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Doctrine of Karman in Jain Philosophy

PREFACE TO THE GERMAN EDITION by Dr. Helmuth von Glasenapp
The contents of first volume of the Karmagranthas.
PREFACE TO THE ENGLISH EDITION by Dr. Helmuth von Glasenapp
TRANSLATOR'S NOTE
  INTRODUCTION
  THE KARMAN IN ITSELF
  THE KARMAN IN THEIR RELATION TO THE SOUL AND TO ONE ANOTHER
  THE QUALITIES OF THE SOUL
  STATES OF EXISTENCE AND CLASSES OF BEINGS
  THE CAUSES OF THE KARMAN AND THE MEANS FOR ITS ANNIHILATION
  THE WAY OF SALVATION
  THE 14 GUNASTHANAKAS
  THE STATE OF THE RELEASED

THE QUALITIES OF THE SOUL


 

 

THE FACULTY OF COGNITION OF THE SOUL.

Kg. I, 100a 133b, II 10a; Ps. 10 et seq.; Lp. III 701 et seq.; Tattv. II 8,9.

 

The first and most important characteristic of the soul (jiva) is its capability of cognition. If the soul is completely free from the disturbing influence of matter, it is capable of recognizing everything in the present, past and future, all the substances and all their conditions. If it is however infected by karman-matter, this absolute cognition disappears. Matter veils the omniscience of the soul, as a dense veil of clouds hides the light of the sun. But as, although the sun may be veiled, some light is breaking through the clouds, so there also, in spite of the influence of matter, a fraction of the faculty of cognition is preserved to the jiva: for, if the jiva would also lose this, he would no longer be a jiva. This fraction of cognition is of different dimensions in different beings. In some it is very large: they are capable of perceiving absent material things and even the thoughts of others by means of transcendental perception; in most of them, however, it is only small, as they can only perceive by means of their senses.

 

The cognition of a thing can be of two kinds: either it is restricted to the grasping of it in its general outlines, in its notional generality; then it is called darsana "undifferentiated cognition"; or it grasps a things with its individual attributes; then it is called jnana "knowledge". Darsana is therefore formaliter not differentiated cognition (anakaraupayoga), jnana formaliter differentiated cognition (sakara-upayoga).

 

Darsana occurs in 4 species, namely as:

1)   caksur-darsana, when produced through the medium of the eye.

2)   acaksur-darsana, when produced through the medium of the other four senses and the manas.

3)   avadhi-darsana, if it occurs on its own account, without the mediation of organs.

4)   kevala-darsana, if it is unlimited, absolute and direct.

 

The acksur-darsana is existence in all beings, the caksur-darsana in all who possess an organ of sight. The avadhi-darsana, the transcendental cognition of corporeal things, only exists innately in celestial and infernal beings, but can also arise in fully developed animals endowed with reason and in men, through ksayopasama. The kevala-darsana only occurs with kevalins, with men the darsanavarana-karmans of whom are completely annihilated.

 

There are 5 species of jnana, namely:

1)   mati-jnana, the knowledge through the medium of the 5 senses and manas.

2)   sruta-jnana, the knowledge which is based on the interpretation of signs, the understanding of words, writings, gestures, etc.

3)   avadhi-jnana, the transcendental knowledge of corporeal things, occurring without the medium of organs.

4)   manahparyaya-jnana, the transcendental knowledge of the thoughts of others, occurring without the medium of organs.

5)   kevala-jnana, unlimited, absolute, direct omniscience.

 

The kevala-jnana only exists in kevalins, the manahparyaya-jnana only with men on a high spiritual plane, who have true belief. The 3 other species of knowledge can occur however- the avadhi-jnana with similar limitations as the corresponding darsana-in all beings endowed with reason, even in unbelievers. But as knowledge is bad (kutsita) as long as it is not supported by the true belief, because the unbeliever "conceives things existing and non-existing without distinction and arbitrarily, the jnana of the mithyadrsti is called "a-jnana" "bad knowledge, ignorance." Thus to the foregoing 5 species of knowledge three more must still be added, namely the ajnanas of the above-mentioned 3 species of knowledge (mati-, sruta-, ajnana). All jivas have therefore ajnana until they have reached the true belief, but jnana from the moment of the attainment of samyaktva. Beings whose belief consists of true and false elements, have partly jnana, partly ajnana.

 

In worldly souls occur 1 to 4 of the 8 species of knowledge and 1 to 3 of the species of undifferentiated cognition. The kevalins, however, have only kevala-jnana and kevala-darsana, be it, because in these two, already all species of knowledge and undifferentiated cognition are implicitly existing-as in the ownership of a village the possession of its ground and land is included (Kg. II 11a)- or be it, because the absolute knowledge so outshines every kind of partial knowledge, that no longer attention is paid to them, as to the stars at sunrise (Lp. III 964).

 

THE ACTIVITY OF THE SOUL.

Kg. I, 85b et seq., 98 et seq., 123 a et seq., 146a ; II, 44 a et seq., 93b , 99 et seq., 102b; KP. 3 a et seq.; Ps. 4 et seq., 17 et seq., 32 et seq., 88 et seq., 719 et seq.; Lp. III, 1243; Tattv. II, 26 V, 44, VI, 1, 7, 9; Gandhi 57.

 

The jiva possesses not only the faculty of cognition, but also activity. The Jaina philosophy occupies herein, as well as Nyaya and Vaisesika, the position of the kriyavada, in contrast with most of the other Indian systems, which deny every activity to the soul.

 

The soul has virya "energy" "infinite capacities of activity ". This innate quality manifest itself only if the jiva is free from all karman-matter. As long as the virya-antaraya-k is operating, the virya is, although not completely eliminated, nevertheless exceedingly restricted. It does not manifest itself spontaneously, as is the case with released souls, but it is bound to matter. It needs an organ as "accompanying cause" (sahakarikarana), in order to be able to act; it needs the medium of the body, the organ of speech and manas, in order to manifest itself. This form of virya, bound to matter, is called yoga (activity).

 

The characteristic mark of the activity is its causing the movement of the particles of the soul. It attracts the matter which is necessary for the body, the organ of speech and manas, changes it into the specific essence of these organs and, finally, emits it again. Because it continually conveys matter to the soul, it is the chief cause of the assimilation of new karman; salvation is therefore only possible, if every yoga has disappeared.

 

The activity of the soul is threefold: it consists in thoughts, words and deeds and is, therefore, produced through the manas, the organ of speech and the body. The two first species of activity are subdivided into 4 groups, the last into 7.

 

mano-yoga, activity of the organ of thinking. It has 4 species: 

1)   satya "true". The manas occupies itself with the thinking about a thing that is true.

2)   asatya "untrue". The manas occupies itself with the thinking about a thing that is not true.

3)   satyamrsa "true and untrue". The manas thinks of something that is partly true, partly untrue. For instance, it thinks: "this is an Asoka-wood". But in reality, it is the question of a wood, in which truly there are many Asoka-trees, but in which there are also growing Dhavala-, Khadira-, Palasa- and other trees.

4)   asatyamrsa "neither true nor untrue". The manas thinks of something that lies outside the sphere of true and untrue, e.g. "Devadatta, give me the cow".

vag-yoga, activity of speech. The 4 species correspond to those of the mano-yoga.

kaya-yoga, activity of the bodies, namely:

1)   audarika-kaya-yoga, activity of the physical body.

2)   vaikriya-kaya-yoga, activity of the transformation-body.

3)   aharaka-kaya-yoga, activity of the translocation-body.

4)   karmana-kaya-yoga, activity of the karman-body; it manifests itself chiefly during the period between death and re-incarnation.

5)   audarika-misra-kaya-yoga, activity of the physical body mixed with the activity of the karman-body.

6)   vaikriya-misra-kaya-yoga, activity of the transformation-body mixed with that of the karman-body or with that of the audarika-body.

7)   aharaka-misra-kaya-yoga, activity of the translocation-body, mixed with that of the physical body.

 

The 3 last mentioned species of activity take place as long as the physical body, or one of the other two bodies, is not yet quite developed that is to say, if united with the karman-body shortly after birth, or if united with the physical body during the time when the translocation or transformation-body of the ascetic is not yet quite ready.