Self-starvation by fasting is known as Santhara and is supposed to help shed karma according to Jain religion. The ritual can be carried out to voluntary death. Supporters of the practice believe that santhara cannot be considered suicide, but rather something one does with full knowledge and intent, while suicide is viewed as emotional and hasty. Due to the prolonged nature of Santhara, the individual is given ample time to reflect on his or her life. The vow of Santhara is taken when one feels that one's life has served its purpose. The goal of Santhara is to purify the body and, with this, the individual strives to abandon desire.