Breatharianism and Sun-gazing

Breatharianism, sun-gazing and other forms of non-food subsistence have had a resurgence in popularity in the last decade, producing a mixture [1] of reception[2]. In particular, proponents of these practices state that they’re able to survive without eating food for elongated periods of time (some claiming, with evidence to their credit, that they can abstain from food wholly [3]). Collective Evolution has a wonderful article on the topic [4]:

Prahlad Jani

Prahlad Jani is a local of Ahmedabad, India, who claims that at the age of 11, the Hindu goddess Amba appeared to him and told him that he would no longer have to eat food. He has apparently lived in a cave since the 1970s, and claims not to have eaten anything for most of his 81 years (as of 2012).

Jani was tested in 2003 and in 2010 at Ahmedabad’s Sterling Hospital by Dr. Sudhir Shah and his large team of doctors. Dr. Shah is a consultant neurologist who has been practicing for 20 years, as well as a professor and department head of neurology at KM School of PG Medicine and Research.

During the first test, which took place in 2003, Jani was monitored 24/7 by hospital staff and video cameras, where it was confirmed that Jani neither ate nor drank. He also did not show any physiological changes which, according to modern day medicine, should be impossible. This test took place over a 10 day period. Although it might not seem like a significant amount of time, to go 10 days without food and water and not experience any physiological changes is actually quite astounding.
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He was tested again at Sterling Hospital in 2010 from April 22nd to May 6th. This time, he was observed by thirty-five researchers from the Indian Defence Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences, among other organizations. This time, Jani was observed to not eat or drink for two weeks. As with the previous test, he exhibited no deleterious effects from this abstention.

This truly is unbelievable, and goes against everything we know about both human physiology and the nutritional requirements of the body.

As one might expect, neither these tests nor their results were published in medical journals. The studies have also generated a lot of criticism. The main arguments against these tests were, however, quite weak in my opinion. One argument holds that Jani escaped the scrutiny of the hospital staff and video cameras with the assistance of his disciples, and that he did in fact eat/drink something. Yet hospital staff maintains this is impossible because he was monitored around the clock, as per the requirements of the study.

Even with these criticisms, the evidence is solid and appears to correspond with a known siddhi.

A statement from a scientific group (which included the Defence Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences) given to ABC News back in 2012 reads as follows:

We realized that, if this whole phenomenon really exists in a human being even for 15 days, it would have immense application in unraveling secrets of medical science and its application for human welfare.

Instead of ignoring this case, we selected to investigate further, in a rational and scientific way. We again make it clear that the purpose of this study was not to prove or disprove a person, but to explore a possibility in science and study a new phenomenon. (source)

It’s an interesting case, isn’t it?
Michael Werner

Another case comes from a doctor of chemistry named Michael Werner, who is the managing director of a pharmaceutical research institute in Switzerland. This man claims to not have eaten any solid food since January 1st, 2001. He was studied in a ten-day observational test in October 2004 by the intensive care unit at a hospital in Switzerland, and as with Jani, displayed no significant or dangerous physiological changes. These results have yet to be published, however.

Dean Radin offers an insightful explanation for why these results might not ever be published, and for why not much attention has been given to this phenomenon:

Perhaps the most curious aspect of the breatharian tests is the in-your-face nature of the claimed phenomenon and yet an almost complete lack of interest from the scientific community. If it is possible to live well without eating food, this ought to be easy to demonstrate, and if it held up, the scientific and social consequences would be astounding.

The fact is, as with many other observed phenomena that science can’t explain, most researchers regard things like this as ridiculous and extremely unlikely, and therefore don’t even take the time to look into them. They dismiss the claims out of hand rather than approaching them with scientific neutrality and curiosity.

For more on this, check out Collective Evolution’s original article. If you want to find other ways to utilize energy to your benefit, check out our article on self-healing here! Or, check out our article on using crystals within these practices!

Sources:
[1]Fractal Enlightenment
[2]How Stuff Works
[3]The Times of India
[4]Collective Evolution
[Original Image]PixaBay

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