Jain World
Sub-Categories of Passions

Ten Universal Virtues

Munishri 108 Kam Kumar Nandi
Message, Foreword, Preface
Hymn To Five Divinties
  Paryushan Parva
  Supreme Forgiveness
  Supreme Tenderness or Humility
  Supreme Uprightness or Honesty
  Supreme Contentment or Purity
  Supreme Truthfulness
  Supreme Self-Restraint
  Supreme Austerities or Penance
  Supreme Renunciation
  Supreme Non-Attachment
  Supreme Chastity
  Kshamavani Parva




     By this time Kankbhat was dead tired of hanging so long. Ultimately he spoke, "My hands are fully unnerved; now my grip of the tree twig is getting loose." Being terrified the two lower persons said, "Oh brother! Do not do so; otherwise all of us will be killed." At this Kankbhat said, "Previously you had claimed money from me to save my life. Now it is my turn. Tell me, what both of you will pay me for it; otherwise I shall leave hold of the tree just now." One of them said, "I shall pay you five hundred rupees," and the second man offered him one thousand rupees. Kamkbhat rejoiced; for he thought, "How fine! I shall get cost free coconuts besides a good amount of money." Indeed, it was a gala day for him. While he was thus fully absorbed in his wishful thinking and greedy thoughts, he lost his grip of the twig and instantly all the three fell into the deep well below. The three met their doom due to excess of greed. Likewise, daily the creatures in all the three worlds are meeting their sad and untimely demise being overpowered with endless greed.

     Rightly has it been said:

     "Greed is the root cause of all crimes and sins." Alas! To what a miserable plight greed leads a man. The evil passion of greed degrades a man so low that he does not hesitate to take off ornaments from the dead bodies of women floating on floodwater. He steals the luggage of persons killed in a train accident or air crash; and loots the goods of earthquake victims under the pretext of doing relief work. Indeed greed knows no end. Given below are the noble words of a great scholar:

     "Contentment is the cheapest, safest and surest remedy for all troubles that may possibly come upon man. Want of it, only augments, intensifies and prolongs the pain, and sometimes perpetuates it."

       There lived a Seth named Sagar Dutt in Kampila city. Although the Seth, who lit the fuel of his heart's ambitions with the fire of deep rooted greed, had inherited ten million gold coins (guineas) from ancestors besides his self earned five million guineas, yet he was extremely greedy. What to speak of the preparation of dainty dishes and sweet meats like ladoos even vegetables were never cooked in his house. He always thought if vegetables were to be cooked, money would have to be spent on oil, chilies and spices, and more foodstuffs would be consumed on its getting tasty. Not only this, he also did not go to anybody's house to take meals or attend a feast. First, because he believed that the tongue becomes addicted to juicy and delicious foods on taking food at others' house; secondly, one day in exchange he will also have to invite the person for meals at his home.

     He would not let even members of his family to take food to their fill. He always told his attendants that a wise man should not waste money on buying oil, ghee, butter, salt, etc., from the market. After once buying the above articles, he should return them to the shopkeeper under the pretext that these were not of the standard quality and the oil stuck to the container should serve his purpose. Besides, he professed that it was foolish to buy perfumed oil to make the body fragrant. On the contrary, one should pass one's hands over the head of the rich men's children for this purpose, so that his own body may also get perfumed with the oil applied in their hair.

     Very often while roaming about he passed through the locality of the oil crushers and enter their houses in order to realize interest on the loaned money. He would pick up from there a piece of oil cake-saying that the oil cake was exhaling a very sweet smell. Therefore, on returning home he would eat boiled rice along with the spiced water and smell the oil cake in between. After taking meals he used to chew the bark of the Peepal tree for mouth wash.

     Once it rained cats and dogs in the city continuously for seven days. The rivers were flooded. Water and only water was seen everywhere in the city. A cold breeze was blowing. The people did not dare to come out of their houses. But at night the greedy Seth Sagar Datt went on the riverbank putting on a loincloth. He jumped into the flooded river and started taking out the fuel wood floating on the floodwater. The king's palace stood on the riverbank. There was lightening and thunder in the sky. In the flash of lightening through the palace window the queen saw Sagar Datt gathering fuel wood and thought in her mind that undoubtedly the poor fellow must be extremely poor. She determined to urge the king to render him monetary help. Consequently, at a proper time the queen said to the king, "O King! You are the savior of your subjects and defender of the poor. An extremely poor person lives in your city. Please help him."

     At the appeal of the queen the king sent for the man and spoke to him, "O distressed fellow! It seems that you are a pauper like a church mouse. Therefore, I want to help you. Tell me, what do you need?" To this Sagar Datt replied, "I need a bullock." The king said, "There are so many bullocks in my cattle-shed. Take away anyone you choose." Accordingly on going through the bullocks in the king's cattle-shed, Sagar Dutt came back and spoke, "O king! I need a bullock resembling the bullock in my home. Your cattle-shed has not even a single bullock to match the one present at my house." Then the king said, "Bring your bullock and show me its specialty." Seth Sagar Dutt said, "Your majesty! My bullock never goes out of the door." Hearing this king's astonishment knew no bounds. At length the king said, All right, I shall myself pay a visit to your house to see your bullock." These words of the king perplexed Sagar Dutt. He could not utter a word; rather his heart began to throb with the fear that the next day the king would pay a visit to his house and come to know about his boundless wealth. If out of greed the king by chance demanded a little of his vast wealth from him, what would he do then? On returning home he suffered from fever.

     The next day the king went to Sagar Datt's house accompanied by his queen. Seeing his boundless wealth, elephants and horses the king was bewitched. He began to think at heart, "Alas! In spite of possessing so much of wealth, this greedy person is undergoing through so many tortures. Cursed be this greed." The wife and sons of Sagar Datt said to him, "The king and the queen have made our house pure by their presence. We should entertain them and extend them proper and grand reception according to their high status. Hence, dear father! Offer this plate full of jewels and pearls to the king."

     On much insistence by his kith and kin, when Sagar Dutt picked up the plate full of pearls and diamonds, his hands began to waver. The king was also filled with remorse seeing the insatiable greed of the Seth despite possessing such a vast wealth. Therefore, he returned without accepting any present from the Seth. After sometime the greedy Seth breathed his last and after death was reborn in his own house as a snake. It sat coiling the boundless riches in the home. Seeing the snake in the treasure house, his sons sent for a snake charmer who brutally catching hold of the snake took it out of the home. Thereafter, being dead the snake took birth in hell.

     Hence, one should never indulge in excessive greed for wealth and prosperity; otherwise one has to bear a miserable plight like that of Sagar Datt. Beware, "O Greed, what great crimes and sins have not been committed in thy name by persons overpowered by thee." There is another example to prove the moral debasement caused by greed:

     After completing his ten years educational study course at Banaras, a Pandit returned to his home city. His father was a renowned landlord and a highly dignified person. He exerted a great influence in the locality. The city people were overjoyed at his son's return after becoming highly learned and educated. They extended proper welcome to him and put him several searching questions about life. He gave quite satisfactory replies to all the questions. His scholarship left a deep impression on all the people. But all of a sudden a man questioned him, " Panditji, please tell me who is the perpetuator of sin?" Panditji was perturbed on hearing this quite simple question. When the people received no satisfactory answer from Panditji, the man said, "Panditji, you have come back after ten year long study at Banaras, but you failed to answer my simple question. You have wasted the money of your father." The helpless Pandit stared blank in the face of the man.

     Panditji returned home with a heavy heart. He could not sleep at night. He pondered deeply in his mind, "Today I have suffered great disgrace; how should I show my face in the city now. It will be proper for me to go back to Banaras and find solution to this question." Lo! At dawn Panditji left home and set out for Kashi (Banaras). While he was on his way to Banaras on foot the evening fell. He took shelter on a platform in front of a well-built house in a village. After supper he spread his bedding on the platform and lay down there. Due to great fatigue he succumbed to sound sleep as soon as he lay down. He did not wake up and lay there for a long time even after sunrise in the morning.