Ekadashi (11th day of moon) had me up at 3.30 and Rejilal, the manager of Organic Villa drove me to the beautiful 2000 year old temple where Janardhan diety was bathed and dressed in a gold tissue fabric- red lipped and black eyed. To see him one has to crouch and the oil lamps create an illusion of him smiling at you. Its a no photography zone and I find my attention sharper to recall the details.
Fasting on water is most beneficial on this day: Na gaayathrya para manthra: na mathu para dhaivatham: na ganagasya paramam theertham: na ekadasya samam vratham” (There is no mantra superior to the Gayatri mantra. There is no God superior to the mother, there is no water purifying or superior than River Ganges and there is no vrat or austerity or fast, holy or superior than the Ekadasi )
To add a spin on the fast I took a train ride to the southernmost tip- Kanyakumari – and spent an hour on the vivekanand rock with its emerald sea and delicious sea breeze. Read more about that here
Then a detox began- mild fever, loss of hunger and i slept for 48 hours… both tongue and lip began to show improvement: sticking to raw food is helping. My body does not want cooked food. And there are plenty of options… mango avocado smoothies, fig icecream, coconut juice, salads… a day later I wanted nothing – just water and so the rest of the week has been fasting once more.
I live in very peaceful parts- my porch faces a large bamboo grove and a wattle boundary wall. Lots of wild flowers grow in pots and sitting here give a sense of wellness- the surf can be heard if the crows don’t caw so much. On the rare cloud free days the sun and moon rise in direct line of sight of my window.
Fasting on my own is mostly a blur of sleep, looking at my lip and tongue, drinking some water and more sleep.
Somehow this fast is far more gracious than the one in Cochin. I feel at ease and there are no irritants.
Have located an organic store in trivandrum to get my supplies and feasting on fruits has been energizing. I have done a lot of journaling to look at my waning and waxing interest in writing. My panic at the life ahead. All I can share is the world within is as elaborate and complex as the one outside.
A small note on the cooked food experience- Rosie, my beautiful and wonderful caretaker worries about my food habits and makes dosas with carrots and tapioca and coconut dishes for me. Its hard to refuse all that love and there were times i wanted to have it too- well it is heavy beyond belief. It just lacks the liveliness of fruit. And funnily once it digests, it brings on sharp hunger for more, like an addiction.
The next and final stage of this healing trip is with Sivanand ashram- 80 kms downstream, next to a dam. I hope to connect with the Naturopathy teacher and do some quality yoga.
Lip update: from pretty fierce scabs to mild ones… i see the outer rim of the lip healed.
Half of my tongue is also healed.
More fasting needed. Ekadashi coming up in 48 hours!!