The system of thought.
The three pronouncements.
Shraman Bhagwan Mahavir expounded and established the
Dharma (the Jain philosophy) and communicated it to his first disciple,
Indrabhuti Gautam Swami and ten other Ganadhars (Chief disciples) in three
statements which constitute the foundation of the Jain philosophy; and a
comprehensive statement of its essentials. These three statements are
known as Tripati.
1) Upanneyi Va - There is production of matter:
2) Vigameyi Va - Matter gets destroyed:
3) Dhuveyi Va - Matter is permanent:
Sat is Dravya. It is matter. Though it may appear in
various forms, it is permanent in its original and essential form. It is
permanent. It remains in its original form. It is called Padarth or
substance. This matter assumes various transformations. It has its
original form as well as its changed forms.
Changes are taking place every moment in matter and in
every aspect of it. Production and destruction are endless processes. But
on account of these changes, Matter does not experience any loss in its
Matter as Dravya remains permanent and sound. But
changes occur and changed forms are destroyed. For this reason, the Jain
dharma does not consider any matter either as always permanent or as
always transitory. When we notice the destruction of substance. it is not
really loss or destruction but only a change or a transformation of
matter. For instance, when charcoal is burnt to ash, the charcoal is not
really destroyed. it combines with the oxygen present in the air and
According to the Jain Dharma the number of substances
present now, were existing in the past and will be in existence. in the
future. There will be no reduction or increase in this. All
transformations assume those forms according to their properties and
potentialities; and in course of time, they get destroyed and cease to
exist in that form. Dravya in its original and essential form remains
The organization of the universe.
The Jain philosophical thinking on creation and
The Jain dharma believes that this universe Is without
a beginning; and without an end. The universe did not begin at any time
and it will not end at any time. The Jain Dharma totally rejects the
theory that God created this universe; or that he made this world. If the
theory of creation is accepted as true, countless problems crop up.
If God created this universe, who created that God ?
Who created the creator who created God ? Such questions keep cropping up
and there is no end to it. Which came first? The hen or the egg? The night
or the day? There is no end to these questions; and there are no answers
Who is God?
Why did God create this world or this universe? Only he
can be called God who is omniscient, omnipotent, and who is devoid of
desires, and passions.
If God really has these attributes, then why did he
create this world which is groaning in agony and anguish ? If really God
is such why did he steep 87.5 percent of the people of this world in
poverty, misery and want; and why did he bestow prosperity and happiness
on the remaining 12.5 per cent? Why?
If God has created such a world impelled by his desire
or curiosity, then the question arises whether he can be called God at all
if he is a thrall to passions and desires. How can we say that God is "Karunanidhi,,
(treasure of benevolence) if he causes sorrow to others for his pleasure?
Desire is the greatest of all evils. With evil in him how can he be God ?
How can divinity manifest itself in him?
"God gives happiness or sorrow to people, in proportion
to their merits or demerits (good deeds or sins),,. If we believe this
statement to be true, then the questions arises: Why did he give some
people the will and ability to do good deeds? Why did he give them the
virtuous mind that enables them to do good deeds? So that they may
experience happiness and prosperity as a result of it or vice-versa, But
why has he given a majority of people a wicked mind that compels them to
do evil? Do they not, on account of it, suffer from poverty, hunger and
want in their lives? They commit evil deeds; and he allows them to do
them; and then he punishes them for them. What kind of justice is this?
The judge himself allows the evil deeds to be committed; and hence the
judge himself deserves punishment.
Instead of getting caught in the meshes of such
questions, it would be better to consider the universe as being devoid of
any beginning. We have to think that after all some truth is without a
beginning; then why is it not possible to consider that the universe
itself is without a beginning ? This belief at least frees us from the
conflict of problems that defy any solution.
How can it be said that "In this universe all creatures
are God's images and that they are his shadows?" This cannot be true
because when God is free from all bondages all atmas - souls also should
be free. If God is in bliss and if he is free from misery, then all
creatures who are his images or sparks must be in bliss. There should be
no need for any one to trudge upon the hard path of salvation. All should
be like God. But this is not the case.
Every creature living in this universe possesses a
separate and independent existence and individuality. Every one's soul is
independent. Everyone has a separate existence. Every creature has to put
forth its own efforts to get deliverance from the bondage of Karmas and to
attain salvation because Dharma is essentially a personal affair. It is an
attainment to be made by one's own self.
The bondage and deliverance of each individual belong
to himself or herself. The experience of happiness or sorrow belongs to
each individual and it is his own. Therefore, the Jain Dharma says:
This universe has not been created by God; but
has been revealed by him. He does not create this universe.. he does not
rule it; does not govern it; and does not direct it and "the creation is
such". God surely reveals to us the real nature and form of the universe.
Seeing with his divine eyes, he reveals the essential and real form of the
universe. The Tirthankar Bhagwant has said: The world is without a
beginning. It has no beginning. It has no end. This creation is boundless
being devoid of a beginning and an end. But it is present in the flow and
flux of time. The universe sometimes grows small. Creation and
destruction; production and disposal are always going on. Behind this
eternal process there does not exist anyone's planning or organization.
The whole universe is a self-regulated one. But in this organization,
Karma plays an important role. In this process the effect of Karma is