Explaining the Idea of Ahimsa

564 WordsFeb 18, 20182 Pages
To explain how Gandhi applied the idea of ahimsa to modern times, I will first define ahimsa and then explore ahimsa in the Jain religion more extensively. I will then discuss how Gandhi practiced this concept in life. Ahimsa is a Sanskrit term equivalent to a- not or without hiṁsā- injury, which when translated means “the principle of non-injury to living beings”. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Ahimsa. The supreme principle in Jainism is non violence (ahimsa). It also plays an important role in Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Islam, and other religions, but Jainism is unique in this principle because it demonstrates it to all living beings. Jains believe that everything has the ability to suffer, even non-living things such as rocks, fire, and oil. Therefore ahimsa must include everything on earth. “This view of reality, called hylozoism (Greek: “matter-alive”) may be quite ancient” (Malloy 186). Karma is also an important concept in Jainism being closely connected to reincarnation, liberation (moksha), and ahimsa. “Reincarnation is sometimes called transmigration of the soul, believing that the soul experiences rebirths of different kinds of lives - human, animal or even supernatural - until it reaches its final destination.” http://www.world-religions-professor.com/reincarnation-karma.html. Karma is what determines the course of reincarnation. “The level of rebirth is determined automatically according to one’s state of karma at the time of death of the current

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