All life in this world has a Divine origin and the same beginning. This means that by harming someone, we harm ourselves and our karma. Therefore, we should always keep in mind that all living beings have a soul and can feel pain. An immortal soul is incarnated on Earth from one being to another in order to complete a long path of spiritual evolution. But it is only in human form that it finds the opportunity to find out the Divine truth. This is the basis of the Ahimsa principle that I want to discuss in this article.
What Is Ahimsa?
Ahimsa is a principle of nonviolence which applies to all living beings. This principle is inspired by the premise that all living beings have the spark of the divine spiritual energy and therefore, to hurt another being is to hurt oneself.
Ahimsa means the absence of the qualities that accompany the manifestation of evil in all possible forms — in thought, speech, and actions.
However, it would be a mistake to understand Ahimsa as the need to remain passive in any situation. In fact, we need to understand that passive non-resistance to evil can lead to harmful consequences. You should not allow others to destroy you by reacting to the wave of evil directed at you. However, you should know how to resist any energy attacks from others.
To do this, you should learn to defend yourself without showing negative emotions and aggressive responses. It is necessary to train yourself to maintain a state of balance and calmness impassively and unshakably.
Only then any “attacks” will not be able to hit you energetically, and you will not react with negative responses, and the wave of evil directed at you will be neutralized without causing harm, colliding with a wall of counteracting energies of calm and fortitude. It is necessary to defend yourself without allowing evil in the heart.
Ahimsa And Violence
Now let’s take a closer look at different expressions of violence and how Ahimsa can help us overcome this negativity.
1. Anger, hatred, aggression and all the resulting consequences (quarrels, swearing, violence, murder, physical harm, etc.).
Any external manifestations of anger, hatred and other negative emotions have a hidden internal source, which is the rejection of oneself.
In no case should Ahimsa be understood as containing the anger that has arisen, which will entail undesirable consequences in one form or another. It is important not to allow it to occur at all.
The energy of anger is destructive. All our actions will sooner or later respond to us in the same way, and the destructive energy that you “bestowed” on the world around you will inevitably return to you. This is the law of karma.
However, it is always very difficult to not allow anger to control you. Therefore, if you still get angry sometimes, it is essential to learn how to control this feeling. If you feel that anger is coming, try to distance yourself from the situation and think about whether the reason for the anger is so significant. Taking time to think about it will give you an opportunity to calm down, analyze everything and make a reasonable judgment.
Any manifestation of aggression and hatred is a reflection of our subconscious attitude to ourselves. Until we learn to accept ourselves as we really are, we will not like anything in the outside world that doesn’t match our expectations. If you love yourself, you love God in yourself. This sincere love leads to acceptance of everything that exists in this world. The desire to criticize, be offended, or be angry disappears as soon as we learn what true self-love is.
2. Participation in animal killing
Veganism is one of the main ethical aspects of Ahimsa. Fortunately, nowadays there are more and more people started to realize this simple thing: when we eat meat, we support violence (even if we did not participate in the killing of the animal).
There is also an opinion that the cells of a killed animal “remember” its fear, aggression, despair, which it experienced before death. And along with the meat, a person swallows these negative emotions, which then begin to “germinate” in him.
I often hear from people that they can’t stop eating meat or give up on dairy or seafood. And then they try to “make a deal” with their karma: “I won’t eat meat, but I will replace it with fish or shrimp”. I’m not sure what kind of logic they follow in this kind of choice but for God, there is no difference between a pig’s life and a shrimp’s life, or between a human baby’s life and a chick. Therefore, it is pointless to try to negotiate this deal with your karma. Each life has to be valued equally!
It goes without saying that we are not able to control every step we take so as not to step on some bug. Unfortunately, it is impossible to prevent such “accidents”. Since no choice was made, your responsibility for such acts is less. However, if you were given a choice, then, following the principle of Ahimsa, you can always get around the insect on your way. In this case, you are not causing harm. Don’t forget that we are creating our own future every second, every minute. Therefore it is so important to always stay mindful!
3. The use of other living beings
In our modern society, for some reason, it has become the norm to use others for selfish purposes, without thinking about what they may feel.
People go to circuses, take children to zoos, without thinking about the fact it’s not a natural environment for the animals and they may suffer there. Animal exploitation in circuses and zoos creates very bad karma for everyone who participates in it (including the ones who pay for watching it).
You see, every time we pay for something, we sponsor it. Think about what you invest your money in the most. Does it make our planet a better place or cause more suffering in the world? This is the question that needs to be asked before every purchase you make!
Animals suffer from loneliness and lack of attention in the cages of their prisons – zoos. They develop an abnormal, stereotypical behavior called zoochosis. A survey of zoos around the world has shown that this phenomenon is widespread.
Zoos often sell or kill animals that no longer attract visitors. Others are sold for meat or given to research laboratories.
Circuses are in fact a prime example of animal cruelty. All circus tricks are unnatural for wild animals, so they will never do them themselves, of their own free will. And the process of training includes cruel bullying to “make” them perform and do tricks.
Do you think animals enjoy this? They came to this world to live! To live in freedom, and not in a gloomy cage of a prison-zoo, and not to please thousands of curious eyes looking at the circus arena, in order to have some fun.
4. Environmental pollution (household waste, chemical emissions, non-recyclable garbage).
The consumer lifestyle is ruthlessly destroying the ecosystem of our planet. The problem of ecology is particularly acute in recent years. Human influence on nature leads to the impossibility of its self-healing.
The ecological crisis is caused by the manifestation of human selfishness. Mountains of garbage that man has littered the planet, deforestation, pollution of the hydrosphere with oil products and heavy metals, the removal of huge masses of minerals from the earth’s bowels, the depletion of the world’s oceans, the toxification of the earth with pesticides, herbicides and nitrates, the destruction of thousands of species of plants and animals, and the pollution of the atmosphere with harmful substances are all the actions that cause bad karma.
Ahimsa Of Thoughts
Ahimsa also means not causing harm with our thoughts. The evil that is done in thoughts is not obvious. It has a hidden form. However, the damage that a single negative thought can do to someone can be truly enormous, because it is not limited in its action. Therefore, its occurrence will necessarily lead to a certain consequence, favorable or not — it depends on the nature of the thought. It may seem that the results of our thoughts are invisible. However, the energy of thought is the root of all phenomena.
Have you heard the saying: “If you want to change the world, start with yourself”? And this saying can be applied to Ahimsa.
You see, we also build our inner world in our thoughts. Therefore it is essential not to allow their adverse manifestations. Remember that the thought that is born in you, first of all, poisons you, attracting the corresponding vibrations in the surrounding space. Self-poisoning occurs with your own evil thoughts! Do not create this poisonous energy in yourself and do not allow others to “infect” you with negative emotions.
When we judge and criticize other people, we resent their nature, thus showing our rejection of the divine plan. It is better not to judge at all. When I deal with negative people, I like to remind myself that the best judge is karma. Karma will eventually take care of every act people do, whether it is good or bad. And it is not your job to analyze what people do wrong and criticize them.
It is important to understand that it is impossible to correct another person. We should always remember that everyone suffers from destructive passions and emotions, being in the captivity of their own illusions. Other people’s shortcomings are always in front of us, and we turn our back on our own. Let’s always look back at ourselves — this will make us more tolerant of other people’s vices.
How to practice Ahimsa?
Now let me share with you how you can start practicing ahimsa in your everyday life. Here are 4 ways to start with!
#1: Wish others well
This simple practice in a short time will teach you to treat people more warmly and impartially, which means that you yourself will become more loving and kind. Another variation is to practice a mental bow to everyone you meet.
#2: Don’t respond negatively to negativity
This is one of the main rules I accepted for myself long time ago.
If someone shows you a negative attitude, the first automatic reaction is to express negativity back. As a result, we only multiply it. Moreover, in such a battle we waste so much energy that can be used for something more important! Instead of talking back with negativity, stop right there and ask yourself the questions: “Is this my emotion or am I just reflected it? Do I really need it now? Is it really necessary to respond?”.
If you stop yourself from unnecessary verbal battles, you will not only save your energy from waste but will also help another person not to attract more negativity.
#3: Take care of your body
Yes, Ahimsa is also an act of nonviolence towards ourselves. Your body should be always treated with the love and respect that the Spirit that lives in it deserves.
When we eat too much or poison ourselves with toxic products, our bodies are forced to spend all their resources on digesting and removing all these toxins. When we don’t take care of our own bodies we violate the Ahimsa principle. Eating light, healthy food, exercising, meditating – are also ways to practice Ahimsa.
#4: Take care of your mind
Similarly, you should take care of your mind. To do this, learn to always pay attention to what information you consume. The flow of negative news that leads to a state of despondency, movies with violent scenes that cause a sense of fear — all this “clogs” the mind and shifts the focus towards the negative.
To practice, Ahimsa means to minimize the information noise that provokes negative emotions. The less negative emotions you have, the more peaceful you become. And if you are peaceful and calm, you won’t be able to cause suffering for other beings.
The Bottom Line
Our planet, as well as all living beings, has its own aura. The Earth’s aura consists of the auras of all the creatures that live on it. Thus, all of us together create the main tone of the aura of our planet. We all need to realize what a great responsibility we have. It depends on each of us what kind of energy the Earth radiates into outer space — malevolent or benevolent. As soon as we fully realize that our existence should not be accompanied by the satisfaction of egoistic needs, the principle of Ahimsa becomes a natural way of life.