Feb 20, 2004
For millennia, people have tried to reach a spiritual promised land by fasting. Jesus did it. The Buddha did it. Monks and saints and new age gurus have done it. And now, on the radio, This American Life contributor David Rakoff tries it. He does a 20-day fast, to find out if it brings him any form of enlightenment.
Also, contributor Starlee Kine tells a story about getting as close to one promised land as you possibly can, without actually going in.
- Fans of movie musicals might know about something called the "I Wish" number. In many movies and Broadway shows, it's the main character's first song, in which they express the hope that will set the story in motion. Host Ira Glass explains it, and plays a few examples. (7 minutes)