The Asha values are an expression of the value of individual and community transformation, along with social justice
These also form the core of human values, and reflect the contemporary notions of human rights, civil society, and governance. Through a practical expression of these values, Asha aims to provide access to holistic community-based healthcare, education, environmental improvements and financial services to some of the world’s poorest communities. Beyond the improvements to circumstances that come about through their application, these values bind us together – they define our identity and that of our communities.
Dignity consists not in possessing honors, but in the consciousness that we deserve them. Dignity is an essential part of every human being and it can never be separated from other essential aspects of the human person. It comes not from control, but from understanding who you are and taking your rightful place in the world.
Empowerment is enhancing the capacity of individuals or groups to make choices and to transform those choices into desired actions and outcomes. Empowerment enables the true potential of every individual to be unleashed for the benefit of communities and our world.
Justice means challenging oppressive social structures and responding to injustice through non-violence and active peacemaking. Social justice also requires equal distribution of the opportunities and benefits of development. It insists on the rights of all people to reach their individual potential.
Non-violence essentially means abstention from all forms of violence. This includes not just physical violence, but also verbal violence and violence of thought. There is a complete rejection of aggression and confrontation, of thought, of words and of actions. It is based on the conviction that forgiveness can change even an enemy into a friend.
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Compassion means ‘to suffer with’. It is a deep concern for the needs of others. It is a recognition of and identification with the suffering of others. Compassion helps one to look past racial and cultural differences, and see people as one. It is a fundamental path of human love and a cornerstone of greater social interaction.
Gratitude is not just a feeling of thankfulness in response to a gift or a kind gesture. Gratitude is a way of life. It is a conscious choice to focus on life’s blessings rather than on its shortcomings. It magnifies goodness and therefore blocks toxic emotions such as envy, resentment or depression that destroy one’s optimal well being.
Generosity is the act of giving freely because of the desire to, and not because of expectation of something in return. Generosity is motivated by love and always intends to enhance the well-being of others. It enriches life, and makes one feel content with one’s share in life. Generosity allows one to partake of a bigger consciousness that admits prosperity, abundance, and wealth to all.
Optimism changes the boundaries of one’s heart and mind, and the outlook on one’s environment. It helps a person to see more possibilities. This openness of hearts and minds obey the warmth of positivity. It changes one’s ability to see the common humanity with others.
Joy is a settled state of contentment, confidence and hope. It does not indicate a temporary feeling of pleasure or happiness, but rather a constant state of well being, a continuous journey of flourishing. Its high energy clears one’s thinking, disperses worry and other negative emotions making the person more creative, more trusting and more trusted.
Simplicity gives one a singleness of purpose, and sincerity and honesty within. It allows a person to remove exterior clutter, irrelevant to the chief purpose of our lives. It means ordering and guiding of energy and desires, a restraint in some directions in order to secure greater abundance of life in other directions. It involves deliberate organisation of one’s lives for a purpose.
Affirmation means ‘to state or assert positively, to maintain as true’. It also stands for giving a person a heightened sense of value through the experience of something emotionally or spiritually uplifting. Words of encouragement and affirmation lead to courage, and a sense of security. This brings about a vibrant expression of latent potential within us, and causes us to flourish in all the dimensions of our lives.
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Touch conveys a whole range of emotions. It spreads goodwill, and is highly contagious. It helps us feel free to express ourselves, to share our struggles and to communicate feelings of gratitude, warmth and love.