In my research yesterday on the Yamas, I read a story about a snake. He lived in this one tree right outside of town and everyone in town was afraid to go by that tree because so many people had been bitten by the snake. One day, a guru decided to go talk with the snake and while talking the guru told the snake about kindness and how he should practice this and even gave the snake a mantra to help with his kindness practice. The snake began to practice this kindness and the towns people grew less afraid of the area and the children started to play area the tree again. The children being as courageous as they are began to throw stones at the snake, and he continued his practice until one day, he had become so beaten down by the stones, so weak that he cried out for the guru. The guru heard the cries of the snake and traveled to him. The guru saw the condition of the snake and grew very sad, he explained that will we should always practice kindness if given the chance but that does not mean that we should never hiss.
This is a very powerful story to me especially when I am in the midst of practicing ahimsa. The purpose is not to harm others or ourselves but the question has always been on my mind if we feel we are being mistreated do we protect ourselves? The answer seems to be yes. Allowing someone else to be harmful to us is not practicing ahimsa. It is allowing harm to happen. Notice the guru said to practice kindness if given the chance but that does not mean that we should never hiss.
May we all hiss with grace and kindness, a warrior with great virtue.
Much Love 💜 Much Life