21 day water fast: introduction

Exactly three years ago, I began a journey into what I can only describe as one of the special events of my life: a 21-day water fast. Even now, it remains as fresh and vivid in my memory as if it were yesterday… I documented my experiences in a journal, something I’ll be reproducing here in daily posts over the next three weeks. I don’t suggest that this is how a 21-day water fast ‘should’ develop, for every fast is unique, with its own ‘personality’. I’m quite sure that if I were to do another extended fast today, it would feel quite different. I also made this little introductory video: Made on the penultimate day of the fast, the video shows how much the fast had taken out of me. Over the last three years, subsequent fasts have impacted on me quite differently on a physical level, and I’ve tended to remain much stronger, with higher energy levels throughout. Instead, fasting has usually led me to deeper places emotionally and spiritually. This isn’t too surprising, as it’s necessary to cleanse the outer physical ‘shell’ of our being before we can really see what lies deeper within. Looking at it like this, the 21-day water fast documented here really was a turning point in my life.

3 responses to “21 day water fast: introduction”

  1. Lauren Rothman Avatar
    Lauren Rothman

    Hi Tallis! I love your website – very informative. Have you completed another long fast since this one?

    I’m also wondering if you can comment on the efficacy of doing separate 10 or 14-days fasts as opposed to one 21 or 30 day one? For chronic illness. I’m thinking it’s not a good idea to try to start at 21 days, as it seems extremely challenging for a newcomer to fasts.

    1. Tallis Barker, D.Phil. Avatar
      Tallis Barker, D.Phil.

      Hi Lauren,
      Glad you’ve found the website to be useful :-). When it comes to the efficacy of fasts, longer is almost always better. In other words, two 10-day fasts are less likely to elicit the same degree of healing as one 20-day fast. A lot depends on the specific issue. While certain issues do respond to shorter fasts (such as many gut issues), other issues really do require at least 21 if not 30 days (such as many neurological issues).
      Yes, long fasts can feel extremely daunting to a newcomer, but I’ve coached numerous clients through 30- and 40-day fasts without them having had any previous fasting experience at all. It boils down mostly to knowing the reason why you’re fasting, and having the support to reach your goal.
      All the best,

  2. And so I found my way back to your journal’s trailhead, answering more of my previously-sent questions, and making me feel great that you likely will have time and energy to answer my other questions
    Hopefully either your words, or mine plus yours (about what to recommend to the stressed, ill elder woman who prompted my finding you and your work) will help focus her energies to the most healing path possible.
    Thanks for your thoroughness and good organization… and patience to read my meandering comments.
    Wishing You Well, ~Monica

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