What is Ahimsa (non-violence) ?

Discussion in 'Religion & Culture' started by blank_quest, Sep 23, 2012.

  1. blank_quest

    blank_quest Senior Member Senior Member

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    Hello friends,
    I want to ask one simple question! In the country of Gandhi , what do we understand by the concept of non-violence?

    1.What is non-violence ( Ahimsa )?
    2.Does this concept means being non-violent in extreme conditions also?
    3.If so, How will you react to any threat to your life and still follow non-violence?

    Provide your views friends, later I will provide a very nice logic behind it...:cool2::thumb:
     
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  3. parijataka

    parijataka Senior Member Senior Member

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    Since we are talking about Gandhi ji and his concepts, I'd like to say some of his ideas were stupid to say the least in the advice he gave. To the Jews who were being killed in the millions he advised that they should stay in their own countries and die. I think he was influenced by the Christian conecpt of turning the other cheek to a person who slaps on one cheek. Whereas in Hinduism we have the Bhagwad Gita that says sometimes violence is unavoidable.
     
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  4. blank_quest

    blank_quest Senior Member Senior Member

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    First of all ,please define, what is violence? our mindset in India has been very unthinking of its kind! we don't generally think and start to follow and imitate very quickly whatever is glamorized.
     
  5. parijataka

    parijataka Senior Member Senior Member

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    ^^^
    Causing hurt to other living beings.
     
  6. blank_quest

    blank_quest Senior Member Senior Member

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    but we hurt the plants we eat daily, isn't it? so are we violent?
     
  7. parijataka

    parijataka Senior Member Senior Member

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    Plants are `jad` while animals and human beings are `chetan` as per Indian thinking AFAIK.
     
  8. prahladh

    prahladh Respected Member

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    Assertiveness
     
  9. blank_quest

    blank_quest Senior Member Senior Member

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    does it means plants have no soul just because they are 'jad' (immovable)?
     
  10. chase

    chase Tihar Jail Banned

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    Gandhi's maniacal non-violence

    Hindus should not harbour anger in their hearts against Muslims even if the latter wanted to destroy them. Even if the Muslims want to kill us all we should face death bravely. If they established their rule after killing Hindus we would be ushering in a new world by sacrificing our lives. None should fear death. Birth and death are inevitable for every human being. Why should we then rejoice or grieve? If we die with a smile we shall enter into a new life, we shall be ushering in a new India.

    Collected Works/Volume 94/Speech At Prayer Meeting (6th April 1947) - Gwiki
     
  11. blank_quest

    blank_quest Senior Member Senior Member

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    First of all , what I think is

    IN the WESTERN(W) CONCEPT

    EATING(W) = EATER(W) +EATEN(W)
    So,
    EATING(W) =

    EATER(W) ( when eaters are Humans =>with a conscious state) +
    EATEN(W) (when animals/vegetables => with NO consciousness)

    ( as in WESTERN sense ,no concept of consciousness on vegetables/animal is imposed may be because they dont think that vegetable/animals have conscioussnes or soul in philosophical sense ),

    IN SANATAN DHARMA(S.D)
    The concept of EATING is deeper. (or perhaps thats what I see or think)

    EATING(S.D) = EATER(S.D) + EATEN(S.D) + *Non-Violence* ,
    So,
    EATING(S.D)=

    EATER(S.D) ( when eaters are Humans =>with a conscious state) +
    EATEN(S.D) (when animals/vegetables => with a consciousness)
    +
    *Non-Violence*,

    so all in all it has an extra layer of codition of non-violence to be with for Eating.

    So even having said that, when we impose the concept of EATING (S.D) on western EATING(W)

    Result(Test passed) for EATING(S.D) = EATER(W)( Humans with consciousness.) +EATEN(W)(animals/plants with NO coscioussness even when alive)+ *Non-Violence*
    here as in western concept animal/plants don't have any consciousness, their is no violence done by the EATER on EATEN. hence test passed,

    Whereas when concept of EATING (S.D) is applied on S.D itself,

    Result(Test failed) for EATING(S.D) = EATER(S.D)( Humans with consciousness.) +EATEN(S.D)(animals/plants with a coscioussness even when alive)+ *Non-Violence*
    here as in S.D concept animal/plants have consciousness, their is a violence done by the EATER on EATEN. hence test failed,


    The flaw is in defining the concept of *Non-Violence*.
     
  12. parijataka

    parijataka Senior Member Senior Member

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    No idea... :D. Now you explain instead of grilling!

    Ok, going through your logic ... :)
     
  13. Phenom

    Phenom Regular Member

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    We need to understand that Ahimsa as a philosophy has been there in India long before Gandhi. We also need to start differentiating the Ahimsa of ancient India and the Ahimsa followed by Gandhi.

    The ancient idea of Ahimsa is about a being compassionate and caring, not just to other people but to other living beings and to nature. IMO the original concept of Ahimsa did not talk about 'turning the other cheek' philosophy that Gandhi followed. If anything ancient Hindu scriptures contradict that, Gita says suffering injustice silently is as wretched as committing it, so a person is required to fight against injustice.

    Gandhi's principle of 'shaming the adversary' into submission is unrealistic and it mostly worked because the Brits were a lot more principled than some of their fellow Europeans.
     
  14. chase

    chase Tihar Jail Banned

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  15. panduranghari

    panduranghari Senior Member Senior Member

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    23-7-1923 Talks with Sri Aurobindo

    Disciple: I had a long discussion with X on vegetarian and non-vegetarian diet. His argument was that those who take non-vegetarian diet are people devoid of pity. Life is sacred and no one, who has not realized the Spirit in all forms of life, has the right to take meat.
    My reply was: Many Madans and Christians who take non-vegetarian diet are not devoid of pity. Christ himself was not a vegetarian; – diet has little to do with pity or cruelty. Secondly, the Jains who are proverbially vegetarians are not less cruel. Your argument that vegetables being lower forms of life can be eaten but animals being higher forms should not be eaten is based upon an arbitrary assumption about the higher and the lower forms of life. It is a creation of human mind. All life is life.

    Disciple: X would have taken fish if it had been a vegetable.
    Sri Aurobindo: It is absurd to make food such an important thing in the spiritual life. It is a secondary matter whether one takes vegetarian or non-vegetarian diet, so far as the spiritual life is concerned. The real thing is equality or Samata. If that is there then it is immaterial whether one takes fish or vegetarian diet. Philosophically, it is meaningless to say this has more life and that has less.

    Disciple: But the animals have more evolved life than the trees.
    Sri Aurobindo: Not life but mind. Life is more manifest in the plant, in some respects, than even in man. Only, the mind is not evolved.

    Disciple: The question is of vital repulsion. One can say he feels repulsion in killing an animal or he feels the animal nearer to him. But that would not prove that the plant when killed suffers less. It is only because man is not able to see the suffering of the plant that he feels the repulsion less, perhaps. All these things are due to Samskaras – previous, impressions. The plain fact is that one cannot live unless he takes some kind of life. All these arguments are only intellect trying to justify old Samskaras.

    Disciple: You spoke of equality, Samata. Why should one establish equality in the Prana, the vital, before one does it in the mind?
    Sri Aurobindo: Why should he not, if he can? It is not that one has to wait and establish equality on all planes at once, at a time.

    Disciple: Is it necessary to wait till the yoga is perfect in order to take fish?
    Sri Aurobindo: I do not understand why one should. Very few people realise the true meaning of Samata, equality. By Samata, equality, is meant a certain attitude of the whole being towards the world and its happenings. This world is full of so many things which are horrible and terrible. Samata means that one should be able to look at them from a certain poise without being perplexed or moved. It does not mean that one will go on killing others indiscriminately or out of a personal motive. That would be untruth. But it means that one must be able to look at things without being moved. What X calls "pity" is something quite different from "compassion" and both are different from Samata – equality. Samata is an attitude of the whole being. Pity and sentimentalism are results of nervous repulsion, some movement in the vital being. I myself, when I was young, could not read anything related to cruelty without feeling that repulsion and a feeling of hatred for those who practised it. I could not kill an insect, say, a bug or a mosquito. This was not because I believed in Ahimsa but because I had nervous repulsion. Later, even when I had no mental objection, I could not harm anything because the body rejected the act. When I was in jail I was subjected to all sorts of mental tortures for the first fifteen days. I had to look upon scenes of all kinds of suffering and then the nervous repulsion passed away.

    Compassion is something different. It comes from Above. It is a state of sympathy for the suffering of man and the suffering that is on earth and there is an idea of helping it as far as one can, whenever one can in his own way. It is not like pity. It is like the Gods who look upon human suffering from above, unmoved. That compassion can also destroy and it destroys with compassion, – Daya, – as Durga does the Rakshasas, the hostile beings. There can be no pity there. Many times the Rakshasa may come and ask you to save him, he may even ask you to transform him – as some beings asked the Mother in her vision – by your spiritual power. If you try that, all the power goes to the Rakshasa and you may become powerless. When these vital beings incarnate in men then the compassion would not prevent you from killing them.

    That the vegetable kingdom has got life is not something new to know and it is not necessary to acquire Samata to take fish. I used to take it when I was a child and when I had no Samata. What is required is: one should have no repulsion. As a matter of fact, I cannot take fish nowadays, but that means nothing. I give it to the cats all right.

    When there is Samata then there comes Samarasatva – equal enjoyment – from everything – one gets the rasa, essential delight, from every kind of food. Even the food that we call badly cooked has a rasa of its own. But one can agree to a little bit of diplomacy. It is no use casting fish in the face of a Jain or forcing Smoke in the face of an orthodox Tamil Brahmin.
     
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  16. Dovah

    Dovah Untermensch Senior Member

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    Re: Gandhi's maniacal non-violence

    :shocked: :shocked:
     
  17. A chauhan

    A chauhan "अहिंसा परमो धर्मः धर्म हिंसा तथैव च: l" Senior Member

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    From the PoV of Law if you want to understand what Ahimsa (Non-violence) means today, then read section 96 to section 106 of Indian Penal Code, if you practise those rights mentioned in those sections then you are doing Ahimsa (even if you kill someone under certain circumstances mentioned there), but if you exceed them then you are committing punishable Violence !! :tsk:

    Indian Penal Code (IPC)
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2012
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  18. blank_quest

    blank_quest Senior Member Senior Member

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    So, if non-violence means absolute non-violence then we all are violent . We kill bacteria, our immune system is killing cells etc. so we need to understand what does non-violence actually means for us. If we survive by eating plants then we should say that to minimize violence we should take only that much from nature which is suitable for our survival.

    so, for me non-violence should mean that: Take only as much as required for survival, if you take more than what is needed for survival then that is violence. By this logic even death while self protection for our survival is justified.....( Think logically , am not justifying death )

    :confused: was Gandhi wrong then?
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2012
  19. blank_quest

    blank_quest Senior Member Senior Member

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    yaa , am also thinking that: Taking as much as required from nature , not more then that! but am applying logic to it. there should be a rationale for every concept propounded !
     
  20. ashdoc

    ashdoc Senior Member Senior Member

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    ahimsa has been the bane of this country for over a thousand years .

    when prithviraj chauhan is said to have spared the life of muhammad ghauri after defeating him it was some kind of ahimsa . and look at where it got us !!!

    ghauri invaded india again and didnt show us the same kind of ahimsa---he killed prithviraj and lakhs of other hindus along with destroying many temples raping women and coverting lakhs to slavery .
     
  21. blank_quest

    blank_quest Senior Member Senior Member

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    India has always been fooled by bloated self pride by others, It always doomed us.
     
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