty of going without food and drink for eight hours a day, the spiritual blessings that accompany this Fasting period have, perhaps for the first time, made the going without a meaningful spiritual practice I am truly grateful to be a part of.

 For more on the 19 day fast, visit Nineteen Days, a beautiful photo blog dedicated to this fasting period.

All photos from Nineteen Days.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

to struggle gives strength.

"We must recognise that under duress great things are born. Diamonds form in molten stone. The sweetest flowers of man's spirit have most often been watered by tears. To struggle gives strength, to endure breeds a greater capacity for endurance. We must not run away from our heartbreaks in life; we must go through them, however fiery they may be, and bring with us out of the fire a stronger character, a deeper reliance on ourselves and on the Creator Who, like a good Parent, chastizes us because He loves us and because He knows what can be made out of us and that the pain is worth the prize that can be won. Love, hate, passion, fear, sorrow, pain -they act on us and spur us on, they develop our qualities and give us colour and individuality. Why should we want to shun and abolish some of the factors that bring out the best in us, that temper our steel, that teach us to value happiness at its true worth? Can a man who has never been hungry in all his life know what a piece of …

A message from Clarissa Pinkola Estes

My friends, do not lose heart. We were made for these times. I have heard from so many recently who are deeply and properly bewildered. They are concerned about the state of affairs in our world now. Ours is a time of almost daily astonishment and often righteous rage over the latest degradations of what matters most to civilized, visionary people.

You are right in your assessments. The lustre and hubris some have aspired to while endorsing acts so heinous against children, elders, everyday people, the poor, the unguarded, the helpless, is breathtaking. Yet, I urge you, ask you, gentle you, to please not spend your spirit dry by bewailing these difficult times. Especially do not lose hope. Most particularly because, the fact is that we were made for these times. Yes. For years, we have been learning, practicing, been in training for and just waiting to meet on this exact plain of engagement.

I grew up on the Great Lakes and recognize a seaworthy vessel when I see one. Regarding awakene…

Coming Home.

Two years ago I got divorced. I did it with my head held high. After starting my marriage off with an affair I decided to change my life. I entered recovery and lived out the next 6 years sober & faithful, the best wife I could be. But we grew apart, and less than a year after our daughter was born, we split up. Then I fell in love again. I forgot what it felt like to be head over heels in love with someone, and quite honestly it knocked me off my feet. I really thought that God had finally answered all my prayers - I thought I had finally gotten what I wanted - the dream come true. 
Just about eight months ago, my boyfriend came clean after months of relapsing that I did not know about. I felt broken like I really don’t think I have ever felt before, and the healing has been slow and painful. There is no doubt that we are both doing the work, but it is hard. 
It occurred to me recently that much of the pain his relapse has brought up for me is old pain. It shouldn’t be a surprise,…