Last night I was helping watch three children while the fourth children was transported to and from his Homecoming dance. As everyone was restless, it seemed like a good time to talk about one of the fundamental Yamas (also called restraints - or rules) of yoga philosophy - Non-Violence.
The Non-Violence restraint is the idea of causing no harm to others or ourselves. Another way to define this is:
What a great example of kindness.
Then we discussed how to be kind to people or animals. One way to be kind is to give treats to dogs like me. This is one of my favorite expressions of kindness.
Then we discussed what you can do when you feel the urge to hurt someone because we are frustrated, tired, bored or angry. A great way to avoid being unkind is to take a personal time out.
Close your eyes and take 5 long inhales and exhales. If that is not enough, take 5 more long breaths. Try to notice your thoughts without reacting to them. I also highly recommend trying to take a nap. It can be hard to be our best selves when we are tired and cranky.
I hope this Yama discussion on Non-Violence has been helpful to you.
Over the next few months I will be sharing the Yamas and Niyamas from yoga philosophy with the children in my life. Next up - Truthfulness.
Yogi Bear is the friendly and wise mascot of Mini Change Yoga.