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 Jainism compared with Buddhism

  Jainism  or  Jain Dharma (जैन धर्म) is an ancient religion of India that prescribes a path of non-violence (Ahimsa) towards all living beings. Jain philosophy is based upon eternal, universal truths. During the first and last two Aras, these truths lapse among humanity and then reappear through the teachings of enlightened humans, those who have reached moksha or total knowledge (Kevala Jnana), during the third and fourth Aras. Traditionally, in our universe and in our time, Lord Rushabha (ऋषभ) is regarded as the first to realize the truth. Lord Vardhamana (Mahavira) was the last Tirthankara to attain enlightenment (599-527 BC). He was preceded by 23 others, making a total of 24 Tirthankaras. A Jain is a follower of Jinas
  The goal of Jainism is to realize the soul's true nature. "Samyak darshan gyan charitrani moksha margah", meaning "true/right perception, knowledge and conduct" ( known as the triple gems of Jainism) provides the path for attaining liberation (moksha) from samsara (the universal cycle of birth and death).   

  Jain Tirthankara

  Jaina tradition identifies Bhagwan Rishabh (Adhinath) as the First Tirthankar. There are five basic ethical principles (vows) prescribed in Jainism as Non-violence (Ahimsa), Truth (Satya), Non- stealing (Asteya), Celibacy (Brahmacarya) and Non-possession (Aparigraha).
  According to Jain philosophy, there is no supreme divine creator, owner, preserver or destroyer. The universe is self-regulated and every soul has the potential to achieve divine consciousness (siddha) through its own efforts. Every living being has a soul. Every soul is the architect of its own life, here or hereafter. Every soul is born as a celestial, human, sub-human or hellish being according to its own karmas, When a soul is freed from karmas, it becomes free and attain divine 
consciousness. The goal of Jainism is liberation of the soul from the negative effects of unenlightened thoughts, speech and action.. Jains do not believe in an omnipotent supreme being, creator or manager (kartā), but rather in an eternal universe governed by natural laws.


  Buddhism is a religion preached by Goutama Buddha. He was a contemporary of Lord  Mahavira  who  was the  24th Thirthankara of the Jainas. Goutama Buddha belonged  to the Sakya  clan of warriors. The warrior class  of   Sakyas  claim their connection   with   the   families of   the great Ekshvaku dynasty.  Goutama Sakhya Muni   was   born   to a king by name Suddhodana whose capital was Kapilavastu. Goutama   Sakhya   Muni was born in  B.C. 623. At the time of his birth,  the  sooth- Sayers and astrologers predicted that he would renounce the world and becomes a great   religious   teacher. In   order to prevent such an event, his father arranged to bring up his son practically in seclusion from the general world so that no dark side of life can  appear before   him. He was married and a son was born to him.  Though his   father   had   arranged   to   keep   him   always in happy environment, Goutama Buddha   arranged   with   his   charioteer   to   take   him   out of the place along the thoroughfares of the City. There he met the real   life of the people. One day he  met an old man. At another time he met a corpse   carried   in a bier. He learnt   from  his  charioteer that old age, disease and death are the inevitable consequences  of   life. He learnt to his utter disappointment that his life as a happy youth  surrounded  by similar   youthful  and happy men and women must inevitably pass through the old age and end in death. He naturally thought about the vanishing youth. He began to contemplate on the  misery of life all around and he wanted to investigate why there should   be   misery   in the world and what was its true cause. was it not possible to avoid  this  dreadful  misery?  If  it was possible  to  avoid and extricate misery, what was the   proper   method for achieving this end? Thus he began to think  of  Dukha, Dukhotpati, Dukha Nirodaha and Dukha Niroda Margaha. While contemplating on these four important aspects of life - Buddha decided that  in  order  to achieve  his purpose he must renounce the world once for all. 
With this decision, one  night he instructed his charioteer to drive him beyond the palace and the City to  the  forest. There  he removed all his ornaments and the royal robes and gave them to his charioteer, who  was asked to return to the City.  Himself remaining  in  the forest as an ascetic, he went upon solving the  problem  of  misery which the world is so   full of. He tried the various methods of performing Thapas as practiced by the various groups of ascetics whom he met.  He was not satisfied with all methods. He did  not  relish the extreme practices. He chose for himself the middle path   avoiding   extremes   of   self  mortification. Accepting the moderate and sober  method   of   yogic  contemplation, he was able to see beyond the veil which hid the face of reality. While  sitting under a Bodhi tree, he secured the yogic enlightenment or wisdom.  He became the   Buddha - the  enlightened   one.  

 Gutama Siddhârtha
 Life:  BC. 563-483, BC.  463- 383  (Died at the age of 80)
Birth Place: Lumbini Garden in Kapilavastu
Parents: Shuddhodana,    Mâyâ (died 7days after   the birth)
Marriage: Marry Yashodarâ at  age of 16
Son:            Râhula
Enlightenment: After  6 years of penance and meditation begun Buddha, under Ashvattha (Bodhi) tree by the river Nairanjanâ near Gayâ
Place of first sermon:  Sârnâth (Migadâya, Deer park)

  Having   secured  the knowledge  of   the  nature of life, he set out to preach to the people the truth that he himself   acquired   through   yogic   contemplation.   The   first   place he visited was Banaras.  It  was a  great  religious center even in his  days.  There  he  preached  his  Dharma   which   was   based upon Ahimsa or Non-violence to the learned men there.All of them appreciated his principle of Dharma and became his disciples. Thereafter  he went   from place   to   place   with   his disciples. The number of his followers was  increasing day by day till several thousands  accepted   his   faith.   Several   persons  followed   him  after renouncing their home and became the ascetics. Thus the monks organized   a   distinct   group   from their lay followers.  After sometime, he admitted women also in the ascetic order. Thus a separate group  of   female   ascetics or nuns was   also   organized. These   ascetic groups of   monks   and   nuns Bhikshus and  Bhikshinis formed a Sanga or the Order of ascetics. Thus arose the 3 great venerable institutions of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. In the course of their time, these 3 were considered of great importance and Buddhistic laymen and ascetics began to worship these 3 jewels - Buddha, Dharma and Sanga.The Philosophy of Buddhism
   According    to  the  philosophy  of   Buddhistic   school,   the   nature   of reality is constituted by  5 Skandas.  These are Rupa, Vigyana, Sagna and Samskara skandas. These   are  further sub-divided into   various   kinds. Rupa Skanda refers to physical  objects. All   physical   objects   belong  to the class of Rupa Skanda. These physical  objects   are   otherwise   called   Ashtaka or of 8  elements. These are the 4 Bhuthas - earth, water, air and fire and the  four   corresponding  sense   qualities - Varna, Rasa,  Gandha   and   Sparsa - colour,   taste,  smell and touch respectively. A mass made of these   8   elements   is called Ashtaka. These   are   momentary existences. The group  appears   at   one   moment   and completely disappears the next moment. The second Vedana  Skanda   is  the   element  of feeling. It is of 3 kinds - Sukha  Vedana,  Dukha Vedana   and Samavedana   which  are  respectively  called the feeling of pleasure, the feeling   of   pain and the   neutral feeling. These are   caused   respectively   by   the 3 kinds of Samskaras - Kusala - right conduct,   Akusala - wrong   conduct   and  Sama Samskara - neutral   activity. Thenext  is Vigyana Skanda or the element of knowledge. This is  of  six  kinds. The 5 sense  experiences together with Manas constitute the six Vigyana Skandas -   elements.   Corresponding   to these 6 kinds of Vigyana Skandas, there are six kinds of three kinds - Manasika, Vachika and Kayika - activity related to thought, word and deed respectively. 
   These 5 Skandas  have  his  characteristic. They appear together and get destroyed  together  in  a   moment. Their   behavior is   analogous  to a flame of light. It is kind of  Ashtaka Pinda. The  8 elements constituting the flame of light appear  and  disappear momentarily  and  yet, the continuity of the flame is maintained. Similar is the behavior of the  5   Skandas. They   appear  and disappear every moment. Yet, they produce the appearance of continuity of things in this world. Besides these 5 constituent elements Skandas,   there is    no such   thing   as a persistent substance. The idea of permanent substance   is   due   to   ignorance  of  the  nature    of  reality according to Buddhistic 
philosophy.   When   you  close your fingers tightly, you call it by name fist. But there is no substance called fist apart from the 5 fingers. When you stretch out your fingers, there  is  no  fist.   Similarly,   when   you assemble the various building materials into a structure,   you   give it   the   name   of  a house. But where is the house apart from the building  materials?  To talk of fist apart from fingers and to talk of a house  apart  from building   materials,   is   to   exhibit   one's   own   ignorance  as to the nature of things. Similarly,   apart   from   the   5   Skandas   which   constitute   the   Purusha, there is no independent reality called Atma. These 5  Skandas which  constitute  the  reality  have the  following  characteristics -  Anitya,  Dukha, Asuchi and Anatma. They are Anitya because they are  momentary and  vanishing,  they  are  Dukha  because  they  are  by nature   painful,   they   are   Asuchi   because   they are impure and they are devoid of underlying   substratum   hence  called   Anatma. One   who  realizes the true nature of  reality will be free from evil, escape from Samsara and will attain Nirvana. This in short is the philosophy and religion of Buddhism. 
  Different Views
  This  view  of  reality  is  rejected  by  the  Jaina  thinkers  because Buddhism cannot  logically   maintain  this   Kshanika   Vada or the  momentary   existence of the reality.The   momentary   series   of   experiences   since   it is not based upon the underlying substratum,   becomes   a series   of   disconnected   items   merely a juxtaposition and having no connection with each other. There can be no causal   connection   between one  item   and   the  succeeding   one   in   the series. Unless you assume the ultimate identity between the antecedent and the   consequent,   you   cannot   explain  why  a particular   antecedent   should   be   succeeded by  a relative identical consequent. If human personality is reduced to a disconnected series of Skandas, there is  no  moral  justification   for   preaching  the Dharma and acting according to it. The entity acting according  to  Dharma vanishes in a moment and the entity that enjoys  the  fruits  of action is quite  different from the actor. The final liberation or Moksha called Nirvana implies mere cassation of the series. It is compared to a flame that is put out. There is nothing left thus in the external physical world as well as the internal   psychic series. 
  Both have nothing as their basis. Thus  the Buddhistic philosophy ends in  Nihilism. The  exact  parallel   to   this in western philosophy is Hume's  Nihilism.  By  a  similar process   of  logic, Hume reduces the external world and also personal consciousness  to the series of sensations and ideas having nothing behind them.
 While rejecting the Buddhistic metaphysics, Jaina thinkers accept the  ethical   code prescribed by Buddhism. Both the schools strictly observe   the   principle of Ahimsa and reject  the   Varnashrama Dharma as a  social   organization.   In   maintaining   the principle of nonviolence, Buddhism in the course of its history, has deviated from the real path. It   justifies meat eating so long as one does not kill the animal  for  his food but purchases meat from the butcher. In the same way, Jaina Darsana in the course of its history compromises  its attitude towards Varnashrama Dharma. The Jainas appear to have assimilated various social customs resulting  from   Varnashrama  distinctions,  thus each has deviated from its original purity.
   Both  schools  suffered  during  the  period of the Hindu revivalism. Due to religious intolerance and persecution. Buddhism was completely exterminated and  Jainism was reduced as a faith of a small minority.




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