Asteya is a Sanskrit word for Achaurya meaning "avoidance of stealing" or "non-stealing". "Steya" and "chury" means "to steal". "A" stands for "Anti".

In Jainism, it is one of the five vows that all sravakas and shravikas as well as sadhus and sadhvis must take.

The concept of "Asteya" is also a principal part of Hinduism, forming one of the 10 core principles that Hindus should try to abide by. The concept is frequently confused as being an equivalent of the Western commandment "Thou shall not steal" although in principle it means more than that. Asteya refers to not stealing, not coveting, nor hoarding, as well as not obstructing other people's desires in life. Swami Jyotirmanda of Miami's Yoga Ashram frequently states that "all the wealth of the world will be drawn to one who has mastered the practice and discipline of Asteya." This is analogous to the Christian (Biblical) saying, "The meek shall inherit the world."

Rational meaning[edit | edit source]

Uphold the virtue of non stealing, neither thieving, coveting nor failing to repay debt. Control your desires and live within your means. Do not use borrowed resources for unintended purposes or keep them past due. Do not gamble or defraud others. Do not renege on promises. Do not use others' names, words, resources, or rights without permission and acknowledgment.

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