Virtues and vices are states of the individual, and can never be
transmitted or transferred from one person to another. Each person
develops his own state of virtue, just as he develops his own knowledge.
We cannot impart virtue; we cannot impart knowledge. By talking to a
person, we supply the means whereby he can develop knowledge.
PARTIAL TRANSGRESSIONS OF THE FIRST VOW
As was the case with the thirty-five rules of conduct, so with these
twelve special rules, the practice of them is internal as well as
external; and in the partial transgressions given below, it is the
internal practice of the rules that is broken, while in the external way
the rule or vow is not broken. In all these vows, the chief ideas are
partial self-control, and love, and in the partial transgressions, now to
be given, this self-control and kindliness are absent.
Angrily or carelessly tying up an animal or a human being. When
tying up is absolutely necessary, it should be done so that in case of
fire the animal can quickly be undone, and the human being can undo
himself. As a matter of fact, the Jain philosophy teaches that a person
who practices these vows, ought not to keep such animals as have to be
Unnecessarily striking or beating or whipping; or doing so on a
delicate or tender part of the body.
Cutting or piercing, without a necessary cause. Docking horses'
tails would come under this heading.
Overloading an animal or person, through greed or any reason but
Withholding food or drink, without a real necessary reason.
There are other ways in which this first vow may be partially
transgressed, but the above five ways are given as illustrations.
It is the opinion of the Jain Philosophy that the result of the
observance of this vow is good health, a strong body, and a strong
constitution in the future life. No separation from friends, relatives, or
parents. There would be happiness, the legitimate pleasures of life,
comforts, long life; he will have a good name, handsome features, and an
The results of killing would be the opposite of these things, such as
lameness, some incurable disease, separation from friends and relatives,
sorrow, short life, and after that, an incarnation in a low state (animal
SECOND VOW (Sthula-Mrsavada-Viramana Vrata)
Refraining from telling gross falsehoods. Falsehoods are gross, when there
is an evil intention and a knowledge that the statement is false.
There are various kinds of falsehoods, for instance, those told about
persons, those told about animals, about goods, ground, etc. Another kind
is, when we deny the receipts of anything left with us on deposit. Another
kind is the giving of false evidence, either in or out of court. These are
illustrations of gross falsehoods.
Then there are the following four classes of Falsehoods, namely, the
denial of a fact; the affirmation of that which does not exist; calling a
thing something other than what it is; statements that are injurious to
other, for instance, "Well, Mr. Blindman, how are you?" or such
injunctions as "Go and steal."
Lies and falsehoods are spoken by reason of certain states of mind;
certain states of mind are forces which impel us to the speaking of
falsehoods. The following are such states:
Anger; when angry, we make false statements and may tell even
Pride; deceitfulness; greed; false attachment; hatred or false
aversion; laughing or joking; fear; any form of slavery induces fear and
people who are under the control of others tell lies through fear. False
politeness is a cause of falsehoods; as is also sorrow, - we ignorantly
blame others, when we are in grief or sorrow.
The above causes may impel to the telling of such lies as are not
possible to be avoided by the layman; it is only gross falsehoods that he
undertakes to avoid.
So the vow would be something like the following: "I shall refrain from
telling falsehoods about any person, animal, or thing, knowingly, and with
the intention of injury to some one." Or, " I shall not with
predetermination tell a falsehood when I am conscious of the injury it
will do." Or, simply, "I shall refrain from telling gross lies."
And further, the vow may be taken in several ways: for instance, to
observe it only in speech, or only mentally, or only bodily, or in all
Also to observe the vow, only so far as doing it oneself is concerned;
or, as far as causing others to tell gross falsehoods, or, as far as
consenting to the telling of falsehoods by others is concerned, or all
three of these, thus making nine ways of telling gross falsehoods (three
The following are illustrations of some ways in which this vow is
Rashly, as distinguished from intentionally, making a false
accusation; if you rashly call a man a thief when he is not, for
Giving an order that is harmful to others, rashly. If done
intentionally, it is breaking the vow.
Seeing two persons talking in secret, to say that you know that
secret, and that they are talking against the king or officers, even
though as a matter of fact, you have not heard or known their talk -
Making a false document, when done carelessly without inquiring into
the matter, is a partial transgression for those who take this vow, only
so far as speech is concerned. For those who undertake to refrain from
telling gross lies, a false document made intentionally is a breach of
Divulging the secrets of wife (spouse), or friend, unintentionally.
These vows are undertakings to exercise self-control and kindness, so
as to refrain from injuring others; and when, as in the above
transgressions, there is both rashness or carelessness of speech, and the
speech is harmful to some one, then there is partial transgression, even
if the actual words used are true; the vow is not fully carried out in
The results of observing this vow are that people trust you; that you
accomplish your best object (otherwise you try to do something and fail);
you are liked; and then there are good results which come in the future
THIRD VOW (Sthula-Adattadana-Viramana Vrata)
Refraining from gross forms of taking what is not given; theft.
The idea in theft is taking other people's property, without the
consent of the owner. The gross form is when the thing taken is considered
by its owner to have a value, and the mild form is when the thing taken is
not considered by the owner or, generally, to have any value. The mild
form is not a breach of the vow, but those who take the vow should try to
avoid the mild form of theft also.
The result of the observance of this vow is that you are trusted, and
in that way you prosper. Also the character is developed. If the choice
not to steal is not made, or if it is soiled, then the result is
untrustworthiness, also there is legal punishment, also you cannot carry
out your ideas on account of not being trusted. And in the future life you
are dependent upon others for your maintenance, and are in a miserable
The following are illustrations of partial transgressions of this vow.
Giving orders to thieves to go on with their work; or supplying or
manufacturing burglars' tools.
Buying or accepting stolen property; you have possession, without
the consent of the real owner, although you did not actually steal it.
Smuggling; also supplying an enemy with goods in time of war.
Using false weights and measures.
Counterfeiting, adulterating, etc.
FOURTH VOW (Sva-Dara-Santosa, Para-Dara-Viramana Vrata)
The fourth special rule for laymen is with reference to the sex
passion. It is sometimes spoken of as the act of procreation; but this is
not accurate, because there is not that motive, as is shown by the facts
that preventatives are adopted, that the act is done in secret, more than
once a year, and is acknowledged with shame. In order to show the nature
of the passion, the following ten points are given:
In Dr. Nicholson's book on Zoology it is stated that the act of
procreation is very wakening to the person, bodily and mentally, and is
According to the Jain philosophy (and other philosophies also), the
creative fluid can be changed into a higher substance which can be used
for spiritual purposes, if it is known how to change it. It gives, in
fact, a strong will.
There is a special Jain teaching, which is not the teaching of any
other philosophical system, that in every act of sexual intercourse nine
hundred thousand living beings, very minute, of the shape of the human
being, and having the five senses, but no mind, are generated and killed.
This must be taken on the faith of the teaching of the "Arhat" or
Master; but then he has those eighteen characteristics which were
It is an infatuating force which obscures right belief and right
action; the virtues are all set aside at the time; also is reason.
It is the opinion of the Jain philosophy that the plans, ideas,
intentions, and schemes of a person, who is full of excessive passion do
not bear fruit; or if they do that, it is owing to the working of "karma"
or foreign energy. The mind is all the time on beautiful women.