Jainworld
Jain World
Sub-Categories of Passions - Jain View of Life
INTRODUCTION
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 OR GODS
 

GENERAL INDEX


Chapter-3 : THE JAINA THEORY OF THE SOUL

 

          The existence of the soul is a presupposition in the Jaina philosophy. Proofs are not necessary. If there are any existence of the soul. �Oh Gautama, the soul is pratyakasa� said Mahavira,� for that in which your knowledge consists is itself soul�. What is pratyaksa need not be prove like the pleasure and pain of the body. It is prartyaksa owig to the ahampratyaksa, the realization of the I, which is associated with the functions pertaining t all the three tenses. William James and James word present self- consciousness in this form. Ward talks of the internal perception� or self � consciousness. The last order of knowledge of the duality of subject ad object is an indispensable condition of all acute experience. It is the subject of experience that we call the pure ego or self.7 William James says, �for this central part of the self is felt. It is something by which we also have direct sensible consciousness in which it is present, as in the whole life-time of such moments.8 thus , one who ignores the self-accidence of the soul is like one who says that sound is inaudible and the moon is devoid of the moon. The existence of the soul can be inferred from the behavior of others. Similarly, the soul exists because �it is my word, O Gautama.� 9

          The jiva is described from the nominee and phenomenal points of view. From the oumenal point of view, the soul is described in the pure form. The phenomenal describes the empirical qualities of the soul.   From the pure point of view, it is not associated with body or any physical or mental qualities. Mahavira points out the third Ganadhara that the soul is different from the body it sees; just as Ddevadatta recollect san object perceived through the five widows of the palace, which is different from the palace and the five windows, so also a person recolecting an object perceive through the if senses of the body is different from the sense as the body 10

          The  Buddhist impermanence of the soul is also refuted. Buddhistas had said that there was no self except the khandas kundakundacaraya points out that from the noumea point of view the soul and the body are not one, also though in worldly practice the soul having a beautiful body is called beauriful ad fair like the beautiful body of the living Arhati. 11 In the Chanadogyopanisad, in the dialogue between yajanavakaya and Janaka, the idea of the self is progressively brought out by showing that it is not a physical entity nor a dream �state.

From the nominal pint of view, the soul pure and perfect. It is pure consciousness. From the real point of view, the soul is unbound, untouched and not other than itself. The soul is one and not composite. In the Sthananga we get a description of the soul as one(ege atta). The commentator describes it as ekavidhah a tmanaah. 12 Samasara kundakaundacaraya describes the absolute oneness of the soul �On the strength of my self- realisation�. 13 This does not contradict the plurality of souls in Jainism. It only emphasizes the essential identity of souls. Jivas in al their individual characteristics are essentially the same. If the souls were one, then, �O Gautama, there would not be sukha duhkha, bhandha mosksa, etc� Individual souls are different like the kumbhas.14

          The nature of jiva has been well described by Nemicandra in his Dravyasamgradha. He describes the foul both from the nominee and phenomenal points of view. He says that jiva  is characterised by upayoga, is formless and is an agent. It has the same extent as its body. It is the enjoyer of the fruits of Karma. It exists in samasara. It is siddha and has a characteristic of upward motion. 15  We get a similar description in  the pancastikayasara of kundakundacaraya. Jiva is formless. It characterised by upayoga. It is attached to karama. It is the Lord, the agent and the ejoyer of the fruits of karama. It pervades bodies large or small. It has a tendency to go upward to the end of loka being freed from the impurities of kiarama.16  The  Tattavarthasutra describes the nature of the soul as possess ing upayoga as its essential characteristic:

Eight Characteristics:

Every  Jiva possesses an infinite number of qualities, Flasebappi, in his Doctrine of karama in jaina philolophy  mentions eight important characteristics:

1. The faculty of omniscience (kevala- jnana)

2. The faculty of absolute  undifferentiated cognition (kevala-darsana)

3. Superiority over joy and grief.

4. Possession of belief I complete religious truth (samayakatva), and
irreproachable moral conduct (caritra)

5.  Possession of eternal life (aksayashiti)

6.  Complete formlessess (amurtava)

7.  Unrestricted energy (viryatva)

8.  Complete equality in rank with other Jivas.