Not only has Panditji provided new knowledge but
he has also x-rayed and given valuable comments and suggestions upon the
prevalent religious rituals and practices of the society of his times.
This clearly shows that besides self-realization and profound knowledge of
scriptures, he possessed a keen sense of understanding and analyzing the
intricacies of social behavior (Chapter seventh). As an example, the
following graphic description relating to the so-called religious
practices and rituals followed by the Jain society 230 years ago is truly
applicable even in the present era:
" Many Jivas follow religion (rituals) either
because of family tradition or by observing others or under the influence
of greed passion. Such persons in no way possess the religious viewpoint.
While they are worshiping, their mind gets engrossed in other thoughts,
their eyes are engaged in seeing others, chanting of sermons continues
through mouth. All this is not purposeful, because they do not know as to
who they are, whose adoration is being done and for what purpose, What is
the meaning of the words they are chanting, etc.
Sometimes they are found worshiping even the fallacious
and imaginary gods, etc. because of the want of discriminatory knowledge
between fallacious gods and true gods, etc."
For drawing attention of learned scholars and pious
readers, innumerable revolutionary statements are found at several places
in Moksha Marg Prakashak. A few of them are quoted hereunder:
(1) If one's belief becomes as per the true nature of
the substances then all his miseries come to an end.
(2) In Tattvarthsutra, while defining Influx
Tatva, Great and Small Vows also are included under Influx. How could
then these be worth adopting?
(3) But Adoration is a form of attachment and
attachment causes bondage, therefore, it is not the cause of liberation.
(4) One does not make effort for renouncing attachment-
aversion passions, which cause Influx and merely makes efforts for
avoiding related external activities or other instrumental causes. But by
their avoidance Influx cannot be avoided.
(5) No other substance defiles forcibly. When our own
thoughts and feelings get defiled then only it is an instrumental cause.
Moreover, one's thoughts get defiled even without an instrumental cause;
therefore, it is not a regulatory instrumental cause. Thus finding faults
in others, is a fallacy.
(6) And in not ascertaining the real nature of
Tattvas there is no fault of any Karma, it is your own fault.
But you want to remain an ostentatious person and lay your fault on
Karmas. So, for one who obeys Jinas commands, such malversation
is not possible.
(7) Behold the magnanimity of deliberation on
Tattvas. A person devoid of deliberation on Tattvas, may have
faith on Deva etc., may study many shastras, may practice vows, may
observe penances, etc., even then he is not entitled to evolve right
belief, and one who engrosses himself in deliberation on Tattvas is
privileged to evolve right belief even without these practices.
(8) Vyauahara-Naya describes the self and
nonself substances, their modifications and cause and effect relationship,
etc. by intermingling one with the other; misbelief is caused by having
such faith; therefore, one should abandon it. And Nishchay-Naya
describes the substances, etc. exactly as they are; it does not inter
mingle one with the other. So right belief is evolved by such faith.
Therefore, one should possess its faith.
(9) Therefore, so long as such state (passionless
disposition) is not evolved, one should indulge in virtuous activities but
his belief should be such that these activities too are causes of bondage
and worth giving up. If in belief these are taken to be the path of
liberation then he is assuredly a Misbeliever (Mithya Dristhi).
Pandit Todarmalji has given prime importance to the
practice of passionless conduct in the path of liberation. While
attempting to define and explain Right Belief, Right Knowledge and Right
Conduct, after analyzing the traits of these three jewels at length, he
concludes in the following words: "What to say more, in whatever way the
belief of uprooting passions emerges, the same is right belief; by
whatever means the knowledge of exterminating passions, etc. is evolved,
the same is right knowledge and by whatever means passions are destroyed,
the same is right conduct. Such alone should be believed to be the true
path of liberation"
The greatest contribution of Panditji is this that he
unfolded the spiritual knowledge of Tattvas available in
Sanskrit and Prakrit languages through the medium of the spoken
language of his times and also provided a new insight for interpretation
and analysis of spiritual knowledge. He did not view the spiritual
knowledge from traditional and scriptural angle only. For him
Tattvajnana is a lively process of meditation, which not only
contradicts the traditional ritualistic practices, but, hits hard at the
contemporary so-called religious prevalent practices. His thesis has been
that no spiritual thinking is original till it has been established on the
foundation of logic and self- realization. According to him religion is
not a mere tradition but a self-examined system and practice.
Though basically he is a spiritual thinker, yet in his
contemplation there lies a wonderful harmony of logic and
self-realization. He pays attention not only on the thought, but also
examines the ability or disability of its propagator and follower on the
basis of logic. He maintains that certain essential qualities are
necessary for under-standing and interpretation of Tattvajnana.
According to him, the path of liberation is nothing separate but it is
knowledge of the self-soul only, which he calls passionless-knowledge.
Whatever practices and dispositions provide impediments in the process of
self-realization, all these are false. He has divided these false traits
into two - those which are newly evolved or accepted and those which are
found from beginningless times. By newly accepted false belief he means
those conjectures and beliefs which we accept in the company of the
so-called preceptors who are devoid of spiritual knowledge and which we
accept to be true; be these of other sects or of our own sect. Under
these he has logically analyzed and x-rayed all those Jain practices and
beliefs which were accepted as part and parcel of Jain Tattvajnana
from the sixth century up to the eighteenth century and which had no
relation, whatsoever, with real spiritual knowledge. He has firmly and
logically contradicted these so-called visual Jain practices and rituals
full of blemishes propagated by Bhattarakas (so-called preceptors).
His style is unique being composed of questions/answers
and befitting examples. One of the chief characteristics of his style is
that the question and its answer both are his only. In the answer of the
earlier question germinates the latter question. In this way, the earlier
question ends only when the subject matter reaches its logical end. The
other original and sparkling characteristic of his prose style is that,
he avoids giving sermons to the reader and places before him such a
graphic description and analysis of the situation that the reader of his
own has to reach at the desired conclusion. The same style and approach
which a doctor adopts in the treatment of a disease, is visible in the
style of Panditji also.