I am not much religious, never gave it much thought. But I belong to a family with high religious beliefs and they tend to become racist against their own son because of the religious differences. All my life my parents kept asking me why on earth you cannot spend a single day without regular food, aren’t you religious? Well, I see people more happy about the festivals rather than the fasts. Besides, chewing was my favorite exercise. But one day, to prove myself as a part of the family. I gathered all my strengths and for the first time, I intended to fast.
It was the Navratri time when all young girls and boys gather in a big ground with two fancy sticks to join a live tinder app. A day earlier, I asked my parents about the significance of fasting. They told me that fasting is a way to thank God, to show how grateful you are. I see fasting a way to protest. Just like children don’t eat to protest to their parents to get what they want. Citizens go on fast to protest against the government, either to show them how unhappy they are or to pressurize them to get what they want. Technically, it is a kind of hunger strike.
They said, “Okay if you don’t think that way, you can use it to fulfill a wish”. Well, fasting can fulfill political demands because all are running for a single cause. Imagine how hard it would be for a ruler to manage when everyone has a personal demand. Besides, my wish was already married to someone else for the last 6 years. And it would have taken two fasts, one for her divorce and another for her running towards me with open arms in slow motion. Once she told me that she used to fast on Mondays to get a nice and loving husband. Now she keeps another fast for his long life. In other words, to keep him alive. Isn’t it a bad deal to get a non-durable husband with such efforts who later demands so much maintenance.
Anyway, before my parents could blow the shit out of me; I announced it as a birthday gift to my dad and he couldn’t be happier. I cheered, “Yippie!! It is the fasting time, lets fast hard!!” and my parents’ reacted like they heard something for the first time.
Preparing for the fast, I deactivated my Facebook account because I found it painful to unfollow all the food and restaurant pages. I am sure Mark Zuckerberg never fasts, otherwise he would have appreciated a dedicated “on-fast” preference in Facebook profile. In which its algorithm would prevent all food-related posts on the newsfeed. Half of the day I was lying on the bed trying to digest all extra I ate last night following the advice of my younger sister, who is on fast on every alternate day of the week and is the fattest member of our family. The fast appeared to be the slowest day of my life. At first, I was regretting my decision. I was feeling like I am attempting a difficult problem in a maths exam knowing the problem is optional and I have the choice to skip it and now it is questioning my intelligence. But I chose to not give up. Slowly it became fine. The trick was to not to think about it, and it was working. Almost the entire day passed and when my inner motivation was at its peak, one of my cousins appeared with a yellow cup of Maggi noodles. Right then, I truly learned how subconscious mind works. Like when you fall from the bed while sleeping and your hands automatically brace you to reduce the impact. Unintentionally, I grabbed the fork, rolled it and put it into my mouth; but before I could chew, I realized I was on fast. Then for next one minute, keeping the noodles in my mouth, I was trying to understand if I broke the fast or not.
My parents never asked me to fast again and to this date, I question myself what failed me? The Maggi, my subconscious mind or my trick (which should have been the other way around, to keep thinking about food). To sum it up, I’d say it is a matter of personal sentiment; but what is the harm in pointing out the problems in something you can’t do. A wise man once said, if you fail in something, make fun of it, at least you’ll make winners insecure.
So here I am, categorizing the type of fasts into three: Impossible, Next to impossible and ‘How the hell can that happen?’
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