From Encyclopedia of Buddhism
(Redirected from Ahiṃsā)
Jump to: navigation, search
Editor's note: This article needs attention. Need to include Theravada explanation Review-icon.png

Translations of
English non-violence,
refraining from harm
Pali avihiṃsā
Sanskrit ahimsa
Tibetan རྣམ་པར་མི་འཚེ་བ་།
(Wylie: rnam par mi ‘tshe ba;
THL: nampar mitsewa

Ahimsa (Sanskrit; Pali: avihiṃsā) is translated as "nonviolence", "non-harming", or "refraining from harm". It is defined as an attitude of loving kindness belonging to non-aggression.[1][2]

Within the Buddhist teachings, Ahimsa is identified as:





The Abhidharma-samuccaya states:

What is non-violence? It is an attitude of loving kindness belonging to non-hatred. Its function is not to be malicious.[1]

The Necklace of Clear Understanding states:

Non-violence is patient acceptance which expresses itself in the sentiment of how wonderful it would be if suffering sentient beings could be released from all their frustrations. Patient acceptance is an attitude not marred by the slightest idea of inflicting suffering.
This non-violence and the rejection of harming others is the central idea of the Buddha's teaching. [1]

The Khenjuk states:

Non-violence is a compassionate attitude belonging to non-aggression. Its function is to avoid causing harm to others.[2]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Guenther (1975), Kindle Locations 434-440.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Kunsang (2004), p. 25.


  • Bhikkhu Bodhi (2003), A Comprehensive Manual of Abhidhamma, Pariyatti Publishing
  • Guenther, Herbert V. & Leslie S. Kawamura (1975), Mind in Buddhist Psychology: A Translation of Ye-shes rgyal-mtshan's "The Necklace of Clear Understanding" Dharma Publishing. Kindle Edition.
  • Kunsang, Erik Pema (translator) (2004). Gateway to Knowledge, Vol. 1. North Atlantic Books.
  • Abhidhamma Vipassana icon.png Cetasikas by Nina van Gorkom

External links

This article is developed by our editors. Our team icon 75px.png