Welcome back !
I hope you read my last post on all the wonderful changes 100 days of Nirahara can bring to your life (Link below).
The response has been overwhelming and I thank you for taking the time to learn more about Nirahara. Naturally, you may have a lot of questions regarding this practice. I have made an attempt below to address the most pertinent ones. I am sure you will have many more questions beyond these and I promise to keep updating this post as I receive more questions (kindly subscribe to this website to be notified of new additions).
Question 1: What are the origins of Nirahara?
Answer: Nirahara is a Sanskrit term which is made up of two words Nir + Ahara. "Nir" means no or without and "Ahara" means food. Literally, the term implies: 'Living without food' (apologies in advance to Sanskrit scholars if I am oversimplifying things here).
We have all heard stories and anecdotes of advanced yogis and spiritually advanced aspirants who survived for immensely long time periods without relying on food. My guru has brought back this lost science and perfected it for modern day human beings like you and me. The most beautiful thing about Nirahara is - one doesn't need to leave family and work and meditate alone in the wilderness to receive the benefits. Completing the 22-day program is enough to awaken that intelligence within you. For official website and right context, please also see link below.
Question 2: Is Nirahara suitable/practical for people with full day jobs?
Answer: Let me address this first by providing my own background. I am a 35y old male of Indian descent, happily married for 9 years and I have a 4y old daughter as well. I work a corporate job from 9 to 6 in New York city. My job also requires travelling around 30 days a year. Client events including group lunches and dinners are frequent as well. In addition, I have been on two separate week long vacations with extended family since I started Nirahara (no, I did not have any solid food on vacation either).
The point is - Don't think there are only certain lifestyles, jobs, roles which are suitable for Nirahara.
Question 3: Are there any qualifications to be able to benefit from Nirahara?
Answer: Please understand, as per the source (my Enlightened guru who designed the technique, Sri Nithyananda Paramashivam), there are no qualifications in terms of age, gender orientation, race, religion, body type, lifestyle etc. in order for you to benefit from this wonderful technique.
The only qualification if I can think of one is - Do you feel fed up enough with your current life to break away from your personal prison of impossibilities and make significant and lasting positive changes in your life?
Question 4: Why avoid solid food in the first place?
Answer: The process of digesting solid complex foods puts a lot of strain on your system. Think about it - First you have to chew and grind it in the mouth. Then all the muscles in your food pipe have to push the food forward. Your stomach has to create so much bile to digest solids and not to mention the churning and mixing these foods will need from your stomach and intestines. Is it really surprising that you feel a sharp dip in your wakefulness/attentiveness after having a heavy meal? All that oxygen rich blood which was going towards the brain for cognitive function is urgently redirected towards your gut.
Your whole digestive system may be running on overdrive after years (maybe decades) of over eating too complex, hard to digest solid foods leaving very little conscious energy for other important tasks such as intelligent decision making, healing your body etc.
Nirahara will give your tired overused system a much needed break while redirecting more and more energy towards awareness. This extra available energy when combined with Guru Mantra (conscious connection with Guru) and Meditation (inward withdrawal of senses) will replenish and boost your Awareness (your ability to relate with the here and now).
Question 5: Do I need to take Haritaki. How does it help?
Answer: Please, please take my word for it. Even if this blog doesn't motivate you to try Nirahara, let Haritaki be the one thing you take away from it. Anyone who needs physical or physiological healing should be taking Haritaki powder every day. Here is a link which lists some of the benefits of this wonder medicine.
Question 6: Can I combine Nirahara with exercise and strength training?
Answer: Except walking and being active, I didn't add any special exercise while being on Nirahara but I don't see a reason why it wouldn't work. Just stay hydrated, take in more liquids and don't overdo it. Let your intelligence guide you.
Question 7: Will completing Nirahara once lead to positive changes in my habit patterns?
Answer: Short answer is a definitive "Yes". Since the process intensifies your awareness and intelligence, you will be able to explore deeper into the root causes of your habit patterns and make changes as needed. This doesn't just apply to food. I have been able to break many destructive habits (too many are still work in progress as per my wife) in so many areas of my life by simply and sincerely following Nirahara.
Question 8: How often should I do Nirahara?
Answer: It all depends on what your starting goal is (by the way, once the higher intelligence is awakened, your perspective and goals will also upgrade). You can do Nirahara for multiple reasons. The list can include one or more of the following:
General health and well-being
Overcoming compulsive food habits
Healing for diseases and disorders
And Ultimately Enlightenment (As per my Guru's words, I am obviously not there yet.)
I started with numbers 2 and 3 but have quickly moved on to 5 and beyond. The recommended program is one cycle, but you can decide how often you want to do it. Some people do one cycle every few months (such as once every 6 months). Others are lifelong Niraharis. Let your intelligence guide you and trust it to lead you towards fulfillment.
Thank you again for taking the time to read about this wonderful technique. Let your lives be enriched by the beautiful gift of Nirahara.
P.S. Still not convinced. Here is some extra motivation.