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Jaina Sutras, Part II (SBE22), tr. by Hermann Jacobi, [1884], at


The (living) world is afflicted, miserable, difficult to instruct, and without discrimination. In this world full of pain, suffering by their different acts, see the benighted ones cause great pain. (1) See! there are beings individually embodied (in earth; not one all-soul). See! there are men who

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control themselves, (whilst others only) pretend to be houseless (i.e. monks, such as the Bauddhas, whose conduct differs not from that of householders), because one destroys this (earth-body) by bad and injurious doings, and many other beings, besides, which he hurts by means of earth, through his doing acts relating to earth. (2) About this the Revered One has taught the truth: for the sake of the splendour, honour, and glory of this life, for the sake of birth, death, and final liberation, for the removal of pain, man acts sinfully towards earth, or causes others to act so, or allows others to act so. This deprives him of happiness and perfect wisdom. About this he is informed when he has understood or heard, either from the Revered One or from the monks, the faith to be coveted. (3) There are some who, of a truth, know this (i.e. injuring) to be the bondage, the delusion, the death, the hell. For this 1 a man is longing when he destroys this (earth-body) by bad, injurious doings, and many other beings, besides, which he hurts by means of earth, through his doing acts relating to earth. Thus I say. (4)

As somebody may cut or strike a blind man (who cannot see the wound), as somebody may cut or strike the foot, the ankle, the knee, the thigh, the hip, the navel, the belly, the flank, the back, the bosom, the heart, the breast, the neck, the arm, the finger, the nail, the eye, the brow, the forehead, the head, as some kill (openly), as some extirpate

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[paragraph continues] (secretly), (thus the earth-bodies are cut, struck, and killed though their feeling is not manifest). (5)

He who injures these (earth-bodies) does not comprehend and renounce the sinful acts; he who does not injure these, comprehends and renounces the sinful acts. Knowing them, a wise man should not act sinfully towards earth, nor cause others to act so, nor allow others to act so. H e who knows these causes of sin relating to earth, is called a reward-knowing sage. Thus I say. (6)


3:2 After the chief tenets of Gainism with regard to soul and actions have briefly been stated in the first lesson, the six remaining lessons of the first lecture treat of the actions which injure the six classes of lives or souls. The Gainas seem to have arrived at their concept of soul, not through the search after the Self, the self-existing unchangeable principle in the ever-changing world of phenomena, but through the perception of life. For the most general Gaina term for soul is life (gîva), which is identical with self (âyâ, âtman). There are numberless lives or souls, not only embodied in animals, men, gods, hell-beings (tasa, trasa), and plants (vanassaî, vanaspati), but also in the four elements--earth, water, fire, wind. Earth, &c., regarded as the abode of lives is called earth-body, &c. These bodies are only perceptible when an infinite number of them is united in one place. The earth-lives, &c., possess only one organ, that of feeling; they have undeveloped (avyakta)intellect and feelings (vedanâ), but no limbs, &c. The doctrines about these elementary lives are laid down in Bhadrabâhu's Niryukti of our Sûtra, and are commented upon in Sîlâṅka's great commentary of it. They are very abstruse, and deal in the most minute distinctions, which baffle our comprehension.

4:1 Ikk’ attham. The commentators think this to be a reference to the sentence, For the sake of the splendour, &c. It would be more natural to connect it with the foregoing sentence; the meaning is, For bondage, &c., men commit violence, though they believe it to be for the happiness of this life.

Next: Book I, Lecture 1, Lesson 3