Friday, February 18, 2011


Tonight's post is a quickie, so before I get into it, here's a fun Aeneid break. I haven't interjected much of my reading into my posts so why not, it's fitting. I'm sitting here trying to compose my thoughts and wow are the winds roaring. It's been seriously distracting! Here's a quote from book 1 of the Aeneid. I'm way past book one, but it has the best description of Aeolus I've read aside from the ingenious way it was worked into the Percy Jackson series. I really enjoyed that. Yeah, it's a kid's series, but I liked it a lot!

So debating with herself, her heart inflamed, the Goddess (Juno)
came to Aeolia, to the country of storms, the place
of wild gales. Here in his vast cave, King Aeolus,
keeps the writhing winds, and the roaring tempests,
under control, curbs them with chains and imprisonment.
They moan angrily at the doors, with a mountain’s vast murmurs:
Aeolus sits, holding his sceptre, in his high stronghold,
softening their passions, tempering their rage: if not,
they’d surely carry off seas and lands and the highest heavens,
with them, in rapid flight, and sweep them through the air.
But the all-powerful Father, fearing this, hid them
in dark caves, and piled a high mountain mass over them
and gave them a king, who by fixed agreement, would know
how to give the order to tighten or slacken the reins. 

Seems like a few are running loose tonight. I hope they're back under the mountain soon enough. There's a cleansing feel to it. Like the remnants of Winter are being scattered to make way for Spring. It has been one wacky battle of the old year and the new, or as our Wiccan friends might say, between the Holly King and the Oak King.

But onto tonight: Yesterday I mused a bit about eating, tonight I'll talk about fasting. Have you ever done it? Fruit fast? Liquid fast? Water fast? Dry Fast? I've done all of them. I actually enjoy it and not just for it's weight loss benefits. I have found my Work to be that much more amped up? Powerful? Yes! Intense too! It's something even the Catholics have adopted, well, for an hour before their version of cakes and ale.

The same way you need to clear your mind, you need to clear your body. The food you eat affects the effects of your work. Food is energy. The energy you put into your body is the energy you have at your disposal when working. Do you want something slogging through your intestines for days, or do you want fresh, quick digesting fruit that makes it's way through gently, quickly and supports your level of energy? How about eating something that makes you tired because your body is so busy digesting it you can't manage anything else? When fasting, the energy otherwise used for digestion can be harnessed. This works just as well with a fast of eating only fresh fruit as it does when you abstain from everything. At least it does in my experience and the anecdotal evidence I've informally collected.

I fruit fast 24 hours before my work, especially on the Dark and Full Moons, and a few hours after. I try to do that for all of my workings, but some things can't be planned in advance. Since most of my work is done at night, it's not that big a deal to just go to sleep without eating and start fresh in the morning. My circles don't involve food and drink, so I have nothing but my grounding techniques to bring me back down from that energetic high we all love so much. If I'm really flying, I'll have some avocado when I'm done with the night's work. It's technically a fruit and it's nice and heavy. Bananas are ok, but I think the high fat content of the avo is what does the trick for me. When I'm in someone else's circle, I never eat the "cakes" offered. That started out because I'm vegan and most things offered have milk and eggs in them. I've even been to a circle where bacon was involved. >.< Now, even if it was vegan, I'd pass anyway, or take a piece and give it as an offering. I don't like to eat anything at all in circle, but I suppose if strawberries or some other fruit were part of the deal, I'd be down for it.

So what's the difference? When fasting, I feel like I have more energy available, I am more open. There is less in the way between me and deity. I'm able to raise and channel energy more easily. I am able to direct and receive energy more easily. I get results faster than I would have otherwise. My journeying is more intense, my visions are clearer, my constructs are better formed. I see more, I hear more. Intense!

Quieting the body is as helpful as quieting the mind. I know many who meditate or focus before entering sacred space. Abstaining from food (and sex) is a wonderful way to focus your physical energy, you just have to make sure to eat enough fruit and eat often enough. I never dry fast and I rarely fast with water only right out of the gate. It's easier for me to work my way up to a water fast after a few days of fruit.

Have you done it? Have you noted a difference? Are you mindful of what you eat before and after you work?


1 comment:

  1. Wow. When I was performing regularly, I would abstain from sex, cheese, pork, beef, and pasta and eat just enough to keep me from getting shaky-hungry on stage during most of tech and the run of the show. I would start this discipline during the weeks of regular rehearsal--cutting out, say, pork and beef first--and become more strict as the show's open drew closer. It was tremendously helpful. I could stay in the moment more easily, my pitch was solid, my enunciation was clear, warm-ups were more productive, and maintaining my energy level was effortless. Physically, I've rarely been healthier than when I've been performing, and I owe it entirely to everything I did to prepare myself offstage. My diet was not quite as limited as yours, but it worked for me. I'm curious to see how I'd handle a fast like the ones you've illustrated. Thank you for writing this and reminding me. :)