Fasting and Retreat – Fasting and abstention from foodFasting and Abstention from food. Eating qi as a substitute for grain. “Ingesting wind, swallowing dew” CONTENT:
• Fasting and abstention from food
• Healthcare longevity fasting
• Internal alchemy fasting
• Eating qi as a substitute for grain
• Ingesting qi, swallowing dew method
Grain stands for any type of food products that can be consumed. The Chinese character-pictograph depicts what is ‘edible for humans’. In Daoism abstention from grain is also called ‘rejection of grains’, ‘breaking away from grains, ‘severing from grains, ‘ceasing grains’, ‘cutting grains’ and so on. Even though one does not eat the five grains, one however ingests Qi and energy or power. It is a Daoist belief that abstention from grains is able to kill the ‘three corpses’, the human body’s internal three types of malignant evils, and is able to extinguish the ‘nine worms’, nine types of internal parasitic worms. The phenomena of the ancient Daoist form of ‘abstention from grains’ happens naturally during the cultivation processes of ‘The Ten Months of Nourishing the Embryo, The Three Years of Suckling the Infant and the Nine Years of Facing the Wall’. It is a path a cultivator inevitably has to go through. Nowadays fasting is used in order to regulate the body and mind, and eliminate the body’s waste products. Toxicological factors improve the digestion and absorption functions of the spleen and stomach; speed up the physical metabolism, where the new replaces the old; accelerate and promote the break down of fats and restore normal functioning of the human body. These improved functions promote longevity and the opening of one’s wisdom, unleashing one’s physical potential and prolonging one’s life span.Physical illnesses are related with the feaces that pile up and ferment inside the large intestines, generating toxins and harmful substances. Nowadays people eat too much, eat disorderly and high-calorie foods which overburdens and overtaxes the intestines and stomach, and so excessive fat deposits. Through abstention from grain, one is able to get rid of the excess fat and toxins, and obtain an overall cleanse of the physical body. The intestines and the stomach will also achieve proper regulation and recuperation. The mind, soul and spirit will reach clarity, lucidity and sublimation.While abstaining from grains, some people feel very strained, and struggle to endure the hunger, suffering from extremely fatigue, anger, lethargy, dizziness and blurred vision. This is because they do not know how to absorb the energies of nature; they do not understand internal cultivation and the gathering of Qi. They are unable to stimulate the potential of nature.
Longevity through abstention from grains or fasting
The low-level ‘abstention from food’ in society is for healing and totally different from the Daoist internal alchemy methods of ‘severing form grains’.
The length of time that one fasts depends on one’s strength and what one is capable of. One may fast, for example, for three days, five days, seven days and so on. One should undergo a process of adaptation; from easy to hard, proceeding step by step and gradually elevating. According to different physical conditions, one determines whether to choose complete abstention or half-abstention as the fasting method.
Some people are allowed to eat some fruits, nuts and honey.
Different people’s fasting periods lead to different reactions:
A bitter taste, changing flavours in the mouth, bad breath, yellow or turbid urine, a dull facial complexion, no stools or loose stools, above average liver function indicators and so on. These are all natural manifestations of the human body. If this occurs, it is acceptable to drink more water, to eat fruit jam, and honey.
During the time of fasting, some people who originally have illnesses get reactions of Qi rushing to the locus of infection. In Daoist Medicine this is called war between Upright Qi and Evil Qi, Nutritive-Defensive Qi and Pernicious Qi. It is the body’s manifestation of removing the illness. Some of these manifestations of removal are obvious, some are not, nonetheless afterwards the pathological condition will take a step towards improvement or completely recover to normality. After the fast, there must be three to five days of easing back to a normal diet. To begin with, one must only eat liquid food, in order to restore the excretory system’s functions. Each fast should be separated by at least 28 days of recovery time. During the fast and recovery time, sex life is prohibited, intense workouts, and the frame of mind must remain positive, optimistic and open-minded. In the evenings, we still must continue to gather energy through Li Shi Fu’s guided sitting meditation and stillness cultivation.
Li Shi Fu says:
“If you pursue longevity, there must be constant purity inside your belly.
If you strive for immortality, there must be no feces in your intestines.’