Remembering MLK Jr.
In the Yoga Sutra, Patanjali outlines the essential teachings of yoga. In his second chapter, he presents 5 specific ethical precepts, the first, and perhaps most important, of which is ahimsa (non-violence). Practicing ahimsa – doing no harm physically or with words - is essential to the practice of yoga. Ahimsa was most notably brought into the political sphere by Gandhi, who led the Indian nationalists in a peaceful revolution to independence against Great Britain. Gandhi’s espousal of non-violence inspired ahimsa-based revolutions around the world including Martin Luther King’s civil rights movement in the United States.
On October 14, 1964, King received the Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolence. Today, Jan 21, 2013, marks the 30th year that the United States has recognized MLK Jr Day, making today an opportunity to reflect on how we can choose to create change in our own lives with ahimsa-based principles.