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Non-Violence as a Spiritual Practice

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Wednesday, March 23 from 7 – 8:30 pm ET

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If you can’t attend this event live, all who register will receive a 48hr-active link to watch the recording. 

Non-Violence as a Spiritual Practice

What is ahimsa? It is often translated as nonviolence, but it actually encompasses far more than simply avoiding harming others. Ahimsa is nonviolence in thought, word, and action. But what is the significance of this disposition in spiritual life? Why have a variety of spiritual traditions promoted ahimsa as a central virtue? And why have some of these same traditions also been used as justifications for violence at various points in human history? This seminar will explore the concept of ahimsa from the perspectives of a variety of traditions, as well as the fraught question of the relationship between violence, nonviolence, and the world’s spiritual traditions.

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Jeffery D. Long is the Carl W. Zeigler Professor of Religion, Philosophy, and Asian Studies at Elizabethtown College, in Pennsylvania, where he has taught since receiving his doctoral degree from the University of Chicago Divinity School in the year 2000. He is the author of several books, including Hinduism in America: A Convergence of Worlds (2020) and Jainism: An Introduction (2009), the editor of Perspectives on Reincarnation: Hindu, Christian, and Scientific (2019) and the co-editor of Nonviolence in the World’s Religions: A Concise Introduction (2021) and Beacons of Dharma: Spiritual Exemplars for the Modern World (2019). Dr. Long also edits the series Explorations in Indic Traditions: Ethical, Philosophical, and Theological for Lexington Books. He has spoken on nonviolence at many prestigious venues, including three talks presented at the United Nations.