The practice of non-violence is usually understood as doing no harm physically. But from a spiritual perspective, non-violence includes refraining from both physical and energetic harm. In Buddhism and Hinduism, the practice is called ahimsa, which Mahatma Gandhi defined as non-violence in thought, word, and deed.
Most spiritual beings are conscious about their actions, focusing on being a peaceful presence in the world. Many are careful not to gossip or slander, and speak and write with positivity and compassion, knowing that words have power. But in the privacy of our own minds, terrible violence can thunder through our thoughts. Thoughts have form and force, and they can harm or heal, tear down or build up, bring darkness or light.
On the advanced path, awareness expands quickly and personal energy becomes much stronger. The more spiritual energy we have, the more responsibility we have to use that energy wisely, benignly, and for the greater good of all beings. This includes controlling where and how the mind is directed, refraining from psychic manipulation or pressure, and having good etiquette with personal energy. A single negative thought held by someone with a lot of personal power has the same energetic impact as striking someone or worse. And a single positive thought held by the same person can bring positive transformation and healing.
The practice of ahimsa is not just about non-violence toward other beings. It includes refraining from violence against yourself. Let go of judgment. Release your inner critic. Be patient and loving with yourself. When you look in the mirror, reflect compassion instead of complaining about what you see.
Be a benevolent being in this world, inside and out.
© 2016 Mu. Mu is the author of two books about the direct path of awakening. Walking the Advanced Path, a clear guide for how to navigate the pathway to enlightenment with responsibility, awareness, and grace, is available at Amazon.com and Amazon UK, CA, FR and DE. Advanced Path is a collection of lyrical verses about the journey to liberation, available at Amazon.com, and Amazon CA, UK, FR and DE.