What is Ahimsa ?

What is ahimsa? Simply put, ahimsa is nonviolence. This could be thought of as not physically harming anyone, but ahmisa goes far beyond this.


"In the Sanskrit language, himsa means murder, or violence, and the particle a means no. Quoting from the Yogic texts, ahimsa is: the development of that virtue which will hinder one from harming – in any way – any being; and this is true both in act, speech or thought."

"The yogin deems that any being has as much right to live as himself. He thinks that he has been born to help the others, and looks with love upon all beings."

"En la lengua sánscrita, el himsä significa el 'asesinato', o la 'violencia', y la partícula a 'no'. Teniendo en cuenta lo señalado en los textos Yogicos, ahimsä es: el desarrollo de aquella virtud que impide a uno hacer daño – sea cual sea su forma – a cualquier ser; tanto mediante la acción, la palabra o el pensamiento."

"El yogin considera que cualquier ser tiene tanto a derecho a vivir como él. Piensa que ha nacido ayudar a otros, y observa con amor a todos los seres."
Agama Yoga

what is ahimsa - what is ahimsa - what is ahimsa ? nonviolence

"Ahimsa, or 'Dynamic Compassion' is a principle of non-harming and non-violence. Human behaviour that violates this ethical principle is seen, not only as morally wrong, but also as its original perspective as negative karma that reverts back onto the person responsible for the harm or violence done. "

"Ahimsa says that we have no right to inflict suffering and death onto another living creature and, that if harmlessness were the keynote of our lives, then this would do more to produce harmonious conditions than any other discipline. "

"The ultimate goal is to make the principle of Ahimsa permeate the whole of our society. This involves not only following a healthy vegetarian diet but also treating all beings with empathy and kindness in recognition of the fact that their sentience in the final analysis is no different to our own."

"Our lack of understanding and the pain we directly or indirectly cause animals reflects a deep spiritual disorder in the collective psyche of our species."

"Early peoples recognized the individual specialness of animals. They transformed our lives with their kinship, antics and even their sense of humour. These humans were at peace with the animals and spoke their language. Animals formed their totems, became their familiars and their teachers. It is that lost instinctive tie to the rhythms and patters of nature that Ahimsa exhorts us to regain."
What is Ahimsa ?
New Vegetarian and Natural Health, Summer 1998/9
What is Ahimsa?

what is ahimsa - what is ahimsa - what is ahimsa ? nonviolence

At Leo Shangrila Rancho in Mexico, i aspired to perfect ahimsa. Yogic texts state that the perfection of any of the Yamas or Niyamas leads to enlightenment, or unity. Achieving perfection in ahimsa can be harder than you might imagine though.

vegetarian dog food
vegetarian-dog-foodFor instance: When i was there we had three dogs (pictured left & below), two of which were still puppies. They were sometimes being fed with meat which i do not like, as i believe this is breaking ahimsa by causing the death of another animal to feed the dogs. i therefore decided to research what food dogs need to be healthy.

"Ahimsa training requires that we confront our indifference and lack of moral courage and acknowledge that animals have a silent dignity all of their own that we have violated. " purifymind.com/AhimsaAnimal

what is ahimsa ?
what-is-ahimsaWhilst i found many places on the internet which say dogs do need to eat meat, i have also found many which say dogs thrive on a vegetarian or even vegan diet. As this page is attempting to answer What is Ahimsa?, i choose to share below the nonviolent examples, whilst not dismissing the others.

vegan pet food
vegan-pet-foodi will continue to research until i am satisfied that the dogs are eating the best food whilst causing the least harm to other beings.

When i was feeding the dogs i predominantly gave them chaya (mayan spinach), wheat sprouts and oats (all raw) mixed with a little agnihotra ash.

ahimsa food
ahimsa-foodSometimes instead of the oats i fed them beans and/or rice. I intend to soak / sprout these in the future & to explore other options, like sprouted lentils and mung beans which are very high in protein, to give them the best nutrition possible.

Q: "Does my dog need to eat meat?"

A: "Since dogs are descended from omnivores, they are not strict meat eaters. They are remarkably adaptable to a wide range of ingredients, texture, and form in terms of what they will eat. Though many dogs may prefer animal-based protein, they can thrive on a vegetarian diet. Regardless of whether the protein comes from plant or animal sources, normal adult dogs should get about 10 percent of their total calories from protein. Older dogs appear to require somewhat more protein to maintain their protein reserves, perhaps as much as 50 percent more."

"it is an established fact that dogs can and do thrive on vegetarian diets"

Source: Committee on Animal Nutrition (CAN)

Vegetarian Cats and Dogs

If you have been feeding your companion animals commercial pet foods, you may be jeopardizing their health. Supermarket pet foods are often composed of ground-up parts of animals deemed by U.S. Department of Agriculture inspectors unfit for human consumption. The flesh of animals who fall into one of the categories of the four D's—dead, dying, diseased, or disabled—is what often goes into pet food. Many of these animals have died of infections and other diseases.

In all but a few states it is legal to remove unusable parts from chickens and sell them to pet food manufacturers. Most pet foods contain the same hormones, pesticides, and antibiotics that are found in commercial meat products for humans. If you are concerned about your companion animals' health and about the cruelty of the meat industry, now is the time to stop buying meat-based commercial pet food.

Many vegetarians and vegans feed healthful, meatless diets to their companion animals. One remarkable example is that of Bramble, a 27-year-old border collie whose vegan diet of rice, lentils, and organic vegetables earned her consideration by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world's oldest living dog in 2002.

Studies have shown that the ailments associated with meat consumption in humans, such as allergies, cancer, and kidney, heart, and bone problems, also affect many nonhumans. Pet food has also been recalled during mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), scares because of the risk that contaminated meat was processed into the food. One deputy commissioner states that cats especially "are susceptible to BSE."

"Some people wonder if it's "unnatural" to omit meat from the diet of a dog or cat. Animals in the wild commonly eat quite a lot of plant matter. Besides, to feed them the meat that they would naturally eat, you would have to serve them whole mice or birds or allow them to hunt for themselves, an option that is unfair to native species of birds and other small animals, since companion cats and dogs have been removed from the food chain and have advantages that free-roaming animals lack. Vegetarian or vegan dogs and cats enjoy their food and good health, and a vegetarian diet for your companion animal is ethically consistent with animal rights philosophy."
"A vegetarian diet for dogs? But aren’t they carnivores?

Good news! Dogs by nature are omnivores, not carnivores. They can thrive on a diet without meat.

Plus the needs of our dogs can be much different than the wolves they descended from. They are less active, live in a less clean environment with less healthy food sources and they don’t fast as long between meals.

There are many good reasons to eliminate meat from your dog’s diet, including health, global, ethical and environmental concerns."

Peace and Love
pete, of the adams family.

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