（Contributed by Reuben)
The Big Osōji…for the Body
Cleaning out a specific space is commonly practiced all the time. We clean out our houses, our cars, even our wardrobes. Even our computers collect dust over time, which can cause overheating and permanent damage if not addressed. The body is no exception. Over the years, your body collects toxins in the body which certain organs help to filter, but it’s not a 100% guarantee that they will expel these. There are many methods of releasing these toxins from the body; one of which is by massage. By applying pressure to the body, the toxins can actually be freed from the nooks and crannies of wherever they’re hiding.
Another method is fasting (断食in Japanese). When done properly, fasting is an amazing method of cleaning out your body’s systems; from the circulatory system, as well as the large and small intestines which can—over the years—contain undigested particles of food. By withholding food from your body and only drinking water, you’re flushing out your body’s systems. It’s also a great way to lose weight if you are like me: someone who is experiencing a weight problem.
There’s also a spiritual aspect to this, since this practice does put mental strain on the mind. People in the past have done things that have been deemed as horrific, in order to preserve their own life and avoid starvation. However, studies have shown that these people have experienced only a few days of starvation, when the human body can easily stay alive for a week with no permanent damage without food. It’s the fear of starvation that compels them to act.
When you voluntarily starve your body, you’re actually training your body and mind not to fear such a thing; at least for seven days. Past the seven-day mark is the danger point. That’s when your body will usually run out of body fat to feed on, and begin feeding on its internal organs. Under safe conditions and an ample supply of water—as well as plenty of rest, one could easily go a week without food without any bodily harm.
However, most cannot accomplish this, since your body—as well as your subconscious—will compel you to eat. Thoughts of food will fill your head and haunt your every waking moment. This is when it becomes a test of wills. Which is stronger? Your conscience mind or your body?