A BRIEF SUMMARY OF CONTENTS
The title of the book is Moksha Marg Prakashak,
therefore, a discussion and interpretation of the path of liberation is
expected to be found in the contents. But liberation is relative with
Therefore, in the beginning the mundane state of
bondage and its causes have been considered. This is mainly the subject
matter of the first seven chapters. In the Eighth Chapter a detailed and
comprehensive discussion is found about the technique of understanding the
essence of the real message of Jain literature. The Ninth Chapter which
has remained incomplete, marks the beginning of a detailed consideration
of the liberation path.
The First Chapter is the foundation chapter in
which first of all in two verses obeisance is offered to the passionless
science of knowledge by following which the Panchparmeshthis have
become adorable. Thereafter, after adoration of Panchparmeshthis,
their traits, the objective of adoration, authenticity of the book, and
purpose of writing it have been logically and judiciously discussed. This
follows characteristics of Shastras worth reading and listening to,
traits of discourses and listeners. In the end, the purposefulness of the
name of the book and the object of writing it has, been established.
The Second Chapter contains description of the
mundane existence. Sufficient thought is given to the bonded state of the
soul, the existence of the bonded state from beginning less times,
separate identity of Karmas from the soul and division of Karmas
into obscuring (Ghati) and non- obscuring (Aghati),
substantive and psychic, etc. Thereafter, light is thrown on new bondage
and its causes. At the end, the partially evolved dependent state of
knowledge and the state of the soul in bonded state have been considered
In the Third Chapter, mundane miseries, basic
causes of miseries i.e. perverse faith- knowledge- conduct, dispositions
of the soul under the influence of passions and ways and means of freeing
oneself from the same are described. Thereafter, the migratory states of
the soul in the form of one- sensed being, etc, and the miseries suffered
in these states along with the means of ending such miseries are
discussed. This chapter ends with a description of the Siddha State
and it has been logically established that all miseries come to an end in
this state and endless total bliss is produced which should be the sole
objective of every soul.
The subject matter of the Fourth Chapter is the
involvement of the soul from beginningless times in false belief -
knowledge and conduct. It also contains a graphic discussion of the need
and logic for discriminating between purposeful and purposeless Tattvas.
Light is also thrown in detail on the states and dispositions of the soul
under influence of delusion and passions.
In the Fifth Chapter the newly developed and
accepted false belief has been described at length. Under it all the
important non-Jain schools of faith have been x-rayed.
The antiquity and truthfulness of Jaina faith has been
logically established on the basis of quotations contained in the oldest
shastras and scriptures of other faiths. Panditji considers the
Swetamber faction of Jain faith also under other faiths and the
falsehood of liberation in the state of womanhood, liberation in the low
caste state, liberation in clothal state, etc. has been in logically
exposed and refuted.
In the Sixth Chapter also, under the title of
newly accepted false belief, the futility of worshiping false deity -
preceptor and shastras has been logically established and Jivas
are forbidden to worship the same. It also includes an analytical
discussion of the futility of adoring Kshetrapal, Padmavati,
Sun, Moon, Fire, Beasts, etc.
The subtle form of false belief (delusion) has been
described in the Seventh Chapter. Such false belief is found both
in the persons who are Jain by mere name and also in Jains who claim that
they follow the commandments of Jain Shastras. This is so because
they do not understand the inner message contained in Jain scriptures.
Panditji clarifies that although they do not keep company with non
Jain preceptors, etc., yet they further foster their already existing
wrong belief either due to their own ignorance and mistakes or due to the
company of ignorant naked saints and preceptors or by study of scriptures
written by them.
Pandit Todarmalji has classified such misbelievers into
the following four categories:
(1) Misbelievers having false conception about Real
(2) Misbelievers having false conception about
Conventional view-point. (Vyavaharabhasi)
(3) Misbelievers having false conception about both
Real and Conventational viewpoints (Ubhayabhasi)
(4) Misbelievers' facing to Right belief (Samyaktva-ke-
sanmukh Mithya drishties)
In the discussion of the traits of Nishchayabhasis,
their tendencies have been analyzed at length and Jivas are
forbidden to become reckless by treating the soul to be pure without
understanding the reality about the purity of the self-soul.
While describing the misconceptions of
vyavaharabhasi misbelievers, Panditji has strongly supported the
viewpoint that in adopting religious practices and rituals one should not
follow the same because it is traditional or because such is the
commandment of shastras. One should examine its essence and
purposefulness judiciously before adopting it. Even the adoration of true
- deity-preceptor and shastra blindly with passion worldly intentions has
been forbidden. A detailed analysis about the misconceptions about the
seven Tattvas harbored by the Vyavaharabhasi misbelievers is
worth paying attention. The injudicious practices adopted by such persons
for attainment of Right Knowledge and Right Conduct have also been
A clear cut and in depth analysis of Vyavahar
and Nishchay points of views has been attempted while critically
examining the misconceptions and practices of misbelievers having false
conceptions about both Nishchay and Vyavhar Nayas.
In the description of misbelievers facing Right Belief,
the steps involved in understanding the true nature of tattvas for
attainment of Right Belief are explained at length and the traits and
sequential processes of five labhdis which invariably precede the
attainment of Right Belief have been thoroughly discussed.
At the end of this chapter it has been emphatically
stressed that the aforesaid various types of blemishes and misconceptions
are described here not for searching the same in others and censuring them
but for giving up such blemishes and misunderstandings if found existing
in one's own self.
The Eighth Chapter considers the nature of
sermons. The whole Jain literature is divided into four categories from
the viewpoint of subject matter. These are Mythonomy (Prathamanuyoga),
Aetiology (Karnanuyoga), Philosophy (Dravyanuyoga) and
Ethology (Charnanuyoga). Though the style and subject matter of
each Anuyoga is different from others, yet the objective of all the
four Anuyogas is one and the same and it is to inspire Jivas
to adopt religion in life. The essence of Jain literature cannot be
grasped properly without the knowledge of the style of their descriptions.
The subject matter of each and its style of interpretation has been
described in detail. Each Anuyoga has its purpose, without understanding
which many meaningless misgivings crop up. All these have been very well
clarified with suitable examples and comparisons. At the end, great stress
is laid on the study of Jain literature with particular emphasis on the
study of shastras discussing the true nature of the soul and the
seven Tattvas, etc., because therein lies the main purpose of the
In the Ninth Chapter starts the discussion of
the nature of the path of liberation. After judiciously proving the
hollowness of worldly pleasures and pondering over the existence of real
bliss in the state of liberation, it has been well established that
attainment of liberation is possible only through one's own real efforts.
One should, therefore, himself make right efforts in this direction
without expecting any help from others. Then starts a detailed discussion
of the first step in the path of liberation, viz. Right Belief and its
various definitions available in the four Anuyogas. The
misconceptions about the seeming difference in the approach of the four
Anuyogas in defining Right Belief have been clearly removed with the help
of suitable examples and a synthesis between the same has been
established. The nature of the seven Tattvas whose correct
knowledge is essential in the attainment of Right Belief has been
discussed at length. The concluding lines of this chapter contain an
attempt to lay stress on the eight qualities of Right Belief and avoidance
of the twenty-five blemishes but this attempt has remained incomplete.
It is a pity that this great personality who was never
attracted towards amassing physical comforts and worldly achievements,
became a prey of communal hatred and consequently had to sacrifice his
It is extremely difficult and unbecoming for
illustrious persons to tread the trodden path, but fewer are such
personalities who find their own path and yet do not go astray.
Acharyakalpa Pandit Todarmalji was one such person who did not adopt
the trodden path and yet did not go astray.
The present work Moksha Marg Prakashak is to be read
and digested from beginning to end. Its study and contemplation on issues
raised herein are profoundly beneficial for all the seekers of
self-realization. Panditji himself has expressed this earnest desire at
the end of each chapter. Keeping in mind those persons who are wasting
this precious opportunity of human existence in amassing and enjoying
objects of sensual pleasures only and not availing of the opportunity of
evolving knowledge of the self-soul Panditji writes:
"As for example- if a miraculous and precious diamond
is offered to an extremely pauper person for looking at it but he refuses
even to look at it and if a cup of nectar is offered to a leper for
drinking but he refuses to drink it, similarly, if a mundane miserable
jiva gets an opportunity to listen to an easy discourse on path of
liberation (and of studying such simple book written in the spoken
language), but he refuses to pay attention to it, then it is not possible
for us to describe the glory of his misfortune. When we ponder over his
future, a compassionate feeling only arises in us."
There can be no better end to my thoughts beyond the
above inspiring words of Pandit Todarmalji.
J. L. Jain