Together with prayer, fasting is a critical form of ascetic discipline in the spiritual life. Physical practices of abstinence assist in breaking forceful habits that accrue within and harden the heart over years and even over generations. However, like the phenomenon of monasticism … the aim of fasting is not to denigrate or destroy the body, which is always respected as “a temple of God” (1 Cor. 3:16). Rather, it is to refine the whole person, to render the faculties more subtle and sensitive to the outside world as well as to “the inner kingdom.”
Fasting is another way of rejecting the split between heaven and earth.
Fasting implies a sense of freedom. Fasting is a way of not wanting, or wanting less, and of recognizing the wants of others. By abstaining from certain foods, we are not punishing ourselves but instead able to preserve proper value for all foods. Moreover, fasting implies alertness. By paying close attention to what we do, to the intake of food and the quantity of our possessions, we better appreciate the reality of suffering and the value of sharing.
Fasting begins as a form of detachment; however, when we learn what to let go of, we recognize what we should hold on to.
Can you guess the author of the above quotes?