I'd like to share some insight on the practice of fasting today. This insight comes from a rather odd source, I found it in my December 2010 issue of the South African version of Sports Illustrated.It contains an interview with one of the best batsmen in the world - South African Hashim Amla. Hashim is a devout Muslim who refuses to wear the team sponsors logo as it is an alcoholic beverage, very brave indeed. On the topic of fasting he has the following remarks:
"Fasting? I love it! Absolutely. Absolutely. I love it. What is there not to love about it? The physical discomfort? You get that in everything. You run 5km to gain fitness. It might hurt, but you know there's benefit in it. I think I've gained more out of fasting when we're playing or training than from the rest of the year. Purely from the mental side. It really is tough... it gives me a much better understanding of what I'm capable of... and what my body's capable of."
Catholic inspirational author Matthew Kelly (in his book Rediscovering Catholicism) has these words at the end of the chapter on fasting in the Catholic tradition:
"Our bodies are vehicles that God has given our souls to experience life in the material realm. Until you get a grip on your body, you will never get a grip on any area of your life."
So next time you have the opportunity to fast grab it with both hands and tame that demanding body of yours!