Jainworld
Jain World
Sub-Categories of Passions

Jivaraja Jaina Granthmala, No. 20

General Editorial
Preface to The First Edition
Preface to The Second Edition
Synoptic Philosophy
  Approach to Reality
  The Jaina Theory of the Soul
  Critique of Knowledge
  The Doctrine of Karma in Jaina Philosophy
  The Pathway to Perfection
  In this Our Life
  Men and Gods

THE JAINA  THEORY OF THE SOUL

 

 

The first characteristic of the soul is upayoga. The word upayoga is difficult to define. It is the source of experience.  The cognitive, conative and effective aspects spring from it.  It is differentia of the living organism.  Umasvati says that upayoga is the essential characteristic of the soul.[18] Upayoga has conative prominence. Upayoga is that by which a function is served: upayujyate anena iti upayogah.  It is also described as that by which a subjct is grasped. [19] In the Gommatasara: Jivakanda, Upayoga is described as the drive which leads to the apprehension of objects.[20] It is the source of the psychical aspect of experience. It gives rise to the experience of objects, and the experience expresses itself in forms of jnana and darsana. Upayoga is of two types: anakdra, formless, and sakdra, possessed of form.  Anakara Upayoga is formless, indeterminate cognition.  Sakara Upayoga is indeterminate cognition, a defined form of experience. It would not be out of place to point out that upayoga is not the resultant of consciousness as it is some-times maintained. This was one of the earlier attempts to translate upayoga. Nor is it a sort of inclination arising from consciousness. It is the conative drive which gives rise to experience. It is, in fact, the source of all experience.  The Jaina philosophers were aware of the driving force of experience, the force by which experience is possible. This may be likened to the 'horme' of the modern psychologists.  It may be called horme in the sense that McDougall has used the term. It is a

vital impulse or urge to action. Nunn has stated that horme is the basis of activity that differentiates the living animal from dead matter.  It is like Schopenhauer's 'will to live', and Bergson's 'elan vital'.  Jnana and darsana are manifestations of upayoga.

 

The biological studies of the lower animals from the amoeba onwards show that all animals are centres of energy in constant dynamical relation with the world, yet confronting it in their own characteristic way. A name was needed to express this fundamental property of life, the drive or a felt tendency towards a particular end. Some psychologists called it 'conation' or the conative process. But this drive may not always be conscious.

 

There is the presence of an internal drive in such processes. "To this drive or urge, whether it occurs in the conscious life of men and the higher animals we propose to give a single name.....horme".'[21] This activity of the mind is a funlamental property of life. It has various other names like 'the will to live' 'elan vital', the life urge and the libida.  Horme under one form or another has been the fundamental postulate of Lamarck, Butler, Bergson and Bernard Shaw McDougall took great pains to present the hormic theory of psychology as against the mechanistic interpretaion of life and mind.

 

The hormic force determines experience and behavior.  We get conscious experience because of this drive. The conscious experience takes the form of perception and understanding.  Horme operates even in the unconscious behavior of lower animals. In the plants and animals we see it operate in the preservation of organic balance. In our own physical and mental life we find examples of horme below the conscious level. We circulate our blood, we breathe and we did, just our food, and all these are the expressions of the hormic energy.  It operates at all levels both in the individual and the racial sense.[22] But the horme expressed and presented by the Jaina philosophers could not be developed and analysed in terms of the modern psychology, because their analysis of Upayoga was surely an epistemological problem tempered with metaphysical speculation. They were aware of the fact that there is a purposive force which actuates and determines experience. This is clear from the distinction between jiana and darsana as two forms of upayoga.

 

Citta or cetana as a characteristic of the soul is important in Indian philosophy. In the Dravyasamgraha, jiva is described as possessing cetana from the noumenal point of view. Cetana is a sort of inclination which arises from upayoga. This inclination branches in two directions-jnana and darsana. Darsana may be said to be undifferentiated knowledge Jnana is cognition defined. The jiva has infinite jnana and darsana. But certain classes of Karman, like jnanavarantya and Darsandvarantya tend to obscure and confuse the essential nature of the jiva. From the phenomenal point of view, darsana and jnana tend to manifest themselves in eight kinds of jnana and four kinds of darsana.

 

The possession of Upayoga raises the question whether the Jiva possesses upayoga and is yet different from it, or whether it is identical with it. The Nyaya theory does not recognize the identity of quality and its possessor. Jainism assets that only from the phenomenal point of view they are separable. In Pancastikayasara we read "Only in common parlance do we distinguish darsana and jnana. But in reality there is no separation."[23] The soul is inseparabl from Upayoga. Horme is an essential characteristic of the living organisms. It is manifested in the fundamental property experienced in the incessant adjustments and adventures that make up the tissue of life and which may be called drive or felt tendency towards an end.[24] Animal life is not merely permeated by physical and chemical processes it is more than that. Even the simplest animal is autonomous.

 

The soul is simple and without parts. It is formless as the soul is immaterial it has no form. This quality has been mentioned in other systeins also. The Jaina thinker were against the Buddhist idea of the soul as a cluster of khandas.  Buddists do not refer to the permanent soul. It is a composite of mental states called khandas. In moder Western thought, Hume says, "When I enter most intimating into what I call myself, I always stumble upon some percetion or other of heat or cold, light, or shade, love or hatred pain or pleasure.  I never catch myself any time without perception, and never can observe anything but the perception,"[25] Hoffding stated that the ego has been looked out for in vain as something absolutely simple. The nature of the ego is manifested in the combination of sensation, ideas and feelings. But Herbart maintains that the soul is a simple being not only without parts but also without qualitativ multiplicity. Modern Psychology has emphasized substan-tiality, simplicity, persistence and consciousness as the attributes of the soul.  Descartes has said, "I am the thing that thinks, that is to say who doubts, who affirms....who loves, who hates and feels...," He designates this thing as substance.[26]

 

Hamilton advocated the four characteristics with the greatest explicitness. Other prominent names are those of Porter, Calkins, Angell and Aveling.[27]

 

From the phenomenal point of view, jiva is also described as possessing four pranas. They are sense (indriya), energy (bala), life (ayus) and respiration (ana). The Pancastikayasara gives the same description. The idea of prana is found in Indian and Western thought. In the Old Testament (Genesis.  Book I) we read, "The Lord God breathed into the nostril the breath of life and man became a living soul." In the primitive minds we find the conception that the wind gave men life. When it ceases to blow, men die. In the Navaho legend there is a description of the life force according to which we see the trace of the wind in the skin at the tips of fingers. Pranas refer to psychophysical factors of the organism. The jiva assumes the bodily powers when it takes new forms in each new birth. Whatever thing manifests in the four pranas lives and is jiva.[28] The four Pranas are manifest in ten forms. The Indriya expresses itself in five senses.  Bala may refer to the mind, the body and speech.  Ayus and Ana are one each. These pranas in all their details need not be present in all organisms, because there are organisms with less than five sense organs. But there must be the four main characteristics. The most perfectly developed souls have all the ten pranas and the lowest have only four. This has a great biological and psychological significance.  Comparative psychology points out that in the psychophysical development of the various animal species at the lower level, the chemical sense which is affected by chemical reaction is the only sense function; and it later becomes the separate sense of taste and smell Experimental investigations carried by Riley and Forell point out that the chemical sense is used by insects like moths even for mating.  Forel has given a topo-chemical theory for explaining the behavior of bees. As we go higher in the scale of life, the chemical sense plays little part. In birds, sight and smell are well developed. In mammals, we find a higher degree of qualitative discrimination of smell. As we go higher still, we get the variability of adaptation which may be called intelligence.

 

In the Brahmanas and the oldest Upanisads there is a description of the psyche as consisting of five pranas. They are regarded as factors of the physico-psychological life.  Occasionally, more than five pranas are mentioned. But still the idea of a permanent self had not shaped itself. In the third Adhyaya of the Brhadaranyakopanisad Yajnavalkya was asked to explain what happend to a person after the body has been dissolved, and the parts of the psyche has been remitted to the fire and wind. He avoids the discussion and suggests that Karma remains after death.[29] This was a step forward towards the formation of the permanent self.  Brhadaranyakopanisad also contains a discussion about the constituent parts of the soul. Eight instead of five have been suggested. Vijnana and retah are mentioned. This vijnanamayapurusa comes nearer to the conception of the soul, although personal immortality is not emphasized. In Jainism also, the idea of a permanent soul possessing pranas must have developed on the same lines.

 

From the phenomenal point of view, the soul is the Lord (prabhu), the doer (karta), enjoyer (bhokta) limited to his body (deahmatra), still incorporeal, and it is ordinarily found with Karma. Asa potter considers himself as a maker and enjoyer of the clay pot, so, from the practical point of view, the mundane soul is said to be the doer of things like constructing house and the enjoyer of sense objects.[30] As the soul produces impure thought-activities and as a consequence, the material Karmas, it also enjoy his thoughts with the help of the material Karmas. Thus, Jiva enjoys its thought created activity. However, from the noumenal point of view, Jiva is the doer of suddha bhavas or pure thought (karmas); and from the phenomenal point of view, it is the doer of pudgala karmas or Karmic matter.[31] The distinction between the formal cause (nimitta), and material cause upadana, has been introduced for the description of the soul. The Jainas say that the soul is the efficient cause of the material Karmas.  The Jiva possesses consciousness, and conciseness manifests itself in the form of various mental states.  These mental states are responsible for activities which produce material Karmas.  It is, therefore, asserted that Jiva is the agent: of thought-karmas, indirectly of the Karmic matter. The Pancastikayacara describes the atman as the agent of its own bhavas.  But it is not the agent of Dudgala karmas.[32]  Jainism emphasizes the activity of the Jiva as  against the Samkhya view of the passive udasina purusa. As a consequence of activity, the Jiva experiences happiness and misery. But Hemicandra says that it is only from the phenomenal point of view. From the nollmenal point of view, Jiva has consequences and it enjoys eternal bliss. In the Dravyasamgraha we read, "niccayanayado cedanabhavam khu adassa". He joys and sorrows that Jiva experiences are the fruits of dravya-karman Rut Buddhism believe[32] that the agent never enjoys the fruits of Karma.  James Ward giving the general characterization of the "varied contents of the general self, says that the self has first of all a) a unique interest and b) a certain in-wardness, further it is c) an individual that d) percists, e) is active, and finally it knows itself.[33]