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Jaina Sutras, Part II (SBE45), tr. by Hermann Jacobi, [1895], at



Earth, water, fire, wind; grass, trees, and corn; and the movable beings, (viz.) the oviparous, viviparous, those generated from dirt, and those generated in fluids 1; (1)

These classes (of living beings) have been declared (by the Ginas); know and understand that they (all desire) happiness; by (hurting) these beings (men) do harm to their own souls, and will again and again be born as one of them. (2)

Every being born high or low in the scale of the living creation, among movable and immovable beings, will meet with its death. Whatever sins the evildoer commits in every birth, for them he must die 2. (3)

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In this world or in the next (the sinners suffer themselves what they have inflicted on other beings), a hundred times, or (suffer) other punishment. Living in the Samsâra they ever acquire new Karman, and suffer for their misdeeds. (4)

Some leave their mother and father to live as Sramanas, but they use fire; (the prophet) says: 'People are wicked who kill beings for the sake of their own pleasure.' (5)

He who lights a fire, kills living beings; he who extinguishes it, kills the fire. Therefore a wise man who well considers the Law, should light no fire. (6)

Earth contains life, and water contains life; jumping (or flying) insects fall in (the fire); dirt-born vermin 1 (and beings) living in wood: all these beings are burned by lighting a fire. (7)

Sprouts are beings possessed of natural development 2, their bodies (require) nourishment, and all have their individual life. Reckless men who cut them down out of regard for their own pleasure, destroy many living beings. (8)

By destroying seeds, when young or grown up, a careless man does harm to his own soul. (The prophet) says: 'People are wicked who destroy seeds for the sake of their own pleasure.' (9)

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Men die as embryos, or as babies who do not yet talk, or who do so already; other men, as boys wearing five tufts of hair 1, or as youths, or in middle age: at the expiration of their life all leave the body and die. (to)

Wake up, men! If we look at the dangers (to which he is exposed) a fool has not much chance to obtain human birth; always suffering like men in fever, people will go to utter misery. (11)

Some say that perfection is reached by abstaining from the seasoner of food (viz. salt) 2, others by the use of cold water (i.e. by ablutions) 3, others again by (tending) a fire 4. (12)

Perfection is not reached by bathing in the morning, nor by abstention from acids and salt; but by drinking liquor or eating meat or garlic men obtain another state of existence (than perfection). (13)

Those who, touching water in the morning and evening, contend that perfection is obtained through water (are easily refuted). For if perfection could be obtained by contact with water, many beings living in water must have reached perfection: (14)

Fishes, tortoises, aquatic snakes, cormorants,

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otters 1, and demons living in water. The clever ones declare those to be wrong who maintain that perfection may be obtained through water. (15)

If water did wash off the impure Karman, it must take off merit too. But this (assertion of the heretics) has no foundation but their wish. As a blind man follows a guide (and misses his goal), so a fool (who makes ablutions, &c. as a means of reaching Môksha) kills living beings. (16)

If water did wash off the sins of him who committed them, some would have obtained perfection who killed water-beings. Therefore he is wrong who maintains the attainment of perfection through water. (17)

Those who, lighting fire in the morning and evening, contend that perfection is obtained through fire (are easily refuted). For if thereby perfection could be obtained, mechanics also, who use fire, would be liberated. (18)

Perfection cannot be established by such gratuitous assertions; those who have not learned the truth will come to harm. A wise man, who knows the truth, should know and understand that all beings desire happiness. (19)

All creatures who have committed sins wail, suffer, and tremble. Considering this a wise monk who has ceased to sin, and guards his own self, should abstain from violence with regard to movable and (immovable) beings. (20)

He who keeps a store of rightly-obtained food and eats it; he who makes ablutions with pure water,

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contracting his limbs; he who washes and adorns his clothes, is far from being a naked monk. (21)

A wise man, seeing that it is sinful (to use) water, should live of pure water, till he is liberated from the Samsâra 1; not eating seeds and bulbs, he abstains from bathing, &c., and from women. (22)

He who, after having left father, mother, house, sons, cattle, and wealth, visits houses where he gets nice food, is far from being a Sramana. (23)

He who visits houses where he gets nice food, who professes the Law, desirous only of filling his belly, and brags (of himself) for the sake of food, is not equal to the hundredth part of an Ârya. (24)

A miserable man, who becomes a monk in order to get food from others, and a flatterer by the desire of filling his belly, will, in no remote future, come to harm, even as a boar greedy of wild rice 2. (25)

The servile man says pleasing things for the sake of food, drink, and other things: but wrong belief and bad conduct are worthless like chaff. (26)

He should beg where he is unknown, and maintain himself by it; he should not seek fame and respect by his austerities; he should not desire (pleasant) sounds and colours, but conquer his longing for all kinds of pleasures. (27)

A monk should avoid every attachment and bear every pain, be full (of wisdom), not greedy, wander about homeless, give assurance of safety (to all beings), and be free from passions. (28)

(In order to be able) to practise control 3 a monk should eat; he should desire to get rid of sin; if he

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suffers pain, he should have recourse to control, and subdue the foe at the head of the battle, as it were. (29)

Though beaten he should be like a plank 1; he should wait for the advent of death; having annihilated his Karman he should not again mix with the world, but be rather like a car whose axle is broken. (30)

Thus I say.


292:1 The last two classes are, according to the commentators, (1) lice, bugs, &c.; (2) beings like cotton threads in thick milk, sour barley gruel, &c. Apparently vibrios are meant.

292:2 Miggati = mîyatê. Another rendering offered by Sîlâṅka is 'he will be filled (by Karman).'

293:1 Viz. insects originated in dung, &c. used as fuel.

293:2 Vilambaga; the commentators in explanation of this word say that plants, like men, go through all states of development, youth, ripe age, old age, &c. I think vilambaga is derived from vidambaka, they imitate (the development of animals). For if I understand Sîlâṅka aright, a plant contains a great many bhûtas or beings, each localised in a certain part of the plant, as roots, &c. This is, according to him, the meaning of pudhôsiyâni, rendered in the text 'have their individual life.'

294:1 Pañkasikha. It usually denotes certain ascetics: but Sîlâṅka here renders it kumâra 'boy.'

294:2 Sîlâṅka notices two different readings: (1) âhârasappañkagavagganenam, by abstaining from food seasoned with one of the five kinds of salt (viz. saindhava, sauvarkala, vida, rauma, sâmudra); (2) âhâraô pañkaga°, by abstaining from five kinds of food: garlic, onion, young camels' milk, beef, liquor.

294:3 Sîlâṅka mentions the Vâribhadrakas, a subdivision of the Bhâgavatas, as belonging to this category. He states elsewhere that they eat saivala (Vallisneria Octandra) and frequently bathe, wash themselves, and drink water.

294:4 Viz. Tâpasas and Brâhmanas.

295:1 Utta or uttha, explained as 'a kind of aquatic animal;' the Sanskrit prototype is apparently udra, but the commentators render it ushtra!

296:1 Âi = âdi.

296:2 Cf. p. 265, verse 16.

296:3 Bhârassa gâyâ = bhârasya ( = samyamasya) yâtrâ.

297:1 Phalagâvatatthi = phalagavad avatashtah. Sîlâṅka gives the following explanation: As a plank planed on both sides becomes thin, so a sâdhu, by reducing his body by exterior and interior tapas, grows thin, of weak body.

Next: Book 1, Lecture 8: On Exertion