Ahimsa – Non-Violence

19 01 2012

Yoga is a journey in physical discipline. But, we don’t want to forget the philosophy that connects the mind and body, which follows us off the mat into our daily lives. The guidelines of yoga philosophy are meant for personal contemplation. It is not about right or wrong. It  is about seeing the truth in ourselves and noticing whether we are moving in the right direction, making the right choices. Yamas are the guidlines for interacting with the outer world. Niyamas are the practice of how we interact with ourselves internally.

One of the Yamas is Ahimsa, the practice of non-violence. We are to bring awareness to our actions, thoughts, and words and practice being patient, loving, understanding, and compassionate. These actions are meant to be expressed towards others, but also towards ourselves. Although, this does not mean we are to let others walk all over us. There is a time to say, “No”, to create boundaries to avoid stress, manipulation, or violence.

In my experience, women have a tendency not to support one another. Maybe we feel we are working in a “man’s world” and need to do what we can to succeed. Sometimes we may feel threatened by a promotion, a relationship, our looks, our age, or anything else we can think of to compare ourselves against. The sad side to this is, if we would support and lift each other we could accomplish and succeed more collectively than alone.

My friends are few, but they are friends that want the best for me, knowing I want the same for them. It is not a competition. We share our successes as well as our failures.

The internal chatter in my head is a constant battle for me, but I believe through my yoga practice I have progressed on this part of my journey. The negative talk, or Monkey Mind, is always there, but I pay attention to it more now and quickly replace it with a positive thought.  It is a journey.

Bullying seems to be a problem with young women. We experienced it in our family a few years ago and a friend of mine is experiencing it in her family as I blog. It is horrible. I don’t know the answer to the problem. The person bullying needs attention, as well as, the person being bullied.

Maybe, if we try to practice Ahimsa more in our daily lives, it will spread to all those crossing our paths. We are strong, intelligent, courageous, (I am sure I am leaving out something important. Help me out here and fill in any other positive adjective.) and totally awesome women (and men) that can accomplish anything we can imagine.

Have you experienced bullying? Do you battle with your Monkey Mind? How do you practice Ahimsa? Please share your thoughts….





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