Subsequent rest

Having eaten your food, you should take further rest. However, it is important that you don't sleep for at least three hours. You will be tempted to sleep, but try not to. If you do sleep you will pay the penalty. One practitioner, when he first did shankhaprakshalana was fast asleep within five minutes after taking food. Even though he was advised otherwise, he could not resist the overwhelming temptation to sleep. He did not sleep for a few hours, or even eight hours. He slept from about midday on the day of the practice, throughout the whole afternoon, the whole night, until noon the following day, and even when he woke up, it was because someone woke him. He felt very groggy and wanted to continue sleeping; even for the rest of the day, he wanted to do nothing but lie down and sleep. Of course, this is only one experience, there are many other different ones. We have known of some people who, contrary to advice, have gone to sleep too early, and who have felt grogginess and lethargy for the next few days. For some reason or another, premature sleep seems to lead to a long period of physical lethargy.

So don't sleep for at least three hours after taking food, if you don't want to be sluggish during the rest of the day and the following day. For three hours you should rest without doing any physical or mental work. After this time has elapsed, you may sleep if you wish. In this way you will avoid any side-effects.

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