One of the five principles of living
or "Jain dharma
", a religion heavily influenced by Buddhism
that stresses the preservation of all forms of life and shuns materialism
The term has been translated to mean "non-violence in all parts of a person--mental, verbal, and physical."
This non-violence is expected toward not only fellow human beings and animals, but vegetables as well. Strict Jains will only consume products of the preceeding that do not threaten or cause the death of an organism. Therefore, a Jain could consume fruits, milk, and nuts, while meat and even onions, would be prohibited.
Violation of this principle is said to create bad karma and negatively affect an individual's next life.
The following are the other four principles of living within Jainism: