Here I’d like to serve up the five-course banquet of my personal fast/retreat over the last four days here in Eudlo on the Sunshine Coast.
Up in the hinterland, I have stayed here at the Chenrezig Institute in a private hut, and not been approached by anyone – no reception or admin, not even a note on arrival (I think there was supposed to be a note actually!) – but it was refreshingly open, prepared, and trust-based. I had paid ahead, and all was faithfully left for me 🙂 . It’s presently Spring-time; in these parts it’s spectacularly refreshing. Some stunning views!
As for my activity, I started a juice-fast three days earlier while at home, and have continued it here. My key objectives are: physical rejuvenation (a 7-day juice-fast), personal respite and detachment from home life, spiritual incubation. I took advice from a medical expert regarding the fast, researched my location options (I had earlier inquired at a Christian retreat centre but they were booked out and told me about Chenrezig Buddhist Institute) and did a retreat-schedule which included planned and optional activities, but especially which books to take ☺.
Everything has gone to plan! It was my “Abraham’s ram in the bush” experience which confirmed the Lord’s hand of blessing. The neighbouring suburb was Palmwoods, and there I found Dave and Crystal from “Crystal Organics” – wooh! Dave gave me a tour of their rockin’ operation – beautiful organic produce – and supplied me with a stunning “juicing box” of organic leafy greens and such. Pick up time next morning was set for 6:30am, so they could pull the produce out from the soil just minutes before pick up – so fresh! Please do use these guys if you have a local organic-produce need – they’re as good as you’ll ever find! http://www.crystalorganics.org/ .
My routine has been more or less as follows: awake, make a juice, relax/read/stroll, drink water – repeat. Add to this a coffee-enema twice-daily, and occasional coconut oil-pulling. I also skipped out for a couple of massages, and had my local-dwelling Dad visit one evening. Various other soul-inspiring events transpired too, such as this and other blogs and revelations for personal and family projects (such as Dad’s book publication).
Today is the last day of my retreat, and I feel pretty amazing. I haven’t taken food for five and half days, but the vege-juices have nourished me supremely so that hunger pangs have been very rare, and sleep has been deep and refreshing. I’ve also seen ailments healed. I had had a persistent cough for about month but that has been gone since the second day. I had been having back pain upon awaking in the morning: that also disappeared. I can see a clear link between the food and my ailments! Even now I’m not hungry and I haven’t had a juice for about 11 hours (I’m due for one though). For those interested in learning about the ancient-modern practice of fasting, one resource is Paul Bragg’s The Miracle of Fasting, and here’s a link found for easing off the fast wisely http://www.allaboutfasting.com/breaking-a-fast.html . I highly recommend it; it’s a largely lost human practice which never ought to have been considered dispensable. [Four days post-fast: One additional thing worth mentioning is that I cannot overstate how intensely boosted are my flavour sensors! ALL food, including water, literally has a double-punch of flavour now. I’ve been truly amazed; I can say that I only remember tasting food this way as a child! Also, the underlying condition causing the cough I mentioned above does not seem to be completely cured (or it has returned), but it’s certainly vastly milder].
To round-out this blog, I’d like to include a little bit of Buddhism education. In addition to the iconography, I’ve included snapshots from Chenrezig’s Garden of Enlightenment stupa information-board. There is much to learn about yourself, your own beliefs, and of course others, by appreciating what different religions teach.
So, as a Christian departs a Buddhist Retreat, does he pray a blessing over it? Of course! After all, it was an immense blessing to me, and I certainly wish for it to be a blessing to others in the same way. I now pray a blessing over that facility and its administrators, in Jesus’ name. Amen 🙂 .