I fast secretly for ekadasi throwing the lunch food given by mother. Is it right?
A girl devotee (Name hidden) asked like this:
“Hare Krishna….i am your servant and i offer my humble obeisances to you.. i want to you ask about ekadashi fast.. i m not beloging to a devoted family.. my parents are not devotees.. in my home no one can fast ok ekdashi.. i want to fast on ekadashi.. i fast on ekadashi secretly my mother dont know that i fast on ekadashi secertly.. sometime i fast stricty with no water but due to my constipation problm i take only water on ekadashi.. my family also eat meat on ekadashi, when my mother ask me about lunch or dinner, i mostly tell a lie just bcz i fast, or if she forcefully give me then i put that food in dustbin but in heart when i do this i feel very very guilty.. my sisters know that i do fast secretly if they are presnt they eat my lunch and dinner secretly.. but my mom when give me tea i also discard it.. but when i do this i think about cow that she is my mother and i m not value it by discrading the milk.. is i m doing wrong or ri8? What should i do in that cases bcz when ever i discard food or tea i feel so much guilty. plz answer my question guru.. plzz its a humble request to you.”
While appreciating the intention and efforts by you to follow ekadasi fasts, the way you follow to discard the food is not good.
There are many ways to give away the food.
There are beggars, orphans, poor who are in need of food. You can give the lunch/ dinner to them. If you find the location of the existence of such beggars, you can gift them with respects.
When your family is cooking meat on ekadasis, I think that you can relax your strict following the ekadasi fast.
What you are doing now is that you fast secretly for ekadasi and eat the food cooked by your family members on other days including meat. You also take tea or coffee.
Here, I like to remind that all these recommendations/ restrictions are ONLY for those who like to lead a devotion dominated life. The choice is yours and no one compels you to follow the regulations. Read further keeping this point in mind:
Actually, when we start fasting for ekadasi, we are expected to quit meat, tea, coffee, onion, garlic, etc., on other days. In your case, you are unable to quit them on other days.
So, you are fast secretly for ekadasi and commit violations on other days. Am I right?
Some devotees may argue that you atleast follow restrictions for two days a month. But, they forget that the purpose of these restrictions itself is to make you follow all the days.
Let me give an example here. Have you heard Lord Ayyappa or Manikanta or Karthikeya? The devotees of these demigods have a systemfor decades. They follow 48 days vrath (restrictions) every year and visit the Sabari Mala in Kerala or Karthikeya’s temples. During these 48 days, they should avoid physical interactions with wife, avoid intoxicants, avoid materialistic life, etc. They should wear black clothes and sing the prayers during these 48 days (One mandal). After following this period, they visit the temple and finish their vrath of 48 days.
Muslims observe Ramzan fast for 30 days. During this month, they should perform many dhaan (gifts) to the needy. They have to control their senses.
Why these 48 days or 30 days of rectified life?
Simply it means that these 48 or 30 days of spiritual way of life will continue for the remaining period of every year. When we follow a custom for more than 30 days, it becomes a habit. So, after Ramzan, the muslims are expected to follow the similar way of life observed during Ramzan month. Similarly, the devotees of Lord Ayyappa or Manikanta or Karthikeya, etc are expected to follow the similar restricted way of life during other days of every year. It should become their habit.
Ekadasi fasts are also like that. If you follow ekadasi fasts for a few ekadasis, you are expected to follow similar way of life with regulations during other days also.
In your case, it is difficult to follow during normal days because of your family customs.
So, you have two choices only:
(1) Speak to your family frankly and decisively that they should cooperate with your following ekadasi fast and also avoiding prohibited things on other days. Get their cooperation. Fight for that from now. Follow sathyagraha till they agree. Then follow ekadasi fasts boldly without throwing the foods. And, avoid meat, coffee, tea, onion, garlic, etc during other days and take the foods that do not contain them and say NO to other foods. Let them cook for you and make them agree through frank discussions.
This is the best method to follow the recommendations. The cooperation of your family is important. When they seek a groom for you, insist them to see only vegetarians and/ or devotees. Thus, after marriage, you can follow fasts and austerities comfortably.
(2) If you could not achieve the above arrangements, stop worrying about these violations now. Try to manage as much as possible. After marriage, follow sincerely.
That’s all you can do when I think all the practical aspects and all the possibilities for a girl. Lord will wait till your situation becomes suitable to follow regulations. Don’t worry. Don’t rush and make yourself tensed.
Decide according to your ground situation.
Hope this helps.