Jainism has a unique view of the universe.
It believes the universe is uncreated, self-existent, beginningless,
eternal, and infinite. It is an aggregation of six substances (Dravyas):
Soul (Jiva), Matter (Pudgala), Principle of
Motion ( Dharma), principle of Rest (Adharma), Space (Akasa), Time (Kala).
Substance consists of attributes and modes. Attributes are the essential
features of the substance and always occupy the substance, whereas modes
are the changing features of the substance. If substance is characterized
in terms of its attributes, it is nonchanging and eternal. But if viewed
from the perspective of its modes, it is regarded as changing and
Jain cosmology refers to our limited world
as Loka. Beyond this there is the unlimited world of Aloka. The
principles of Dharma and adharma only operate in Loka where the Soul and
Matter are located. Loka is divided into three parts; the upper universe
where celestial beings dwell, the middle universe occupied by humans and
animals, and the lower universe in which the wicked reside.
The fundamental substance of Soul and Matter
are thought of as interdependent. This connection eventuates in the
creation of pleasure and pain for the soul as a result of its involvement
in Karmic matter. This can be clarified by describing the human
predicament and the role of Karma.