Actually, this post is about the incredulous responses that I have been getting from people when I tell them the details of our cleanse. Yes, people think its nuts.. or weird.. or psycho… or on the more positive spectrum – they think its cool – or impressed with the hard work and discipline. What I find MOST baffling is that people are amazed / taken aback / horrified (almost) at the thought of going Vegan for the purpose of doing the detox. (For those who might be a bit behind – click here to read about our Total Body Cleanse we are currently doing. A program entirely Organic and Vegan).
Thinking about it – yes, for someone who eats meat and chicken, fish and cheeses all week long – and more so on Shabbos- going completely vegan sounds extreme and difficult, but what amazes me is that these are people who do the same exact same thing once a year. It’s called PESACH. Every year on Pesach, the Jewish people “Detox.” We detox from bread and cookies and crackers and focus on Matzah. We learn that Matzah symbolizes humility while bread symbolizes “puffiness” which can be likened to arrogance. Each year for 8 days we detox our entire homes, kitchens and souls from the “chomatz” in our lives and we do it whole heartedly and never think twice.
Then why my friends, is it so difficult to wrap your heads around doing a PHYSICAL detox? Why is it so strange to think that I value my health, and the health of my husband – and therefore I want our bodies to be better and stronger? I found it amusing that being so “crazy” about Matzah crumbs and peeling every single vegetable is no big deal, but abstaining from eating animal proteins for a few weeks is just unfathomable.
The truth is that in Judaism – our health plays a key role. Without our physical bodies, we are literally unable to do ANY of our soul’s mission here on earth.
I know a guy….
I know a Rabbi in California, and he’s a very thin guy. His wife was telling me that he used to be extremely heavy. (She showed me pictures to prove it) He was ummm… BIG to put it mildly., As the Rabbi of a Shul, being active and eating healthy was never high on his priority list because he had “more important things to do…” One day he was walking to Shul – and he couldn’t go past the end of his block. He was panting, couldn’t catch his breath and needed to sit down. (If I remember correctly, I think he had to go home because they were scared it was more than just shortness of breath.) Long story short, this wasn’t something he could ignore any longer and made some drastic changes… and today the guy is a skinny pickle! (why that term is used I have no idea.. since when are pickles skinny?!) In any case, this Rabbi couldn’t walk to SHUL – his whole mission in life – to serve G-d and to take care of the Jewish families in his community he was physically unable to do because his body was not functioning the way it should.
This is the beauty of Judaism – it puts as great importance on our spiritual health as it does on our physical health. This is why when it comes to emergency life or death situations – we are allowed to transgress the Shabbos or Yom Tov. If we have good energy and vitality we are able to do our life’s mission with fervor, strength and passion as opposed to fatigue with our feet dragging behind us.
Of course it is easier said than done. Many people I know who are staunch health advocates usually had some sort of health scare, or ailment that gave them the ambition to lead fully healthy lives. However on the flip side, many of my young mom friends are taking control of their young children’s healthy habits from an early stage in life, so there won’t be “huffing and puffing” and extreme drastic changes needed later on.
And of course, it is my hope that I can inspire at least someone out there to help them realize that a healthy life means a more fulfilled life… and isn’t that ultimately what G-d wants?