Jump to content

- - - - -

Does this count as 'truly' fasting?

  • Please log in to reply
3 replies to this topic

#1 R. Greene

R. Greene

    Regular Poster

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 17 posts

Posted 06 February 2012 - 08:46 PM

I have occasionally run across the discussions about fasting foods, specialty fasting foods that cost more than meat/dairy, and such.
However, I am wondering if it 'counts' as fasting when its merely the fact that you are without the means to purchase any food for your family. If its a matter of not having any means, meaning there is nothing for almsgiving and praying is obviously not helping that particular matter. Its not for the sake of any theosis that my kids are going a bit on the hungry side, so does it count? As adults they are going to remember that 'fasting' equated to a far different version than any of their other Orthodox peers can remember. To what end I am not sure. I can't ask our priest as we are currently without one. I am just wondering if going without because there is nothing is just as 'holy' as going without because its our Tradition.

#2 Rdr Daniel (R.)

Rdr Daniel (R.)

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Validating
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 705 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 06 February 2012 - 09:03 PM

Dear R. Greene,

To me, it may not be fasting but it is going without and it is a testing. Saint James speaks of the lowly brother how he should glory in is exaltation whilst the rich shall perish as grass. And Job when without not through fasting but he had nothing. And the Lord also speaks of the Rich man and Lazarus and commended Lazarus yet he did not fast through choice but as he had nothing. If going without food is done with the love of God and thankfulness for what one does have then it is can be holy (set apart for God).

And in the fasts then you are fasting whether you normally have to eat poorly or not, as it is done specificity for God.

In Christ,

#3 Father David Moser

Father David Moser


  • Moderators
  • 3,581 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Cleric

Posted 06 February 2012 - 10:02 PM

One must always remember that fasting is not the "end" or "goal". Fasting is a tool for obtaining our goal - which is the acquisition of the Holy Spirit (St Seraphim). There are many accounts in the writings of spiritual fathers where people are unable to fast for some reason and asking what to do. The overwhelming response of these fathers seems to be that when one is in such a situation where some burden of life, health or situation makes it impossible to keep the fast that it is of greater value to accept this burden and to bear it without complaint, relying on God's providence for all that you need and giving thanks for that He has given you.

If God has given to you this situation of extreme poverty then bear this burden without complaint, trust God to provide for you what is necessary and "in everything give thanks." If you do this, then you will have exceeded the value of fasting for accomplishing your goal as an Orthodox Christian.

Fr David Moser

#4 Rdr Andreas

Rdr Andreas

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,033 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 06 February 2012 - 11:44 PM

And, after the Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee, let those who have consider Isaiah chapter 58.

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users