03 Apr Yama: Ahimsa (अहिंसा)
By Lucia Yess
Ahmisa is the first Yama in Patañjali’s Yoga Sutras. Ahimsa is non-violence. As a living being we are apart of a union with other living things. So the thought with this yama is that when you harm another you are hurting yourself.
This Karma, of harming another, will eventually play apart in your life so it encourages us to unite and not harm another energy. We can harm oneself and others with actions, words, and thoughts. Often times we are the most violent and harsh on oneself.
Have you been critical or harmful to yourself? How did it feel? Take time to think how you have been hurtful to yourself. Does anyone deserve to be treated that way? No way! We canbe so mean to oneself which then becomes really easy to do the same to others. How can you change those thoughts, ideas, actions, or words?
Some of the most powerful ways are through mindfulness, meditation, and movement. When we slow down and focus on our breathing and our life we often times we start to have more compassion to our world. We start to bring gratitude to our lives. We begin to feel contentment instead of fear, regret or shame.
It is so important to start with you. Non-violence towards yourself is where it has to begin. Then it will transcend to all living beings.