Breatharianism is derived from the ancient craziness of starving yourself as some kind of spiritual discipline. Practitioners of various esoteric practices such as some forms of yoga would engage in a protracted period of fasting to demonstrate their purity and resolve of their mind over their body.
Whilst the body can survive for long periods without food (it is often said that a healthy adult go live for up to six weeks without food) only a few days without water would prove fatal.
Breatharians believe that a person can give up food and water altogether and live purely off prana (spiritual energy), which they also call "living on light" or "living on air."
Breatharianism was started by an Australian woman who completely failed at going without food and water when she was independently assessed. She has claimed that her nutrients came from fresh air and light, but during the test, her health became so bad, the test was aborted.
Three followers of Breatharianism died whilst attempting a Breatharian diet, but Jasmuheen (born: Ellen Grave) claimed that these deaths were psycho-spiritual deaths rather than being due to anything physical like dehydration. Jasmuheen claims that their beliefs are based on the writings from St. Germain.
We can only wonder what kind of person would literally starve themselves to death and not notice that they were getting seriously ill in the process.
Jasmuheen was awarded the Bent Spoon Award by Australian Skeptics in 2000 ("presented to the perpetrator of the most preposterous piece of paranormal or pseudoscientific piffle").
She also won the 2000 Ig Nobel Prize for Literature for Living on Light. She stated that her DNA has expanded from 2 to 12 strands, to "absorb more hydrogen". When offered $30,000 to prove her claim with a blood test, she refused.
Wiley Brooks, founder of The Breatharian Institute of America claims to have been a Breatharian for 30 years.
He also claims to have been the following in his past lives: "ADAM, ZEUS, ENOCH, JESHUA (JESUS THE CHRIST), JOSHUA, ELIJAH, JOHN THE BAPTIST, ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI, KUTHUMI, BALTHAZAR (KING OF SYRIA), MUGHAL EMPEROR SHAH JAHAN (Builder of the TaJ Mahal in Agra, India), JOSEPH SMITH AND WILLIAM MULHOLLAND." (sic)
He also writes: "A Breatharian is a person who can, under the proper conditions, live with or without eating physical food… When in a non-polluted environment (air or electro) he sleeps 1 to 7 hours a week. Althought Wiley is now 74 years old (young) he teaches only Empowered Ascension to a very few pre-qualified applicants. (sic)