In the West, we have many misconceptions & errors in view when it comes to purification and fasting. We think of both requiring extreme approaches & fanatical methods - for short periods of time. But in actual fact, purification happens daily and seasonally, in spite of our damaging eating and behavioral habits.
"Health is not everything,
But nothing is worth anything without it.
There is a difference between those two temporal blessings, health and money. MONEY is the most envied but least enjoyed. HEALTH is the most enjoyed but least envied; & this superiority of the latter is still more obvious when we reflect that the poorest man would not part with health for money, but the richest would gladly part with every cent for health.
WEALTH IS HEALTH "
Your body, thankfully, is a fantastic detoxing instrument capable of ridding you of even the most harmful pesticides, additives as well as, the chemicals produced by your own negative emotions & thought patterns. However, one wouldn’t dream of continuing to drive your car at high speed, revving & flooding the engine, clogging it with cheap fuels, not replacing the water or anti-freeze when necessary. But we are happy to do this to our body! One would never live in your home for a year without cleaning it or throwing away the trash- But this is what we do to our first home - our body….
The reason why all great religions & teaching incorporate the idea of purification is because one can't experience meditation or even sit still enough to glimpse inner peace - let alone enlightenment - in a filthy temple! It’s just not physiologically possible for a toxin filled brain to fire evenly. Of course, the added benefits of well being, EASE rather than DIS EASE & living longer are reason enough to devote 2 weeks a year to cleansing this incredible instrument - YOUR BODY.
So when is the best time to purify?
No doubt we can find a thousand reasons to delay but the time of year is of critical importance - again all great religions agree at least on this, Spring and Autumn -
The reason being that they all utilize the technology and life science of natural cycles, union within and without – which is simple what the word Yoga means, and therefore what the technology of Yoga and science of life, Ayurveda, teach. The body is as affected by seasonal change as is all in Nature and that, much like the ice on the great peaks of the Himalaya, our accumulations and stores of unwanted fats and toxins are going to melt in Spring and be stored (solidify) in Autumn - Some may even be experiencing this liquid in the form of sinusitis or hay fever, your body may be pushing these out through your biggest organ your skin in the form of a rash or diarrhea - if you're lucky! For most, we have abused our bodies for so long they no longer have these options available, so our stores are staying there, forming the basis of a tumor, polluted glands or lymph, livers and kidneys so over-loaded they are struggling to function normally let alone spring clean!
Ok so now that you're onboard, where to begin –
At brave we will begin the brave Cleansing Regime the first week of consistently warmer temperatures
brave Pitta Salt has organic rose geranium, mandarin orange, Clary Sage and peppermint....it's a perfect way to draw the acids and toxins you are releasing out of your body if you're prone to heat - scrub and soak in it! we also have a pure Milk for those delicate High Vata people and a herby, energizing Kapha mix that will clear your sinus and nasal congestion...
Stage 1 –
3 days: THURS/FRI eat your main meal at midday, lightly & mindfully i.e. small easily digested meals with no meat, choose either a protein or a carbohydrate per meal - no combining, drink lots of water or warm Brave tea. If you have Brave dosha lists, eat only things on your "best or small amounts" columns. Eat only the lightest meal at night, for example soup, a small portion of veggies etc
SAT - eat your main meal at midday, lightly & mindfully. Skip your evening meal entirely & replace with 2 tablespoons of Pysillium seed husk mixed in half a glass of juice or if you are not wheat intolerant or high kapha - All Bran Flakes or similar high fibre grain with WARM MILK ONLY.
1 DAY : SUNDAY on waking
warm water with lemon or Brave Tea. Take 2 tablespoons of Pysillium seed husk mixed in half a glass of juice, then have liquids only for this one day ONLY. In addition to Brave Tea these should be only fresh fruit & veggie juices DILUTED BY 1/3 with fresh spring water. Our bodies are not designed to process concentrated juices without their fiber etc & MUST BE DILUTED. Ideally, a mix of fresh CARROT, CABBAGE & CELERY with 1/3 spring water if you have a juicer, or simply buy a juice of your choice add some fresh ginger & lemon & dilute. If you have high kapha or are suffering from kapha conditions – hay fever, weight gain, infection, eczema, psoriasis - grapefruit, cranberry or pomegranate with a teaspoon of fresh honey is best. DRINK EVERY 2 HOURS/ YOU MUST INGEST 2 PINTS throughout the day –
DO NOT SKIP You need the liquid to begin to clear the channels of the body.
DO NOT ALSO OVERDO LIQUID – it’s dangerous and can cause renal failure
STAGE 3 –
3 DAYS (FOR THOSE WHO ARE IN 3RD-7TH STAGE RECOVERY/WEAK/ON MEDS) OR 7 DAYS:
ON MON only on waking warm water with lemon or Brave Tea, 2 tablespoons of Pysillium seed husk mixed in half a glass of juice. A big glass of juice before 9 o' clock. 9 - 9.30 - eat an apple very slowly chew well until 'liquid' – FOR THIS FIRST MORNING ONLY – THEN 11.30 - 1 pm - Raw salad of finely grated carrot, cabbage, apple or pear with a dressing of a suitable oil, honey and vinegar as per your Brave dosha list. 6-8 pm - papaya or any fruits with finely grated ginger (excluding melon which should always be eaten alone and never at night) as per your Dosha list OR ANY SOUP of your choice
Thereafter TUES/WED/THURS/FRI (OPTIONAL - SAT/SUN)
7.30 - 9.00 - a grated salad of 2 to 3 fruits and 1 veg with sprinkled sunflower/pumpkin seed /almonds eg. Banana, apple, orange and beetroot or carrot; or pear, beetroot, banana and papaya. A HABIT TO KEEP FOR LIFE remembering that in Winter –
you should gently WARM the fruit & veg!
11.30 - 1pm - Raw salad of finely grated carrot, cabbage, apple or pear with a dressing of a suitable oil, honey and vinegar as per your Brave dosha list.
6-8pm - papaya or any fruits with finely grated ginger (excluding melon which should always be eaten alone and never at night) as per your Dosha list OR ANY SOUP of your choice
DRINK OR EAT EVERY 2 HOURS/ YOU MUST STILL INGEST AT LEAST A PINT throughout the day - DO NOT SKIP EATING OR DRINKING You need the liquid to begin to clear the channels of the body.Don’t eat when you are thirsty or drink when you are hungry DON’T DRINK MORE THAN ½ GLASS LIQUID WITH FOOD – EVER
WEEK 2 OPTIONAL
STAGE 4 – ALSO FOR THOSE DOING THE SHORTER 3 DAY OPTION
on waking warm water with lemon or Brave Tea, 2 tablespoons of Pysillium seed husk mixed in half a glass of juice. A big glass of juice before 9 o' clock. You must PRACTICE ABHYANGA (Yogic massage) AT LEAST 3 times this week (exfoliate with a DRY BRUSH and massage with appropriate dosha oil - see our group files for this and our tea recipe)
7.30 - 9.00 - a grated salad of 2 to 3 fruits and 1 veg with sprinkled sunflower/pumpkin seed /almonds e.g. Banana, apple, orange and beetroot or carrot; or pear, beetroot, banana and papaya. A HABIT TO KEEP FOR LIFE remembering that in Winter – you should gently WARM the fruit & veg!
11.30 - 1 pm - Raw salad of your choice you can use a warm salad dressing & lightly toasted seeds & nuts - or a bowl of steamed or stir fry veg, ideally from your Brave list you can add nuts & seeds & a warm dressing.
OR You can now gradually come off the regime by adding, ideally to your lunch - a protein or carbohydrate - DO NOT MIX THE TWO e.g. baked potatoes, rice, couscous, pasta -
or cottage cheese, soya, fish / chicken etc
6-7 pm - papaya or any fruits with finely grated ginger (excluding melon which should always be eaten alone & never at night) as per your Dosha list OR ANY SOUP of your choice
Again - DRINK OR EAT EVERY 2 HOURS/ YOU MUST STILL INGEST AT LEAST A PINT throughout the day - DO NOT SKIP EATING OR DRINKING You need the liquid to begin to clear the channels of the body.
Don’t eat when you are thirsty or drink when you are hungry
Continue your Tea, Brave Tea or other, & with your 2 tablespoons of Pysillium seed husk mixed in half a glass of juice if you are having only one bowel movement a day & no diarrhea is present. You can also now add veg soup or any other tea. If you really need to, you can add one cup of black coffee per day. You can continue week 2’s schedule if your body tells you to do so -
Please DON'T BECOME OBSESSIVE
food should be uncomplicated & enjoyable \ Rest, relax, read, walk,
PRACTICE MORE ASANA, PRANAYAMA & NIDRA than usual,
KEEP A HAPPY MIND & positive view.
Remember to never drink more than a 1/2 glass of liquid 10 minutes before, or 20 mins after your meal, NEVER WITH so as not to dilute your digestive juices.
Eat COLOUR, eat LIVE, CHEW YOUR SOLIDS until they are LIQUIDS, CHEW YOUR LIQUIDS as if they are SOLIDS
If you are in the early stages of recovery please contact us first and we will send you a Regime adapted to your condition
If you're presently under the direction of a doctor, consult with them FIRST before embarking on the programme.
Practice ABHYANGA (self massage) regularly. Your body stores toxins in its fats and oils. Drinking water can help to re-hydrate, help the body’s systems optimize but it CANNOT detox your system. Only oil can help the body eliminate oil. Self massage with an appropriate oil to YOUR constitution will expedite your cleansing process. If you are not near to Brave or able to find Ayurvedically blended oils you can use the following:
GRAPE SEED - ALL constitutions
Sesame or Nut - Vata ONLY
Coconut or Olive - Pitta only
Dry Brush followed by Grapeseed oil with black pepper & Eucalyptusor dry massage with chickpea flour - Kapha ONLY
Kitchari is Yoga & Ayurveda's ideal healing food, during recovery as well as cleansing. It's often central to treatment, a mono-diet or fast, as a 'complete' easy to digest meal it encourages the healing process while giving the body sufficient substance and fiber to make elimination easy.
In India, it's used much like we use a hearty Chicken Soup during illness in the West - only it's much kinder being vegetarian :) Essentially a Kitchari is any dish combining rice with a legume and as with most traditional dishes, there are as many variations as there are families, often vegetables a variety of veggies, spices, rice grains, coconut, nuts are added - the rule being though - that they are easy to digest this is why mung bean is the most traditional, because they are the easiest legume to digest and are a tonic for the GI tract due to their astringency. This time tested formula, centuries old, is a complete protein, rich in fiber, cleansing to the digestive tract, and will act to bulk up stool for easier elimination.
To maximize the many benefits eat it for several meals in a row, such as lunch and dinner on the same day. Once you experience the benefits of kitchari, you'll see how feeling good again is just a few steps away.
Here are a few brave recipes :
Recipe 1 - Serves 2-3 people
2 cups basmati rice 1 cup split mung dahl
1 cup chopped french green beans* 1 cup diced carrots*
2 tbsp ghee or grape seed oil 1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp mustard seeds (avoid if high Pitta) 5 tsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp grated ginger 5 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cardamom powder 1 tsp coriander powder
2 tsp rock or sea salt 1 bunch finely chopped fresh coriander
Squeeze of Lemon or lime
+ You Can use any other green and root vegetable combination that suits your constitution.
Method: Always wash both the rice and the mung dahl until the water runs clear. It’s not necessary but better to soak both the dahl and the rice for a few hours or even over-night. Wash the veggies and chop into similar small sizes for even cooking. In a saucepan, warm the ghee and add the spices - mustard seeds, fennel seeds and cumin seeds. Sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the rice and mung dahl and sauté for further 2 minutes. Add the grated ginger, turmeric, cardamom powder, coriander powder, raisins, carrots and greens beans. Stir and sauté for 1 minute.
Add 6 to 7 cups of water and bring to the boil. Add the rock or sea salt and reduce to a medium-low heat. Cover and cook until the dahl and rice is tender – between 30 to 45 minutes. During the last process, stir the pot now and then and check if you need to add more water to keep the Kitchari moist. Before serving stir in some finely chopped fresh coriander. Squeeze on the juice of the lemon or lime and allow each person to add their own according to their taste.
Recipe 2 – a more western recipe :)
1 cup Basmati Rice
1/2 cups yellow lentil /dahl
4 leaves Bay Leaf
1/2 tsp Cinnamon ( replace with hing /asofoetida)
1/4 tsp Cloves (replace with Tumeric)
1 inch Ginger (Fresh)
2 tbsp Grape seed Oil or Ghee
1/4 tsp Salt (Mineral Salt)
4 cups WARM Water
Method: Always wash both the rice and the mung dahl until the water runs clear. Wash the veggies and chop into similar small sizes for even cooking. It’s not necessary but better to soak both the dahl and the rice for a few hours or even over-night.
Add the water and bring to a boil,this should be a gentle rolling boil. Use a soup ladle to regularly scoop off any foam that forms on the top. Strain out the liquid, and add another 4c of fresh water and return to a boil. Add the ginger, cinnamon and cloves. Boil gently for 10 mins. Be careful not to over-cook. Add rice and any remaining ingredients to broth. Stir. Cover and leave on the lowest heat for 20-25 minutes or until grains are tender.
Recipe 3 - Traditional Kichari Serves: 4
2 cups yellow Dahl lentils
1 cup basmati rice
6 cups water
2 Tbs. ghee or Coconut oil
¾ tsp. sea salt
1/8th tsp. asofoetida (Hing)
½ tsp. ground black pepper
½ tsp. ground ginger
1 Tbs. ground cumin
1 Tbs. ground coriander
1 Tbs. turmeric
½ cup freshly chopped coriander
Bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Add Dahl and rice, bring to a gentle, rolling boil for 5 – 10 mins This should be a gentle rolling boil. Use a soup ladle to regularly scoop off any foam that forms on the top.
Now cover and turn down the heat to very low (2) for 20-25 minutes. Check every few minutes and give a quick stir (don’t over stir our it will become starchy)
In a separate small pan heat your ghee or coconut oil to a medium heat and the spices stirring so they don’t burn. Cook the spice infused oil for a few minutes to release their healing properties.
Now add the spiced oil to the Kichari, leaving it on the top of the soupy mix. Cover and cook another 5- 10 minutes on the lowest heat. If you have things to do you can even turn the stove plate off and leave the pot on it covered for 25 – 30 mins but be sutre to not lift the lid before or you will release the heat needed to cook the Kichari evenly throughout. It’s nice to sprinkle the coriander over the top and serve while still in the pot .
Traditionally, Kichari is served with Riatha (yoghurt with grated cucumber and a sprinkle of cumin)
IF DAIRY IS A PROBLEM YOU CAN USE COCONUT YOGHURT, once you are past the first phase of brave Spring Cleanse
If you need support like if u get tempted by the evil fast food tokoloshi :) we are here for you – just inbox.
Thank you to Turiyana Acharyia for the inspiration and knowledge. We have phsyllium husk, Tongue scrapers and dosha oils at Brave.
Om Amritayeshwari Namah
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copyright © Brave Foundation Trust 2017