Last Updated: July 27, 2017

Definition - What does Breatharianism mean?

Breatharianism is the belief that survival without the consumption of food is possible and that prana alone can sustain one's life. Also called inedia, a Latin word which means "fasting," breatharianism is to live on sunlight, the source of prana, which is considered the life force by Hindu philosophy.

Yogapedia explains Breatharianism

To live solely on prana derived from the sun, breatharians replace their food with this life force. While food is processed to produce energy in the body, the body cells of breatharians absorb energy directly from the light, or life force.

In his Yoga Sutras, Sage Patanjali writes that performing samyama aids the yogi to be liberated from the need to consume food for survival. Samyama is the practice of integrating dharana, dhyana and samadhi, and is the supreme level of mind control.

The art of living off prana is also called Prana yoga. The practice involves deep breathing and sun gazing. Breatharianism, according to its followers, is not starving, but, rather, replacing food with a spiritual source to sustain life.

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