This month it’s all about the third Yama, which is Asteya: Non-Stealing. But first a look back at what we’ve already covered!
-The Yamas are 5 basic ethical principles to live by. Things we can do everyday to improve our happiness and the happiness of the people around us.
-The first principle, Ahimsa, is Non-Violence. It means more than just not being cruel to those around us. It means we should always be considerate of those around us and actually every little thing on this earth including ourselves!
-The second principle, Satya, is Truthfulness. Speak your truth with good intentions. Be honest with yourself about how you feel, you are allowed to feel however it is that you do. When we are first honest with ourselves it becomes easier to speak our truth to the world.
So what is Asteya : Non-Stealing?
Asteya seems simple right? Don’t break into someone’s home and steal his or her possessions. Done. Oh no, there’s more!
Asteya holds the belief that not listening to someone as they confide in you is theft; you are stealing their time.
Making someone run around after you is theft; you are stealing their energy.
Butting in when someone else receives praise for a job well done is theft; you are stealing their moment.
There are so many ways that we steal from each other everyday that I had personally never thought about before. The one that struck me in a particularly sensitive spot was stealing moments. I find that when others are complimented for something I can do just as well I become jealous. This happens often and honestly it makes me feel bad about myself. During my YYT I believe I discovered why this happens to me. It starts with me needing some sort of validation from others, that’s obvious. But why? Because I don’t give myself the validation that I needed. I have never once accomplished something and honestly told myself that I did a good job, or that I am proud of myself. I just move on and hope that maybe someone else will tell me that I am good enough. But this affirmation should be coming for me all along.
What I was doing all this time was actually stealing from myself! By just brushing things off and never appreciating myself and my hard work I stole my own ability to feel accomplished and proud. Since I’ve come to this realization I’ve been making a conscious effort to acknowledge my accomplishments on a daily basis, big and small!
Some ways to practice Asteya on a daily basis are just as I mentioned above. Tell yourself that you’ve done well, don’t wait for someone else to notice. Allow yourself to be proud! And when it comes to not stealing from others, think more about how you can give back, instead of how you can profit. Selflessness is key.
With much love,
Hi there! My name is Katelyn and I am one of the contributors to the wonderful LIA project blog.
I was born in Saskatoon, SK and was raised on a grain farm not far from the city. Growing up on the flatlands of Canada gave me this constant and overwhelming need to surround myself with everything natural so when I found Yoga after many years of ballet dancing it just made sense. To move my body with intention and be able to listen in on what my body was telling me was exactly what I needed to learn and what I try to convey to my students.
Nowadays I live in one of the most beautiful and nature-filled cities I have yet to discover, Zürich Switzerland. I try not to take any moment for granted because I know that it’s a damn blessing to live in such a lively yet organic city.
In my public and private yoga classes we move dynamically and with intention as I try to integrate Yoga’s basic principles into every class.
I’m honoured to share my writing with you all here and hope that it may help you better understand yoga, yourself and your neighbours.