GUIDE TO FASTING
The Moose Hide Campaign is a call to action to all men and boys in Canada to stand shoulder to shoulder; to show ourselves, each other, and all Canadians that violence is no longer tolerated in our communities and society. Each February we ask men to fast and all people to gather with us to stand up against violence towards women and children. Should you choose to respond to this call to action, we have put together a simple guide to explain the significance of fasting for the Moose Hide Campaign, and to offer some guidance in setting your intention as well as ensuring your safety.
Fasting has always been an important ceremonial practice for traditional cultures throughout the world. Many cultures practice fasting ceremonies when:
- Conducting important work
- Addressing significant challenges and important transitions
- Seeking guidance and direction
- Deepening personal and collective intentions and commitments.
Fasting is a means of testing, practicing and deepening our personal commitment to our values and intentions. It calls upon us to make a small sacrifice of food and water and challenges us to move from intentions to action, from beliefs to experience.
Fasting is key practice within the Moose Hide Campaign movement to demonstrate a personal commitment to honoring and protecting the woman and children in our lives. It is also a way to support each other in our collective responsibility as men to ensure all women and children are free from violence in our homes, communities and our nations.
For the Moose Hide Campaign, the practice of fasting is also a hunger strike. We go on this “hunger strike” as a public nonviolent protest against the societal norms that have allowed injustice for Indigenous women and children and a call to action for all men to end all forms of violence within our society. While this fast is proposed for men, we encourage women to join in this challenge by bearing witness and supporting in whatever way they feel called.
Making this simple sacrifice is a way to show yourself and your relations that you take this commitment seriously.
Fasting can be a transformative experience, and for us this ceremony is rooted in a personal sense of commitment, action and purpose to honor and protect the women and children in your lives.
Beyond these broad notions, it is not our intention to define what fasting should or shouldn’t be, how it should be done or why. Rather we hope to outline our reasons and approach to fasting within the Moose Hide Campaign for those who may find it beneficial. We hope is serves that purpose, and we hope you will join us!