ahimsa, (Sanskrit: “noninjury”)
“Ahimsa, rightly understood, is the ultimate weapon; it turns one’s enemy into a friend, thereby banishing the possibility of further conflict. In the practice of yoga, it is important to understand that the same life flows in the veins of all creatures.” – Swami Kriyananda.
“Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.” - Mark Twain
There is the potential that we might mistakenly consider Ahimsa in the abstract, or possibly in a “doesn’t apply to me” perspective. If we do no harm, are we living in peace? If we think no harm, are we free from anger’s acid? Choosing reverence for all living beings is a radical sometimes very difficult process. Far from staying neutral, far from hypocritical non-attachment, intending and then choosing peace, compassion, thoughtfulness and respect requires diligence, first in thoughts and then in actions. Developing a cache of relaxation tools, quality rest, stress reducers, humor enhancers, spiritual connections and community supports our efforts in Ahimsa to manage daily challenges. As we slow down, listen, stay open to others perspectives, we can find peace and as we each become peaceful, so our world heals.
It’s not a surprise anymore when I get “caught by a train;” not the Metra that takes 2 minutes, but those freighters just moseying by. There was a time when I would throw up my arms with frustration. Now, I just say "thanks for the break". A chance to unplug. Why not? If you get "caught," take a break and a minute to enjoy the art.
Most Thursdays I have a date with the lake – the big, beautiful, ever fascinating lake. The lake so big I can’t see across it. Nothing. I walk or sit. I gaze and clear. Sometimes I pray.
"By coming into a space of deep listening and receptivity and then focusing our intention on sending ... blessing to the waters of this planet. This may be to bring healing to the waters themselves, but like this practice of using the water as a carrier for healing individuals, a large enough and focused enough collective may be able to bring about healing or re-alignment in not just the water but all those who come into contact with it – and there is nothing this planet needs more than that." Jonathan Davis