Today In Fact, 18 September

Inedia or breatharianism is an extreme form of ascetism in which practitioners claim to live without food.

This idea is most commonly promoted in eastern mystical traditions but today in 1962, a Bavarian Catholic, Therese Neumann died after reputedly having lived for four decades without taking any food except the host at Mass.

Known throughout her life as a mystic and suffering the stigmata, Therese seems to have managed to elevate what many would regard as an extreme form of anorexia into a spiritual exercise.

In a completely unconnected event, eight years later on this day, Jimi Hendrix died in his own vomit in a London flat from a drug overdose. The master of rock guitar was arguably the greatest instrumentalist in the history of rock-n-roll but we do know that he did eat a tuna fish sandwich before he died so we can surmise that Hendrix was not a particularly staunch devotee of breatharianism.

– Posted by Douglas Racionzer (

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