Asteya – Non Stealing
Asteya in Sanskrit, or non stealing, is another Yama that appears to be easily achieved on the surface. Most people know that they shouldn’t go around stealing objects and possessions from others. But the true nature of Asteya requires us to look a little deeper.
Right now (and this should still stand in every day life too) everyone deserves to have their opinion and to have their right to be heard, whether this is to do with personal feelings, likes and dislikes or political opinions. Before arguing your point by telling someone they are wrong for what they believe, take a step back and think about whether you are stealing from them their right to choose. To formulate their own opinion. Anything we see or read only ever appears to be fact anyway, no one ever REALLY knows the whole truth of anything. Remembering to lead from a state of Ahimsa (non harming), kindness and compassion is what we need right now. Anyone can have their right to be heard too, but we can all be mindful of how this is put across.
Stealing time from people is also something that is never really thought about. Before calling someone and launching in with your needs, it may be worth asking whether now is a good time to talk (I am guilty as charged with this when I steam in with enthusiasm). You never know what people may have going on that could make it a difficult time for them. Coming back later could also give you more space to be heard if the time works for them too. The engagement then turns out as a great cooperation.
Equally, if not more importantly right now, is to not be stealing time or experience from yourself. Take the time to nurture yourself, take the opportunity to do something great if it presents itself. Don’t steal from yourself the things that feel good for your soul.
A good way to activate Asteya could be thinking about the opposite of non stealing – giving. What can you give to yourself and others that will feel good in the capacity that is available to you? Starting small is the best first step. A random act of kindness goes a long way.
I hope this post inspires you to give out some good energy in the name of Asteya.