Ahimsa Is Great Virtue


Lesson of the Day

From The Master Course by Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami

November 18, 2007
Lesson 221

What Is the Great Virtue Called Ahimsa?

Ahimsa, or noninjury, is the first and foremost ethical principle of every Hindu. It is gentleness and nonviolence, whether physical, mental or emotional. It is abstaining from causing hurt or harm to all beings. Aum.

Bhashya
To the Hindu the ground is sacred. The rivers are sacred. The sky is sacred. The sun is sacred. His wife is a Goddess. Her husband is a God. Their children are devas. Their home is a shrine. Life is a pilgrimage to liberation from rebirth, and no violence can be carried to the higher reaches of that ascent. While nonviolence speaks only to the most extreme forms of wrongdoing, ahimsa, which includes not killing, goes much deeper to prohibit the subtle abuse and the simple hurt. Rishi Patanjali described ahimsa as the great vow and foremost spiritual discipline which Truth-seekers must follow strictly and without fail. This extends to harm of all kinds caused by one’s thoughts, words and deeds–including injury to the natural environment. Even the intent to injure, even violence committed in a dream, is a violation of ahimsa. Vedic rishis who revealed dharma proclaimed ahimsa as the way to achieve harmony with our environment, peace between peoples and compassion within ourselves. The Vedic edict is: “Ahimsa is not causing pain to any living being at any time through the actions of one’s mind, speech or body.” Aum Namah Sivaya.

Lesson 221 from Living with Siva
The Abyss of Pornography

Live and learn, live and learn. We learn something every day, and it is not always what we want to learn. Sometimes it is good for us to know, and other times not so good. It is difficult for us to speak of certain subjects. They are too sensitive, taboo, delicate and private, and so we avoid them. But it is necessary to understand and cope with these matters; and if father and grandmother are not speaking about them, then others must. Pornography is one. Not that it is bad in the sinful sense. Hinduism is too tolerant of sexuality to make such pronouncements. We can say it is neither good nor bad, but we can also say it does place big obstacles in relationships, including unexplainable misunderstandings leading to arguments. And it certainly can and does interfere with serious spiritual effort and progress. Those on the path of sadhana are admonished not to indulge in graphic, explicit sexual imagery, and if they are involved already, to give it up, just give it up. The porno path is a downhill path to be avoided. It is ever enticing but never fulfilling. I recently was told that pornography is addictive. I always understood that alcohol, tobacco and certain drugs are addictive, but to find out that pornography is addictive, that was something new for me. …Please click here to read more