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Prahlad Jani- read about the Indian monk who survived without food and water for almost 75 years


Article by: Shalini Deb Roy, The North-Eastern Chronicle

Visual by: Raysham Powdel

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A monk usually denotes a person who decides to dedicate his life to serve all other living beings, or to be an ascetic who voluntarily chooses to leave mainstream society and live his or her life in prayer and contemplation. The concept is ancient and can be seen in many religions and in philosophy.

Monastic life plays an important role in many Christian churches, especially in the Catholic and Orthodox traditions as well as in other faiths such as Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism. A Hindu monk is called a sanyāsī, sādhu, or swāmi. A sādhu can typically be recognized by his ochre-colored clothing.

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Such renunciates are accorded high respect in Hindu society, because of their outward renunciation of selfishness and worldliness serves as an inspiration to householders who strive for mental renunciation.

Who is Prahlad Jani and how was he recognized by the public?

Prahlad Jani

One of the most prominent Indian monk is Prahlad Jani, who claimed to have lived without food or water for over 75 years. The mystic Yogi is also known as ‘Mataji’ or ‘Chunriwala Mataji’ and his tale of being blessed by a Goddess, (Amba) enabled him to survive without sustenance for decades, gained a mass following in different states of India.

Amazing and interesting facts about the Indian Yogi

Prahlad Jani was born in Charada village in Gujarat. According to him, he was born in 1929, he left his home at the age of seven and went to the jungle in search of spiritual experience.

He claimed to underwent a religious experience at age of 11 or 12 and became a follower of Amba, the Hindu Goddess. From that time he chose to wear a dress as a female devotee of Amba including a red sari like a garment, jewellery, and crimson flowers in his shoulder-length hair. He also wore bindi and sindoor as used by married Hindu women.

prahlad jani

It is for this reason, he was commonly known as ‘Mataji’. He believed that the goddess provides him liquid nourishment or water which drops down through a hole in his palate that allows him to survive without food or water. No doubt his life was a mysterious and a subject of wide discussion.

The various scientists, doctors and people remained surprised with his unique existence. Since 1970, he was living in a hermit in a cave in the rainforest near the temple of Ambaji in Gujarat. He used to wake up at 4 a.m every single day, also did spend most of his time in meditation.

The two observational tests were conducted on Indian Yogi Prahlad Jani, one in 2003 and another in 2010. In 2003 at Sterling Hospital in Ahmedabad, Dr. Sudhir and some physicians are said to observe Prahlad Jani for 10 days. He stayed in a sealed room. During the observation, doctors claimed that he did not pass stool or urine.

A hospital spokesperson told that he was physically normal, but amazing is that he had a hole in the palate which was an abnormal condition.

The Mystic Indian Yogi Prahlad Jani was further kept under observation in 2010 by Dr. Sudhir Shah and a team of more than 30 researchers from the Indian Defence Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences (DIPAS), as well as other organisations.

The surveillance was reportedly followed using CCTV cameras and personal observations.The team studied through clinical examinations, blood tests and scans.

According to the researchers, Prahlad Jani only came in the contact of fluid was during gargling and bathing. Throughout the 15 days of observation conducted in 2010, he did not eat food or drink and also did not go to the toilet. Also, the doctors told that all the tests of Prahlad Jani were normal and was in better health.

Moreover, The Discovery Channel in 2006 aired a documentary “The Boy with Divine Powers” featuring about 5-minute on Indian Yogi Prahlad Jani. The mystic Indian Yogi was further said to have been featured in an Austrian documentary “AM Anfang war das Licht” (English title, “In the Beginning, There was Light”).

The ascetic, who claimed to have lived without food or water for eight decades of his life, passed away due to illness on 2020 at his native village, Charada. He was given samadhi in his ashram at Gabbar Hill near Ambaji on 28 May 2020.

Thus, The Indian Yogi lived a mysterious life. As no one can live without food and water, but the life of Indian Yogi was a subject of wide discussion. He attained International fame as the person who survived without food or water for decades altogether even as a faction of scientific community doubted his claims. However, the findings of the investigations on him have been kept confidential and viewed with skepticism.

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