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Ahimsa (Leave No Trace)

When is the last time you went on a hike (or stopped to smell the roses)?

If you're a regular nature-goer, you may be familiar with the aphorism "Leave No Trace". This adage reminds us to step lightly, clean up after ourselves, and be aware of how our actions will impact the living systems around us both in the present moment and in the future. Leave No Trace is asking us to take care of where we are.

Ahimsa, the first yogic virtue, also invites us to take care. Ahimsa is literally translated as "non-violence" or "non-harm". We know through personal experience the delights of acting with care. On a hike we place our feet where they won't get tripped up by tree roots. We slow down enough to appreciate the details of individual snowflakes or marvel at the clarity of water in a stream. And we occasionally are struck with the urge to stop in our tracks just to listen to the wind that streams over the surface of the planet connecting us all.

Ahimsa m…

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