Rishabha to Mahavira ware 24 Tirthankaras, who
were omniscient world Teachers. Lords Vimala, Ananta and Dharma flourished after a long long period since the advent of Rishabha, the first
Tirthankara. They were the 13th ,14thTirthankaras being perfect omniscient Teachers. They preached the selfsame
Truth according to the need of their times. Herein we give the principles of their teachings.
(1)This universe is eternal, with out beginning and end.
Explanation: - It is nothing but the sum-total of substances which have been existing
always and will go on existing for ever. No substance is created and no
substance is destroyed. Only there are modifications of substances. These
modifications take birth and cease to be. An old one dies; and a new one
is born. e.g., a human soul loses his boyhood, and acquires youth or old
age. When old age is born, boyhood dies. Or a gold bangle is broken to be made into a ring.
All the substances of this universe are primarily Living (Jivas) and non-living (Ajivas).
Explanation :- Broadly, life is that which has consciousness. All else is life-less, unconscious, non-living, non-soul.
Non-living substances are of five kinds. They are – (1) Matter in
forms of atoms and molecules – Pudgala (2) Space – Akash,
(3) Time – Kala, (4) Medium of motion – Dharmastikaya (5) Medium of rest – Adharmastikaya.
- Thus, in all, there are six kinds of substances of which this universe is composed.
The conscious immaterial sub-stance is soul. There are infinite souls.
(2) Matter is material, possessed of touch, taste, smell
and colour. Its
molecules are numerable, innumerable, and infinite in number.
Space is one grand infinite immaterial substance. It gives space to all other five substance.
Time is an immaterial substance which is an auxiliary cause in
and in all
or instants or time-atoms
innumerable. Each Time-atom
occupies one point of
space, thus the space of universe, which
points, is covered entirely by time-atoms.
(5) The medium of motion is
one immaterial substance. It is co-extensive with
the universe and
is an auxiliary cause for the motion of soul & matter.
The medium of rest is one immaterial substance. It is co-extensive
with the universe and is an auxiliary cause for the rest of souls and matter.
two substance soul and matter are the chief actors and perform mainly four
actions, i. e, they occupy space change and are at motion or at rest.
Every action must have two causes one principal, primary or root-cause,
and the other the auxiliary cause. The primary and essential cause of a
gold ring, is the gold of which
it it made; but the auxiliary or secondary causes are several e. g. fire,
the goldsmith’s tools etc., etc. So the primary causes of these above 4
actions of soul & matter themselves, but the auxiliary causes are the
above said four immaterial substance. Thus this universe is composed of six
real, uncreated substance (Dravyas), and all the manifestations of this universe are due
to modifications of soul and matter with the help of the other four substances.
Jain philosophy deals with seven principles Tattvas.
They are :- (i) Soul (Jiva),
(ii) non-soul (Ajiva); of this ordinary matter is an obvious example and
Karmic matter, the finest form of fine, invisible matter, is of
the utmost significance in life, (iii) inflow of Karmic matter into
soul – (Asrava),
(iv) Bondage of soul by Karmic matter, or rather union with and
assimilation of the new inflowing Karmic matter by the old Karmic matter
with which the embodied soul is already in combination – (Bandha),
(v) checking of inflow, (Samvara),
(vi) shedding off of karmic matter already bound with the soul – (Nirjara)
(vii) Liberation, final and complete separation of all kinds of matter from the soul – (Moksha)
two categories, soul and non-soul, include all the six substances (Dravyas).
The embodied souls are in combination with matter. They are impure and
transmigrating in many different mundane existences eternity. They have
got a fine Karmic body – a body of meritorious and de-meritorious Karmic
matter; in which every moment new Karmic molecules inflow and the old ones
are cast off. Thus though these molecules inhere in the soul only for a
limited time, yet they always keep the soul in an impure condition, until
it gets to tally rid of that fine body by its practice of self-realization
- Coming in of Karmic molecules by activity of mind, body, and speech.
Activity of a good kind attracts meritorious, while activity of a bad kind
attracts de-meritorious Karmic matter.
Bondage: - The union of Karmic matter with soul. It lasts for a limited time
according to the intensity of passions, presents at the time of inflow.
During this time of union, the Karmic matter produces good or bad effects
and having born its proper fruit falls off gradually; just as food and
medicine once taken in, produces effect for some time, till their full
matter has gone out of the body gradually.
- It is to prevent inflow of Karmic matter by control of mind, body and
speech. Checking of wrong activity will not bring Karmic matter which
would have come through that wrong activity. Desires of sense pleasures and
passions of anger, pride, deceit and greed produce the evil results of
injury (Hinsa); lie (Asatya), theft ( Steya), unchastity ( Abrahmacharya),
and attachment (Parigrah); which which bring de- meritorious Karmic
matter. Control of all these will check such matter from inflowing into
Shedding off: - Getting rid of the Karmic matter which is bound to the soul, before
its maturing and falling off after fruition. This shedding is a kind of
artificial and pre-mature fruition of Karma. It is achieved by means of
desirelessness and penances producing Pure Self-realisation and concentration.
Total freedom of all Karmic matter. Thus the soul reaching a pure and
blissful state of Grand Soul for ever remain pure and absorbed in its own
true and perfect nature of
all-knowledge, all-perception, infinite power, and infite bliss etc.
Way to liberation is threefold path of right belif (Samyak- darshana),
right Knowledge (Samyak- jnana), right conduct ( Samyak- charitra).
Explaination: These three are called three jewals (traya – ratna) of janism.
These are two ways of looking at things; one real
and the other practical. The latter is an auxiliary cause for the real.
They are called Nischaya and Vyavahara
nyyas or point of view. From the practical point of view, right
belief of the above seven principles is practical right belief. From real
point of view, right belief of one’s own soul’s true and real pure
nature is real right belief. Knowledge of the above seven principles is
practical right knowledge. Knowledge of the true, real
of one’s own soul is real right knowledge. Due to observation of five
vows of non-injury (Ahims), truthfulness (Satya), non-theft (Achourya),
chastity (Brahmcharya) and non-attachment (Aprigrah) is practical right
conduct. Realisation and concentration of one’s own true, real and pure
nature of soul by itself i.e. Self – absorption is real right conduct.
When perfect real, conduct with perfect knowledge
and perfect pure belif accrues, the soul is liberated and the called
Parmatma, God, Isvara, and Siddha.
Saints follow in full
the above said five vows of non injury etc. They therefore give up all
their possessions, become simple like little children without cloths, eat
once a day by going to the house of a pious-layman and pass their time in
self-meditation in lonely places, reading pure scared books and preaching
to the world the doctrines of the Jinas, the conquerors of Karmimic
effects. They have control over their desire and passions.
Practical right conduct is of two kinds; one for laymen and other for
saints. The latter is the
direct cause of liberation.
follow the above said five vows partially only. They gradually improve their
pursuit of vows, till they become saints. An ordinary layman of the
lowest degree should follow the five vows in the following manner:
He should not uselessly injure any living beings. Unless injury is due
to wrong belief, as to animal sacrifice, flesh eating, hunting, cruel
sports, fashion in leather, fur, plumage skins, bones, etc., etc.
As means of livelihood, he can peruse the profession of a soldier,
bankers, agriculture, trader, merchant, servant. Although he can avoid
some injury (Himsa) incidental to the above occupations, yet he should be
most careful to avoid it as much as possible in these, as also in cooking,
walking, speaking, respiration and other essential acts of human life as
an individual and as a member of society. He should not eat meat, honey or such thing as involve
destruction of animal life, nor should not drink intoxicating liquors.
He should speak truth, and
not cheat others by false speech and action.
He should not take what is not given. Only common things such as water etc. may take freely.
He should be contented with is his own wife.
He should put a limit to
his property. He may have a desire of lacs, but it should be limited to
some extent. Limitless ambition is greed. Gambling is also prohibited to a
layman. He should drink pure water free from all taint of animal life and
try to confine taking food between sunrise and sunset. There are elven
stages for a layman to rise in their performance of these five vows. After
passing them, the laymen become a saint.
qualities.The Idols of Arhats represents the feature of self-
contemplation thus impressing on the worshiper’s mind the pure nature of the self.
Real right conduct i,e.,
self-realization is required by saints and laymen by following their respective six.
Explanation:- The six essential daily duties for the saints are:
Equanimity i.e. the condition of mind free from worldly love and hatred
Penitence for past faults
Intention not to commit faults in future
Praising the holy persons
Bowing to the Holy Ones, and
(vi)Renunciation of bodily attachment.
The six essential duties of the laymen are:
(i) Worships of the Holy Ones- the conquerors of
Karmas by their names and representations and by presents and by praising
(ii)Services to the Preceptors and listening to their preaching.
(iii) Reading Holy Books.
Some minor vows for control of mind and senses such as – Today I shall
refrain from going to theatre; I shall have only two meal during the day;
shall not take sweet; shall not use scents, etc., etc. These are small
self denial to strengthen self-control and to speed one on to the realization of self-absorption.
Contemplation I.e. twice a day, morning and evening or only once,
sitting in a lonely place and meditating upon the nature of Holy Ones, or
one’s own soul, thereby acquiring equanimity by renouncing attachment
and hatered of worldly things for the time devoted to contemplation.
Charity- Practice charity of food, medicine, knowledge and fearlessness.
These six daily duties induce pure thought in saints
and laymen and enable them to reach Self-absorption - a state where real
right belief, right knowledge and right conduct are present in one
interfused condition. It is the path of shedding off much karmic dirt and
making the soul pure and free.
Jainas recite the following incantation mantra in
all their religious duties. It consists of 35 letters in Prakrit; its
occult significance also is great if it is understood perfectly intelligently.
Namo Arhantanm – I salute the Worshipful, the conquerors of
4 soul-destructive karmas, viz, knowledge obscuring, conation obsxring,
deluding and obstructive karmas and possessors of infinite knowledge, infinite
conation, infinite bliss and infinite power, having a pure body
and discoursing to the public the tenets and glory of true religion and eternal truth.
Namo Siddanam – I
salute the perfect pure souls free from the body and all karmic dirt, enjoying true natural bliss and knowledge
Namo Ayiriyanam –
I salute the saints who are the leaders of the group of saints, following the three jewels path of Liberation.
Namo Uvajjhayanam – I salute the saints who are the teachers
of scriptures to others for acquiring the path of the three jewels.
Namo Loye Savva Sahunam – I salute all the saints wherever
found in the universe on the path of salvation.
This mantra is helpful in acquiring Pure thought activity.