Ahimsa is a Sanskrit word for “non-violence”. The practice of non-violence is a call to keep your own actions and reactions clear from any sort of violence. It is an intention and a conscious decision not to harm others on physical or emotional levels.
If someone even unconsciously causes harm, it means that they simply do not take pauses between cognitive impulses and worldly actions. However, these thoughtless actions are often perceived by others as disrespectful, and a person might choose to cause emotional harm in revenge, whether privately or professionally.
Ahimsa is a filter for everything we do. If we choose Ahimsa, then we simply do not convert impulses to harm others or ourselves into actions.
First of all, simply take time between an impulse (emotion or thought) for action and the action itself. Before acting, check internally whether your action causes harm to yourself or others. If it causes harm, look for a non-violent option. There is always an intelligent, non-harmful way to behave.
At later stages, non-violence might be used to determine every single action you take, as well as streams of thoughts and emotions directed towards others, whether you know them personally or not.
Simply put, do not allow yourself to sink into an unclear cloud of emotions, experiencing endless irritation without any clear reason (or even with some seemingly clear reason) that results in an aggressive outcome.
Do not let yourself take actions without considering their possible outcome for others and yourself. We are talking here about physical as well as emotional pain. Pause and check before acting; use Ahimsa as a filter for actions and reactions. Your non-violence will be perceived as your grace and will always serve you well.
This modern view is given here as an invitation for your further reflection whether you have just started with mindfulness & yoga lessons for beginners, regularly attend mindfulness & yoga classes, a student at yoga teacher training or someone who looks for a chance to find some depth in everyday life.
Yoga is a pragmatic science where everything is tested and verified through direct experience.
Just as space isn’t defined by the objects that move through it, awareness isn’t defined or limited by the thoughts, emotions, perceptions, and so on that it apprehends. Awareness simply is.
Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.
Conscious human minds are more-or-less serial virtual machines (hint: Made of rules rather than wires) implemented – inefficiently on the parallel hardware that evolution has provided for us.
Let’s not forget the joy of doing something slow and difficult.
The ego could be defined simply in this way – a dysfunctional relationship with the present moment.
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