At long last: Ahimsa 3.0 for WP
August 31st, 2009 by ravi

Update: You can now download this version of the theme from the official WordPress site as well.

Download Ahimsa 3.0 for WordPress

Download Ahimsa 3.0 for WordPress

With apologies for all the delays, and for the incomplete features and issues that remain, I am releasing Version 3.0 of Ahimsa for WordPress.

There is a lot in this new release (hence the bump up to version 3, rather than the 2.3 that was initially planned). Here’s a summary:

First the fine print

This release includes cleanup of the stylesheet. If you have custom CSS changes or equivalent, please beware (also see my offer towards the end of this post). Your custom skins will need to be updated to the new styles. You can do that by checking the “Update Skins” checkbox in the Ahimsa Options page of the admin section of your blog, and then clicking on Save Changes. The AhrenCode supplied skins (Kind of Blue, A Grey Mood) are already updated to the new style, so this step is not required in their case. The corollary is that if you have made custom modifications to these themes, then please save them before you install this version. Finally, as of this release, there is not even a pretense of IE6 support. Sorry, its just too much work.

New Features and Fixes

  • Custom skin editing: if you created a skin in the past and were frustrated by the inability to edit it, this might be a bit of relief. You can now edit the skins you create (or have created) — the limit is that the skin has to be the current selected one. As the above fine print notes, the style sheets have now changed, so follow instructions above to first update any skins.
  • New Skin “Sarvodaya”: this update includes a new earth toned and simplistic skin called Sarvodaya. Give me your thoughts on it!
  • IE Rounded Corners: don’t get excited. This has turned out to be a horrible affair. After evaluating 10 or so JavaScript plugins and libraries, I settled on two that provide some support for rounded corners in Internet Explorer. A lot of disclaimers apply: no rounded corners for the titles, sidebar widgets, the action bubbles, etc; and an artifact: a small white section is displayed under the bottom bar of each post. If all of this is palatable to you, then visit the Ahimsa Options page and turn on IE rounded corners support. If you notice anything worse than the above, turn it off and let me know.
  • Custom modifications support: for your own CSS customisations, or JavaScript snippets and such that you may need to add to the footer, there are now two files that you can use: <code>custom.css</code> (for your style overrides) and <code>footer-custom.php</code> (for your footer snippets). The stylesheet <code>custom.css</code> is loaded last by the theme, so you can override any of the styles in this file. And since these files are external to the theme files, your modifications are safe from theme upgrades (watch out, however, that your theme update does not nuke your entire theme directory, killing your custom files!).
  • Proper Comment Reply Form AJAX behaviour: WP 2.7 introduced the feature of moving the reply box up immediately after a comment when you click to reply. That behaviour was broken in Ahimsa and has now been fixed.
  • Share your skins: this is not a change to Ahimsa itself, but if you have created a custom skin that you want to share you can now do so. See the instructions on the Ahimsa page.
  • W3C XTHML 1.0 Standard validation: many, many fixed to satisfy the W3C validator. One or three issues might persist but most are now gone. Check it out and let me know!
  • Multi-page suppport: Ahimsa did not include support for mutli-page posts. It now does.
  • Other fixes:
    • Fixed input fields in response form: The response form had ridiculously long input fields for Name, URL etc. That has now been fixed.
    • Increased line spacing: makes for easier reading for your audience.
    • New screenshot: the current one dates back to an Ahimsa 1.x release!
    • More information in the Options section
    • Fixed a bug where the date bubble in comments was getting chopped off on the right.
    • And a lot of other minor issues.

Many of you have waited patiently for this update and I hope this is worth the wait. As always, I greatly appreciate your feedback.

And if you have done customisations of the theme with which you need help, or if your skin does not update properly, etc, please do contact me and I will be glad to help.

67 Responses  
  • ravi writes:

    Hmm, I seem to have messed up the reply auto move fix :-(. I am investigating.

  • deambulando writes:

    nice work!

    But the captcha you have in you site is really anoying. That much spam do you have?

  • Korpil writes:

    Ahimsa 3.0 para WordPress traducido al ESPAÑOL, obténlo en:

    Already translated Ahima 3.0 for WP to Spanish. Get it at:

  • Caleb Adam Haye writes:

    Hi, great theme, thanks for sharing.

    However, there is a pretty blatant error in your comments-old.php file. Basically, the file doesn’t start with the requisite “<?php" block, so it biatches about an error on line 14. Obviously, it's really easy to fix though.

    Just FYI…

    Again, great work on the theme.

  • guido alexander waldenmeier writes:

    just love the colorfull design great stuff !

  • LS Web Designs Blog » Blog Archive » Ahimsa writes:

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  • shahrol writes:

    hi bro…i need to used this theme for my web ….. but can i put it the flashfader as per my current web theme that is pleaser help me anyone?

  • jack. writes:

    Love the theme, just upgraded to 3.0. How do I turn off the sidebar fade when viewing a page?


    • jack. writes:

      oh, and is there a way to turn off the actions/orange box altogether?

    • ravi writes:

      Jack, thank you for the comment. You can turn off the sidebar fade
      effect in the Dashboard -> Appearance -> Ahimsa Options page. Please
      contact me if you need further info.

      • jerry writes:

        Can you tell me how one disables the sidebar function? This is a nice feature but, my readers will have no idea what to do with it (older). I also had to shrink the width of the site with the custom.css below but, when I collapse the sidebar the entire site shrinks by that amount. If you could tell me how to prevent that I would keep the sidebar feature there.

        Also, how do I center the site on a page? I’ve tried a million combination’s with no luck.

        Thanks much.

        • ravi writes:

          Jerry, the simplest way to disable the sidebar (assuming you have set your Ahimsa Options to always display the sidebar for both the home/index page and single post/page) may be to hide it using CSS (which you can add, as you already know, to a file called custom.css in the Ahimsa theme directory).

          display: none !important;

          I just visited your site and there are some problems with it — the main content does not expand to occupy the entire width when the sidebar is collapsed. The reason may be the fixed width you added for #sidebar. Your CSS makes sense and the blame is mine for not providing better names. What you really need to set the width on is the container table cell for the sidebar, which is #tdsidebar.

  • Sharilyn writes:

    LOVE the theme. I’m toying around with it on (still haven’t launched it, so pay no attention to that hastily-imported content behind the curtain).

    I’m looking at options for advertising beyond Adsense, and would like to have an Amazon widget on the sidebar. I haven’t been able to figure out how to do it other than to place the script inside a text box — which I don’t like. It seems to take a while to load, and frankly it’s kinda fug. I’d rather it be on its own.

    Do I need to install some sort of plug-in to accomplish this, or can I just plunk the script into a particular spot, and voila it’ll be be there without a border around it?

    • Sharilyn writes:

      I had to play around with this more last night, and just gave up and removed the Amazon widget. So never mind.

    • ravi writes:

      Hello Sharilyn. Thank you for your kind words and apologies for the delayed response. First you need to choose where you want your Amazon widget to appear… you can continue to use the textbox widget in fact, so that your change doesn’t get nuked when you upgrade Ahimsa. You should still be able to style the widget the way you want, as long as you are willing to do the CSS. I can help! Let me know what exactly you are going for.

  • Robert Ford writes:

    Hi Ravi,

    I really like the template, and am experimenting with it for a Social Venture site that some friends are working on.

    Is their any way that I can easily switch off comments (including the ‘Comments closed’ that switching it off at the page level gives you) for ALL pages?

    Also, is there anyway to have more of a traditional drop-down navbar, rather than showing the pages in the sidebar?

    Thanks in advance,


    • ravi writes:

      Hello Robert,

      do you meant that you want to turn off comments for all pages but
      leave them open for posts? If so, I am not sure there is a way to do
      that in WordPress without a plug-in or changes within the theme code.
      If this is what you are shooting for, I can give you the code changes
      you need to add to the theme to make it happen. Let me know!

      Regarding a drop-down navbar, that is a lot of UI work to do, so its
      not trivial. I have been considering implementing this for a future
      release since I get this request a lot, but for now, if you want the
      navbar you will have to use a plug-in that provides that feature. I
      believe there are a few.

      I hope that helps!

  • Stu writes:

    This is nice, the sidebar fadein looks a little odd as you can see the background through it, I’d try somehow showing it all, but at 0% width, then slide the width in if possible to the full amount

    • ravi writes:

      Stu, I guess you are suggesting that I do a slide in rather than a fade in. I admit slide in makes more sense (especially given the position of the tab). I will think about it for a future release. Thank you for posting the suggestion.

  • Cait writes:

    I am having a terrible time getting my AdSense ads to work with this theme. Am I doing something wrong? I was using the Text/hTML widget in the sidebar but it shows up blank? Can anyone help?

  • Elaine writes:

    Hi Ravi,

    Ahimsa is a great template! I would love to have the post headings appear larger- for a title they are almost smaller than the text of the post and too easily overlooked. Can you tell me where the font-size property is located in the CSS?


    • ravi writes:

      Elaine, you can over-ride the settings by adding to the end of the stylesheet (or in a custom.css file) the following (setting font-size to the value you prefer):

      .post legend.title
      font-size: large;

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  • Ahimsa - Di?n ?àn writes:

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  • writes:

    Hi Ravi,
    Do you plan a French translation, or do you know someone who did it, or which is the way to translate your template?
    Thanks anyway for this nice colorful template that turns our visitors happy ;-)

    • ravi writes:

      Pascal, there isn’t a French translation that I know of. It isn’t quite easy yet to translate the theme, but the next version (coming real soon) will have full internationalisation support, at which time, translation can be done by creating a simple file which maps text strings from English to French. Please keep checking this blog or my Twitter feed for the release. At that time I can provide more info on how to create a translation file.

  • karangan1malaysia writes:

    hi,how i can make both side of sidebar?

    • ravi writes:

      There isn’t an easy way to do that yet, unfortunately. But two sidebars support is coming in the next release, so please stay tuned.

  • sarah writes:

    Hi, thanks for a great theme. I’m using this on several blogs that I have. I was wondering if you can let me know how to make the comments automatically show without having to click on the comments button. I would really appreciate if you can give me that info. Thanks! Sarah

    • ravi writes:

      Sarah, do you mean that you want comments to show up in the main/home page (when it is set to display latest posts)? If so, that’s not possible in Ahimsa, and it would look quite messy wouldn’t it?

      Once you click on a post, you can of course see all the comments against it at the end of the post.

      • Walter van Ruitenbeek writes:

        Hi Ravi, first thanks for your great design!

        Like Sarah I would like to have the possibility to see the comments in the main/home page. I do not agree with you that it would look messy. I think it will motivate more people to write a comment.

        Greetings Walter

        • ravi writes:

          Walter, by main do you really mean the page which lists the last N posts (where N = 10, by default, I think)? If you are really certain that you want comments to appear here, I can try to guide you on the changes you will need to make, but they are not trivial I am afraid.

          Thank you for your note, and I am sorry for the late response.

  • ronen writes:

    I am trying to config some of the parameters in this theme and would like to know if and when you will release a Fixed version to this great theme.

    • ravi writes:

      Ronen, can you elaborate? Are you having trouble configuring some parameters?

      • ronen writes:

        I have tried to configure some parameters inside the css , although it did work for me for a specific screen resolution, I really need a fixed version of this theme. the reason is coz I have adsense and I optimise it specifically to certain places on my post (such as parallel to the Video in my post), I don’t have good skills of html and maybe this can be solved somehow… but for the meantime this is mainly why I preffer the fixed templates

        • ravi writes:

          Ronen, ah, you want the content or the main section to have a fixed size? If so, you can add at the end of the stylesheet a line that says something like this:

          width: 700px !important;

          Let me know if that’s works for what you need. You can also contact me via chat on Google chat (“ahrencode”) so we can work on this together in real time.

  • Die unsichtbare Bibliothek » Blog Archive » Eine wenig runder – Ahimsa 3.0 für Wordpress writes:

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  • Mike writes:

    I’ve hunted through .css and php,

    But I can’t find where to change the default width of the Sidebar / Sidebar list. I want some RSS feeds and find the current width a bit small.

    Otherwise I really like this.

  • Mike writes:

    OK I figured just adding a width in the css would work to make sidepanel wider. It does.
    I can’t find where the default width was set though.

    I have it up on internet here

    Very happy with it, thanks.

    • ravi writes:

      Mike, there is no default width set. The theme is intended to resize itself with the browser by maximising the post section. Thank you for your note.

  • Gilbert Purtee writes:

    I enjoy this theme. Sweet!!! Simple and easy to use. Thanks!

  • Diana Stirling writes:

    Thank you so much for this beautiful theme! I am the librarian in my small town and I have been using this theme for our library site. I have a question about how to configure it, though. I have it set up so that the posts appear on the front page. The problem was that if a person subscribed to a post feed, clicking on the latest post led them to a page that actually didn’t have real content on it. I’ve deleted that page (!) and now clicking on the post link in a feed gets an error message. (If the person types in the site url manually, it takes them to the home page and the posts appear there as expected.) I know I’ve messed up here, but I’m not skilled enough to know how to fix my mistake. From experience, I know better than to go any further without expert help! So, please help.

    • ravi writes:

      Diana, I think I am going to need some clarification. When you say post feed, do you really mean post feed, i.e., the post comment feed? Or do you mean that someone subscribed to the blog feed gets an empty page if they click on the post link in the feed reader. Can you explain? Apologies for not responding earlier.

  • Sam writes:

    GREAT THEME & CODE!!! Is there a way to turn off or delete the “title” attribute of the navigation links in the sidebar list? Since the link already says what it is, I’d prefer for there to be no title tag that pops up and says the same thing. Thanks! :-)

    • ravi writes:

      Sam, thank you for the kind words. Which navigation links are you speaking of? The ones in the calendar widget? Something else? Please let me know.

  • Francois writes:

    Great scheme! Thank you!

  • ????? » ahimsa.3.0 writes:
  • Axman6 writes:

    Is there any chance you could add an option to make this theme fixed width? It shows up horribly on the iPhone, because it renders it far too wide, and it also makes it very hard to read my blog on my 23″ monitor. I love using this theme, but this is one thing I really need. (I may see if I can hack a fix for my blog, but having it supported officially, with preferences, would be fantastic. Especially if there was a choice of a few different sizes)

    Thanks for the great theme,

    — Axman6

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