It is only an adventitious quality of the soul. In the state of ‘deliverance’, the soul is devoid of all qualities including consciousness. Even the materialist Carvaka view says that consciousness is the result o’- a combination of some circumstances and material substances. Consciousness, for them, is an epiphenomenon, just a product of nature produced like the intoxicating property of the drug when the material elements are transferred into the physical body. It is said to arise in the same way as the red colour is produced by the combination of the betel-leaf, nut and lime, or is the result of mixing white and yeIlow. But Nyaya Vaisesikas do not deny the existence of the soul. Modern epiphenomenalism maintains that consciousness is a by-product of the physical and chemical changes going on in the body. It is like the residue of a chemical action. It is like the whistle of a passing train.
During his discussion with the Third Ganadhara, Lord Mahavira answers the objections of the latter. He says that the presumption of Vayubhuti seems to be that consciousness is produced from the collection (samudaya) of bhutas like earth and water. It is like the intoxication found in the combination of the ghataki flowers and jaggery, although it is not traceable in the components separately. If the combination (samudaya) is destroyed, the consciousness is destroyed. But, Mahavira points out that consciousness can never exist in the collection if it is absent in the individual constituents as oil cannot come out of particles of sand. But cetana is the intrinsic quality of the soul residing in a group of bhutas, (elements). If it were only the quality of all the elements taken together, it might also exist in a dead body. Sometimes, consciousness arises without the working of the sense organs; and sometimes, in spite of their working, the object is not apprehended. In the Samayasdra it is said that the mere presence of the stimuli on the external environment, and even their coming into contact with the sense-organs, may not be effective to produce a psychic state like the consciousness. The presence of a psychic element, like selective attention, determines the nature of the state. Consciousness, then, has none of the characteristics that belong to any or all of the collection of knowable objects. The Jainas do not accept the transcendental consciousness, with no distinction between the ego and non-ego, of the idealists. According to Sari-Kara, intelligence and self are identical. However, the Jainas accept with the idealists that consciousness is unique and is not a product of a concourse of conditions. It is eternal. The Jaina view comes nearer to the view of consciousness presented by Ramanuja. The atman is eternal, and its natural quality of consciousness is also eternal. It is cidrupa and also caitanya gunaka. The self is filled with consciousness and has also consciousness for its quality. Ramanuja tries to distinguish between the Nyaya Vaisesika view and the Samkara view. Consciousness is not a non-eternal quality of the self, for, in that ease the self hood would be unconscious. He also wants to avoid the identity of the self and consciousness. And the Jainas also say that the self has consciousness as its essence. Since the time of Leibnitz, consciousness is admitted to be an accident of the mental representation and not its necessary, essential attribute. His contention that the inner world is richer and more concealed was well known to writers of the Upanisads. However, that consciousness as an aspect of the mental life is a profound truth, is slowly to be realized.
The analysis of the states of consciousness has been an important problem for philosophers as well as the psychologists. Consciousness has three aspects-the cognitive, the affective and the conative. They are modes of consciousness. In perceiving, believing or otherwise apprehending that such and such a thing exists and has characteristics, one’s attitude is cognitive. In the affective attitude one is either pleased or displeased about it. But one is also active about it; tries to know more about it; tries to alter it in some respect. This attitude is conative. But Stout says that though these three modes of consciousness are abstractly and analytically distinct phases in a concrete psychosis, they are not separable. They do not occur in isolation from each other. Mind is an organic unity and its activities have the closest degree of organic interaction. However, in every psychosis one of the aspects may be predominant. In the pleasure of pursuit, feeling presupposes conation. Sometimes, feeling is dependent on certain conative attitudes involved ill. the perceptual process, Similar reciprocity is found in conation and cognition.
Indian thinkers were aware of the distinction of states in consciousness. The Jainas recognize three forms of consciousness. They make a distinction between consciousness as knowing, as feeling and as ex periencing the fruits of karma (karma phala cetana), and willing. Conation and feeling are closely allied. As a rule we have first feeling, next conation and then knowledge. McDougall has emphasized that feeling is the core of all instinctive activity. in fact, in all experience there is a core of feeling, while the cognitive and conative aspects are varying factors. In the Aitareya Upanisad there is mention of different modes of experience. Sensation, perception and ideation are different modes of intellection. It recognizes feeling and volition as the other two forms of experience. The seers of Upanisads give a classification of seven mental functions. At the basis is intellection. The Chandogyoparrisad emphasizes the primacy of the will. The Buddhists also recognized such a distinction. We have perception and conception, feeling and affection, and conation or will. In the Buddhist theory, will is the most dominant aspect of conscious experience, the basal element of human life. Radhakrishnan in his Indian Philosophy suggests that vijnana, vedana and samskara roughly correspond to knowledge, feeling and will. Chillers in his dictionary brings the concept of conation under samskara. Mrs. Rhys Davids believes that, although there is no clear distinction between conation in the psychological sense and will in the ethical sense, still in the Pithakas there is consistent discrimination between psychological importance and ethical implication.s Professor Stout has given up old tripartite classification of mental states and reverts to the ancient bipartite analysis of mind bringing the affective and conative elements together under the name of interest. Radhakrishnan says that, if we discard the separation of cognition and make it the theoretical aspect of conation, we get to the Buddhist emphasis on conation as the central fact of mental life.
In the Nyayavaisesika theory also there is a description of the manifestation of the three aspects of self as knowledge, desire and volition. We have to know a thing before we feel the want of it. In order to satisfy the want, we act. Thus, as Hiriyanna says, feeling mediates between cognition and conation. Thus, the modes of consciousness have been the problem of philosophers and psychologists. There is a general agreement regarding the division of consciousness into three modes, although different philosophers have emphasized different aspects in the concrete psychosis. Buddhists have emphasized conation. In the Upanisads all the aspects have received their due prominence. The primacy of the intellect is emphasized in the Chartdogya and Maitreya Upanisads. In the Chandogya, again, we get a description of the primacy of the will. But this has reference to the cosmic will rather than to its psychological aspect. The Jainas emphasize the close relation between conation and feeling. The Nyaya theory describes the function of feeling as a mediating factor between cognition and conation.
The term self-consciousness is very ambiguous. It may me-u, consciousness of the self as an object given in introspection. In this sense. the self, the empirical ego, becomes both an aspect of experience and also an object of experience. Self-consciousness may mean transcendental and. pure self-consciousness. It is not an object of knowledge. It is the ultimate subject presupposed in acts of knowledge. Again, consciousness may mean the ultimate eternal consciousness, which is a metaphysical concept. It is also used in the empirical sense as consciousness which is changing.4+) Some of the earlier philosophers have not made a clear distinction between the metaphysical and the psychological sense of consciousness. In the Upanisads, atrnan is described as the basis and the ultimate presupposition in all knowledge. It is the absolute knower: and bow can the knower itself be known?’-’ It cannot be comprehended by intellect. It is the seer and the l.n.ower. Yet, the atman can be known by higher intuition. It is knowable as the pratyagatmanam, apprehended by adhyatma yoga The Buddhists recognize the distinction between subject and object within the consciousness. They do not believe in the transcendental self. Their view of consciousness is like the stream of consciousness of William James. Yogacras believe that self is a series of cognition’s or ideas. There is no self apart from cognition’s. They reveal neither the self nor the non-self. Some Nyaya philosophers, especially the neo-Naiyayikas, believed that self is an object of internal perception, manasa pratyaksa. The Vais’esikas also maintain that, although the self is not an object of perception but of inference, it can be apprehended by Yogic intuition. The Sarnkhya philosophers maintain that consciousness is the essence of self: It is self-luminous. Self is inferred through its reflection in buddhi. But Ptanjali accepts the supernormal intuition of the self through the power of Loncemtration. The self can know itself through its reflection in its pure sattva and also when :nixed with rajas and tannins by supernormal, intuition (pratibha jitana). So, the pure self can know the empirical self, out the empirical self cannot know the pure self. There is the contradiction involved in the self being both subject and object and the reflection theory does not much improve the situation. Vacaspati tries to avoid the contradiction by saying that transcendental self is the subject, and the empirical self the object, of self-apprehension.
According to Prabhakara, self is necessarily known in every act of cognition. Cognition is self-luminous. It not only manifests itself, but also supports the atman, much as the flame and the wick. Neither the self nor the object is self-luminous. There can be consciousness of an object without the consciousness of the self. In every act of cognition there is a direct and immediate apprehension of the self. But the self can never be known as object of knowledge. It is only to be known as a subject. It is revealed by triputa samvit.
The Jainas hold with Prabhakara that cognition is always apprehended by the self: Cognition reveals itself, the self and its object. Every act of cognition cognizes itself, the cognizing subject and the cognized object. But the Jaina denies that consciousness alone is self-luminous. He regards self as non-luminous. Self is the subject of internal perception. When I feel that I am happy I have a distinct and immediate apprehension of the self’ as an object of internal perception, just as pleasure can be perceived though it is without form. “Oh Gautama”, said Nlahaivira, “the self is prcrtyakser even to you. The soul is cognizable even to you.” Again, unlike the view of Prabhakara, the Jainas hold that it is the object of perception and, it is manifested by external and internal perception. To the question Tow can the subject be an object of perception?’, the Jaina replies that whatever is experienced is an object of perception.
William James made a distinction between the empirical self, the me, and the transcendental self; the I. The self is partly the known and partly the knower, partly object and partly subject. The empirical ego is the .self as known, the pure ego is the knower. “It is that which at any moment is conscious”. Whereas the me is only one of the things which it is conscious of. But this thinker is not a passing state. It is something deeper and less mutable. 45 Prof. Ward holds that the pure self is always immanent in experience, in the sense that experience without the expedient will be unintelligible. It is also transcendental,. in the sense that it can never be the object of our experience. The Jainas were aware that consciousness of self is not possible by ordinary cognition. Therefore, they said, it is due to internal perception.
Self-consciousness does not belong to the realm of pure consciousness which is foundational and without limitation. That is the cetana which is the essential quality of the soul. But when we descend to the practical level, the realm of vyavahara, we find the distinction between subject and object in consciousness. The question whether the self is perceived by direct experience like the internal perception of the Jainas, or by the immediate intuition, ( pratibha jiuiua) of the Vedantins, is raised as a consequence of this distinction. In all this, the question is answered from the empirical point of view. On this basis, we may say that there are two aspects of consciousness: (a) pure and transcendental consciousness, and (b) empirical consciousness. Atman pure consciousness. Jim is consciousness limited by the organism. Atman is the subject of consciousness. It is also the object of internal perception, but only in the sense that it is immanent in consciousness though not clearly cognized as
object. Jim is both the subject and the object of consciousness, because it is the cognizer as well as the cognized.
Now we come to the idea of the unconscious. The idea of the unconscious has become very important in modern psychology and has been popularized by the Freudians. In fact, it has developed in its two aspects-the metaphysical and the psychological. Plato, in his Charmides, states in the wake of a Socratic dictum, that knowledge of the self consists in what one knows and what one does not know. Psychologically, the idea of the unconscious has developed along with that of the conscious. Montague speaks of desires and thoughts as being imperceptible. Leibnitz speaks of unconscious mental states. Kant mentioned the ‘dark’ percepts of which we are not aware. Hamilton analysed the unconscious into three degrees of latency. In recent times, psycho-analysis has given a systematic theory of the unconscious. Freud arrived at the theory of the unconscious by his study of hysterical patients and analysis of dreams. Mental life for him has two parts, the conscious, which is the organ of perception, and the unconscious. The unconscious is ordinarily inaccessible. It is that which is not conscious. It is the depth which contains all the dynamically repressed wishes, mainly sexual in nature. Freud analyses the causation of neurosis and interprets dreams with the help of the unconscious. Even normal forgetting is explained on these lines. Harman’s unconscious is a metaphysical principle. It is the absolute principle, the force which is operative in the inorganic, the organic and the mental alike. It is the unity of idea and will. It exists independently of space, time and existence.
The Jaina thinkers were aware of the unconscious, although a clear scientific formulation was not possible for them in those times owing to lack of experimental investigations. Nandisutra gives a picture of the unconscious in the mallaka drstanta, (example of the earthen pot). A man takes an earthen pot from the potter and pours a drop of water into it. The water is absorbed. Then he goes on pouring drop after drop continuously. After some time, when many drops have been absorbed, a stage will come when the water begins to be visible. This example gives a clear picture of the vast depth of the unconscious which absorbs all our wishes and ideas, although the example was meant to explain the process of avagraha. Buddhist psychology recognizes the unconscious life. It is called vidhimutta, while vidhicitta is the waking consciousness. The two are divided by a threshold of consciousness, manodvara. Similarly, bhavanga subjectively viewed is subconscious existence, though objectively it is sometimes taken to mean nirvana. Mrs. Rhys Davids says that the consciousness is only an intermittent series of psychic throbs associated with a living organism beating out their coming-to-know through one brief span of life. Similarly, the idea of the unconscious is implicit in the conception of the four states of consciousness in the various schools of Indian thought. In the Mancfukyopattisad we get a description of waking, dreaming, dreamless sleep, and the highest stage, turlya. In the dreaming and dreamless states of sleep there is the implicit awareness of the self. All the orthodox systems of Indian thought accept this distinction of the levels of consciousness. This implies the presence of the unconscious state of which we are not at the moment aware.
In modern psychology, the idea of the unconscious underwent modifications at the hands of Jung. Jung used the word unconscious in a wider sense. He made a distinction between the personal unconscious and the collective unconscious. The personal unconscious contains repressed wishes, forgotten memories and all that is learned unconsciously. Deeper than the personal unconscious is the collective or racial unconscious, the common groundwork of humanity out of which each individual develops his personal and unconscious life. The collective unconscious is inherited in the structure of the organism including the brain structure which predisposes the individual to think and act as the human race has thought and acted through countless generations. The collective unconscious includes the instincts and also the archetypes. Archetypes are the primordial ways of thinking submerged in the waking life. An archetype becomes an idea when it is made conscious. The new discoveries in science and the creative work of scientists arise out of this treasure-house of primordial images. ‘J There is nothing to prevent us from thinking that certain archetypes exist even in animals. They are grounded in the peculiarities of the living organism itself; therefore, they are direct expressions of life whose nature cannot be further explained.
The doctrine of karma presented by Indian thinkers and systematically worked out by the Jainas may be aptly compared to the collective or racial unconscious of Jung, more specially of the archetypes of the collective unconscious, although the karma theory has a metaphysical flavour. The Jainas have given a more elaborate and scientific theory of kartria. The law of karma is the ultimate determinant of various courses of life bath physical and mental. In fact, our physical stature and our birth in particular social surroundings is the result of the karma we have accumulated. The kannic matter goes on accumulating with the deeds we do. The innate faculty of the soul is obscured by the particles of karma as the luminous light of the sun is obscured by the veil of clouds or by fog. This obscuration is beginningless although it has an end. The karma that binds us is both physical and psychical in nature. The physical karma is material in nature, while the psychical karma comprises those psychic effects and states which are produced in the soul owing to the influx of the physical karma. Karmic atoms are classified into eight types. Ji7anavarniya karma obscures true cognitive faculties. Darsana rvarwiya karma obscures the intuitive faculty. Monaniya karma deludes us. Similarly, specific types of karma determine our age, our physique, the states, and even the power and activity of life. The force of karma works implicitly and makes us what we are in both body and mind. Thus, it was suggested, the operation of karma can be compared to the operation of the collective or racial unconscious. The collective unconscious stands for the objective psyche. In his more recent essays, Jung writes: “The contents of archetypal character are manifestations of a process in the collective unconscious. Hence, they do not refer to anything that is or has been conscious, but to something essentially unconscious”. Elsewhere, Jung writes that the personal layer ends at the earliest memories of infancy, but the collective layer comprises the pre-infantile period that is the residue of ancestral life. It contains the archetypes of very ancient images. He says that it is possible to find the karmic factor in the archetypes of the unconscious. “The karma aspect is essential to the deeper understanding of the nature of an archetype”. It is sometimes suggested that the comparison between the operation of karma and that of the collective unconscious is inadequate. There is no question of common inheritance except in the physical make up. Each individual has his peculiar karma prakrti, which cannot be derived from common inheritance. It may, however, be pointed out that the archetypes do refer to the common heritage that each individual shares with his community.
However, Jung developed the concept of the collective unconscious on the psychological plane with reference to the psycho-analytical study of the interpretation of dreams and fantasy. From this side, the archteypes are fundamental patterns of symbol formation. Had he developed the archetypes of the collective unconscious, he would have reached the doctrine of karma, the store-house of the physical and psychical effects of the past. He Would have realized that the force of the unconscious is the force of karma which determines the future course of life.
The metaphysical state of the unconscious has been an equally important problem for the philosophers. In the development of Indian thought three distinct views can be stated: (i) there is no entity such as consciousness. The unconscious alone exists. This is the view presented by the materialists. This view is associated with the Carvaka view. (ii) Consciousness alone exists. There is nothing like the unconscious. This view is expressed by the monistic idealists of the Vedanta. The Vedantist believes that there is nothing but consciousness, or the cit, which wrongly superimposes unconsciousness upon itself by making an object of itself The unconscious is created by the process of self-objectification. The appearance of the pure consciousness is due to its reflection in its limiting adjuncts. The pure cit wrongly identifies itself with the varying forms of the limiting adjuncts, as the moon in the water appears shaking because of the water shaking.
Similarly, the all-pervading cit may be limited by manas, buddhi and ahamkara, as the akasa which, though unbounded, is spoken of as bound according as it takes the form of a jug or a cloud. The unconscious is only the self-limitation of the limitless. Again, some Vedantists maintain that the unconscious is due to the limitation of consciousness through the nescience of avidya, and discriminative knowledge removes this veil of the unconscious, as the son of Kunti was known as the son of Radha and was believed to belong to a low caste because he was brought up in such a family.s However, the Vedantin accepts that from the practical point of view, things exist outside our consciousness and there exists a realm of unconscious in our midst. But it is due to the fact that our consciousness has not yet attained its highest stage of possibility. But when the range of consciousness is so widened as to include the realm of the subconscious and the unconscious, then it becomes identical with the universal consciousness in which there is nothing except itself. Thus the unconscious is only the receding and vanishing point of consciousness which alone exists as a permanent reality. This is the picture of the monists.
The duelists maintain that consciousness and the unconscious exist side by side and independently. This is the view of the Sarhkhya and the Yoga philosophy. Purusa is conscious and prakrti is unconscious. They meet to create experience. The purusa is reflected in the buddhi which is unconscious, just as a face is reflected in a mirror. Vijnanabhiksu maintains that the reflection is mutual, because the buddhi is reflected back in the purusa. The unconscious buddhi seems to be conscious owing to its proximity to the conscious purusa. But the Jaina philosophers have shove some of the defects of this theory. Acarya Hemacandra has said of the Sarnkhya Yoga doctrine that in it consciousness does not know objects, the buddhi is unconscious and what else would be more self contradictory than this ? Vidyanandi says that, the purusa being of the nature of non knowledge, how could Kapila be the instructor of truth even like one in deep sleep? The prakrti is also unconscious and like a jar it cannot fulfill the function of instruction. The Jaina admits with the Vedantin the possibility of pure consciousness at least in the final state of emancipation. because consciousness is the very essence of the soul. Even in the stage of bondage there is not a single moment in which the self ceases to be conscious. Bondage is the limitation of consciousness by means of the veil of karma and what comes through the channel of the senses. Karma is the unconscious principle which veils right knowledge and right intuition. Ignorance and delusion are not, then, innate but are produced through the influx of karma. The senses are rather handicaps than instruments of knowledge. In omniscience, the self and its consciousness are released from its barriers and the self attains omniscience. However, the Jainas do not believe that the limitation to consciousness is illusory. It is a fact in the empirical world.
In Western thought, Hartmann gave importance to the unconscious. He said that the human mind is determined by the ‘unconscious in love’, ‘unconscious in feeling’ and the ‘unconscious in character and morality’. For him, the unconscious is the absolute principle active in all things, the force which is operative in the inorganic, organic and mental alike yet not revealed in consciousness. It is the unity of unconscious representations and will, the idea and the will. The unconscious exists independently of space, time and individual existence, timeless before the being of the world. For us, it is the unconscious in itself; it is the superconscious.
Note on Pasyatta
The ancient Jaina literature describes upayoga and along with it, also mentions pasyatta. Prajnapanasutra recognizes a peculiar mental force called pasatraya, which is rendered as pasattya in Sanskrit. There is a description which states that both upayoga and pcrsarraya can be sakara and anakara. It means that jrancl and darsana belong to both pasyatta and upayoga. Pasyatta originally corresponded to drs and now connotes prolonged vision’ with reference to determinate knowledge; and clear vision with reference to intuition.
Distinguishing between upayoga and pasyatta, the commentator Malayagiri says that sakara upayoga consists of five classes of knowledge mati, sruta, avadhi, manah-paryaya and kevala jnana, and also three types of wrong cognition: kumati, kusracta and avadhi-ajnancr; while sakara pasyatta consists of six classes because mati-jnana and mati-ajnana, are not included in them. Similarly, anakara Upayoga is darsana. It has four types: caksudarsana (visual), acaks. edarsarta (intuition which is due to the mind and other sense organs except the eyes), avadhi darsana and kevaladarsana. Anakara pas ether, on the other hand, consists only of three classes, because crackups darsana, which is devoid of clear vision, cannot possess pasyattjj. Pas, atta thus means prolonged vision or clear vision. However, the clear meaning is not stated, although their sub-divisions are mentioned. The distinction between upcryoger and pasta and their sub-divisions cannot be dismissed as mere fancy of the ancient philosophers. We have analysed upayoga as horme, the psychic force in life. Similarly, it would be possible to say that the ancient Jaina philosophers were aware of the psychic force which holds our experience and which later becomes, the basis for new experience. Mneme is the first general property of the mind. It is the power of the mind by which the past is retained. Ross says that it is the general truth of living organisms that all life processes leave behind the modification of structure, both in the individual and the racial sense. In our mental structure are conserved the after-effects of all our individual experiences and probably many of the experiences of our ancestors also. The same idea is incorporated in the theory of Anamnesis in Plato’s Dialogues Meno. Knowledge is attained by the recollection in one’s life of realities and truths seen and known by the soul before its incarnation, But Mneme is not to be identified with memory, although memory is possible through the anemic force, which is wider than memory. Memory is mneme raising to the level of awareness. ‘When I recognize my friend in the street I do not say that I remember his face; but again my recognition is possible in virtue of past experience in which my friend has figured, and it is therefore a manifestation of mneme’. It is possible that lower animals have the power of rename. In the lower animals also it operates both in the individual and the racial sense. Birds build their nests after the racial pattern and they cross the sea at particular places.
From the analysis of mneme given above, it appears that similar ideas, though in a more simple manner, must have influenced the Jaina philosophers to point out the presence of pasyatta as distinct from upayoga, which is the life force for conscious experience. In the divisions of pas’ yatta given by Malayagiri, it is mentioned that pasyatta has no mati jnana and mati ajnana as its forms. Mati-jnana is direct sense experience which arises from the contact of the sense organs with an object, although knowledge due to mind is also included in mati-jnana. Hence, pasyatta would not include the formation of direct sense experience, although other forms of experience are included. Therefore, it would not be inappropriate to say that pasyatts is the power of the mind by which we retain our experiences and which becomes the basis for more experiences. However, we should not forget the fact that the ancient Jaina philosophers, as all other ancient Indian philosophers, were not clearly aware of the psycho logical significance of the problem. Theirs was insight and philosophic speculation.
THE SENSE ORGANS AND THE SENSES
The soul gets embodied through the accumulation of karma. Then starts the wheel of samsara The embodied soul comes into contact with the objects of the world and tries to grasp the nature of things through the specialized sources of the body. They are the sense organs. The Jaina thinkers, like other ancient philosophers of India, recognized two varieties of comprehension-sensory and extra-sensory. Sensory comprehension is conditioned by the senses and the mind, whereas extra-sensory comprehension occurs directly in the pure consciousness. Sensory comprehension is possible through the sense organs. The sense organs are very often considered as windows through which the soul cognizes the external world. In Ganadharavada we get a description of the process of cognition as coming out through the senses, as Devadatta looks through the five windows of his palace.’ Pancastikayasara describes the function of the sense in a similar way. The sense organs are denoted by the word indriya, and indriya refers to the instrumental nature of the source of knowledge. There are two ways in which the word indriya can be looked at. hrdriya is referred to as the capacity of experience: it is paramaisvarya upabhoga samartha. It is also referred to as that through which experience is possible: idvate iti indriyam. The Jaina philosophers called such cognition paroksa jnana (indirect knowledge), because it comes through the sense organs, which are different from the soul. Later, it began to be called samvyavahnrai prat yaksa. The Jainas considered that the indriyas are impediments to the attainment of pure consciousness and also to the purification of the soul. Indriyas are the source through which karma can flow in, and the source of empirical cognition. In the Upanisads, the nature and function of the sense organs have been described. The Atrnan was first alone. He knew, He was self-conscious. Then he became embodied. The sense organs became instruments through which experience is possible. Regarding the number of sense organs, Prajapati is said to have described sixteen parts of the body. In the Prasna Upanisad the parts are enumerated. The iudriyas are considered as one. The Swetasvatara Ulanisad also gives such a classification. The distinction between the sense organs, jiianendriyas, and motor organs, karrnendriyas, was made later. The name of indriya for an organ of sense was first mentioned in the Kausitaki Upanisad. In the Persona Upanishad the ten indriyas were subordinated to the mana as the central organ. In the Maitri Upanisad, the jiianendriyas are described as the five reins; the motor organs (karmerldriyas), are the horses; manas is the driver; prakrti is the whip; F the vocal organ, the prehensive organ, the locomotive organ, tile evacuative organ and the generative organ are the five karmendriyas.
The Buddhists recognize six varieties of consciousness, visual, olfactory, gustatory, tactile, and purely mental. Then there are six asrayas, the repositories of the functions of the senses. They are the visual, auditory, olfactory, gustatory and tactual organs, and also the mind. The five sense organs are made up of the five elements.
But, following the tradition of the Upcrni, sadic thought as in the Prasna and Maitri, the Sarhkhya philosophers mentioned the organs and manas, which are instruments of the soul for experience and activity. They have mentioned five sense organs, five motor organs, and manas. Sometimes, thirteen organs are mentioned, including ahamkara and buddhi. In that case, mind, nhamkara, and buddhi are the internal organs, called antahkarana, and the other ten are the external organs. The sense organs are not the products of gross matter but of ahariakara. Aharhkara is psycho-physical in nature. The functions of the sense organs are sensory in nature. They are concerned with getting experience. They are, therefore, called jnanendriyas. The function of the motor organs is bodily activity. They are, therefore, called karmemdriyas. The functions of the two can be compared to the afferent and efferent nervous systems. In the evolution. of life from aharikara, the manas, the sense organs and the motor organs are developed out of the preponderance of sattva. The ‘Tanmatrns’ are due to tamas. Rajas is the force which gives impetus to sattva and tamas. But Vijnanabhiksu says that mind alone is due to sattva, while the sense organs and the motor organs have evolved out of Rajas. The internal organs are described as the main gate-keepers, while external sense organs are the subordinate gate-keepers.
Sarhkara accepts the view that there are eleven organs (indriyas): five sense organs (jnanendriyas), five motor organs (karmendriyas), and one internal organ (antahkarana). The antahkaraya assumes different forms according to the diverse functions it takes. For instance, the function of manas is doubt, the function of buddhi is determination. Ahamkara is ego consciousness, and citta is concerned with recollection. The five sense organs are made of elements like earth, water, air, fire and akasa. The sattvic part is predominant in the jnanendriyas. The rajas part predominates in the karmendriyas. The internal organs are made up of the sattvic part and the five elements combined.
The Jainas have accepted the five sense organs alone, although the mind is considered as a quasi-sense organ, a no-indriya. The motor organs are recognized as instruments of experience and behaviour. The Jainas argue that, if motor organs were to be recognized as bidriyas only because they are instruments of special types of physical function, then the number of indriyas would have to be extended indefinitely. The Jainas treat as indriyas only those which are the conditions of specific cognition. Zimmer says that, according to the Jainas, the life monads enjoying the highest states of being, hzaman or divine, are possessed of five sense faculties as well as of a thinking faculty (manas), and the span of life (ayus), physical strength (kaya bala), power of speech(vaca bala), and the power of respiration (svasochvasa bala). In the Samkhya Yoga and the Vedanta systems, five faculties of action (karmendriyas), are added to the five sense faculties. The karwendriya are analogous to the Jaina idea of bala. ‘Apparently, the Jaina categories represent a comparatively primitive archaic analysis and description of human nature, many of the details of which underlie and remain incorporated in the later classic Indian view’.
The Nyaya system has similar arguments against the recognition of motor organs as indriyas. Jayanta maintains that if the tongue, hands and feet etc., are regarded as indriyas, many other organs should also be admitted as such. The function of swallowing food is discharged by the throat. The breast performs the function of embracing. The shoulders carry burden. All these should, then, be recognized as organs or indriyas., Again, the function of one sense organ cannot be discharged by another. For instance, visual cognition is not possible without eyes. But that is not the case with motor organs. A person grasps things with his hands, but can also walk a little with his hands. If the different parts of the body doing different functions are included among motor organs, the throat, the breast and the shoulders would all be motor organs. The Jainas made the same point. In fact, the Jainas say that all motor organs can be included in the tactual sense organ.
Even in the West, the problem of classification of the sense organs has been very old. It very often depends on the view taken of the sensations originating in the skin and the internal organs of the body. Traditionally, there are five special senses: vision, -audition, smell, taste, and touch or feeling. Aristotle mentioned the five senses, although he expressed some doubt about touch as a single sense. Current popular usage is in the Aristotelian tradition. However, at different times, specially of recent years, the list has been expanded. The ‘extra’ senses have come out of the sense of feeling by the process of sub-division. Boring, listing the sense qualities of feeling, includes pressure and other factors in the sense of feeling. In the history of classification of the senses, there have been in general three logically distinct approaches. They may be grouped together (i) qualitatively, on the basis of observational similarity: (ii) stimulus-wise, with respect to the object or forms of physical energy that logically set them off; and (iii) anatomically, in accordance with the system of sense organs. Gelded says that the anatomical basis seems to provide the best organizational principle. For instance, we could talk of the sense of green and the sense of grey, but since we know that the production of these qualities is the work of a single anatomical unit, the eye, we are accustomed to group the two classes of sense experiences together as visual.
Modern physiology maintains that all movement is due to the activity of the muscles. Muscles are made of bundles of contractile fibers by which movements are effected. There are three types of muscles: (i) skeletal muscles, (ii) smooth muscles, and (iii) cardiac muscles. Cardiac muscles are controlled by the nervous system, and are located in the heart. Skeletal muscles have a much wider distribution. They are attached to the bones of the skeleton, making bodily movement possible. Smooth muscles are found in many of the internal organs, as in the stomach walls and in the iris of the eye. Reflex and voluntary movements are possible because of muscles. In man, muscles are controlled by the nervous system. The nervous system consists of a mechanism for perceiving change in the environment, and another for reacting to the environment.l Thus, all physiological functions are possible owing to the stimulation of the afferent nervous system which reacts through efferent nerves by using the muscles and tendons in its activity. In this sense, it could well be said that all physical functions may arise out of the sense of touch. In invertebrate animals like the protozoa, the chemical sense seems to be the only sense for all experience and activity. Scientists are not agreed on the question whether these animals show reactions owing to the chemical sense or to the mechanical stimulation. Schaeffer thinks that it is due to mechanical stimulation. Metalnikov believes that the discrimination is a chemical one. The same problem continues to vex scientists in the case of animals like the coelenterates, flat worms, annelids, molluscs even up to the insect level. Thus, we find that in the case of the lower animals, especially the invertebrates, the sense of touch appears to be predominant and to be the source of all experience and activity.
The Jaina philosophers, as pointed out earlier, showed that all motor organs can be reduced to experiences due to the sense of touch. However, this does not mean that the ancient Jaina philosophers scientifically annalysed the physiological processes of motor responses. Knowledge of physiology had not developed to the stage required for such analysis. But their insight showed them that all bodily functions including those of speech, excretion and reproduction, are reducible to muscular movement due to the nervous stimulation and response.
It is for this reason that the senses were regarded as mutually identical when looked at from the standpoint of unity of substance. They had all of them fundamental identity. All of them involved neural responses. But this identity is not absolute. They were regarded as numerically different from another point of view. Their specific functions were different. This attitude is due to the catholic outlook of the Jainas, which made them ready to accept all correct points of view, however they differed from their own. This is due to the anekanta vada of the Jainas. If the sense organs were identical, then the organ of touch would experience taste and the rest also. In that case, the other organs would be superfluous. Further, the perfection of, or partial injury to, one organ would similarly affect the other sense organs. Similarly, if the difference between the sense organs were absolute, they could not possibly cooperate in giving a synthetic judgment, like ‘I see what I touch’. For instance, we very often get an experience like, ‘I see the ice is cold’.
But we cannot attribute to the ancient Jaina philosophers experimental acumen in the physiological and psychological analysis of the nature of sense organs. This analysis was more from the metaphysical point of view. The Jainas accepted the identity and also the diversity of the sense organs because of their logical outlook. Their non-absolutist anekanta attitude to the problems of life gave them insight to find the truth in the different views presented. Thus, the analysis of the sense organs presented by the Jaina philosophers was more a result of philosophic insight that, of scientific analysis. However, it cannot be denied that the analysis comes nearer to the description of the senses and their distinctions given by the modern physiologists, although the Jainas were not aware of the experimental and analytic basis required for such a description.
The Jaina analysis of the structure and functions of the sense organs is unique and deserves study with reference to the problems of modern physiology. It is not possible for us to go into the details of the analysis of the sense organs in the light of the discoveries of modern physiology, as it would be outside the scope of the present work. However, a brief survey of such comparative analysis is necessary.
The senses are called indriyas because they have been produced by indra, which means karma. They are the manifestations of namakarma, which is the karma which determines the nature and composition of our organism. The nama-karma determines what body we shall get, whether a human body or the body of a lower animal. Similarly, the physiological defects of individuals are due to this karma. The nature and functions of the sense organs are determined by the nama karma. The sense organs serve as organs of perception of objects for a soul which is polluted with karma. The soul in a state of such pollution would not be able to get the direct knowledge due to its own nature and pure consciousness, for it is clouded by the knowledge-obscuringjnanavarayya-and intuition-obscuring-darsanavaraniya karma. In such an embodied state of the soul, experience and knowledge are possible only through the instrumentality of sense organs. Therefore, sense organs are the means through which empirical knowledge is possible.
According to the Jainas there are five sense organs like the tactual, the gustatory, the olfactory, the visual, and the auditory. Each of these has its own characteristic capacity of experiencing touch, taste, smell, colour, and sound. Each of these organs is structurally of two parts, the physical and the psychical. The physical part of the sense orgait is called dravyendriya. The psychical part is called bhavendriya. The physical part of the sense organs is caused by the rise of the corresponding nama-karma. The psychical part of the sense organs is caused by the destruction and subsidence of the knowledge-obscuring karma, jhanavaraiziya karma. Each of these two parts is again sub-divided in two parts as: dravyen, driya is divided into (i) nivmtti and (ii) upalcarana. Nivrtti is the organ itself and upakarana is the protective physical cover like the eye-lid in the case of the eye. Each of these two, again, is sub-divided in two parts: atitarriga and balziraga-internal and external. The internal part (antaranga), is very often talked of as soul its if. It is to be identified with the psychic element which is necessary for any experience. It permeates the whole sense organ. Bahiranga (the external sense part), is the material which is permeated by the psychic element. In the case of upakarana, the protective cover like the eye-lid is the bahiranga. The matter immediately surrounding the eye may be identified with the antaranga of the physical part of the sense organ, although it is possible to say that in all cases the antararga refers to the psychic element present in the sense organs and necessary for sense experience. However, it would be more appropriate to speak of the antaranga of the material sense organ in terms of the material only; and, in that sense, it would be apter to say that the antaranga of the dravyendriya refers to the matter that is inside the sense organ and is permeated by the psychic element. For instance, we compare this to the cornea of the eye. In fact, we may also include the vitreous humour in the eye.
The bhavendriya, the psychic part of the sense organ, is also divided into two parts: (i) labdhi, and (ii) upayoga. Labdhi is the manifestation of the specific sense experience due to the destruction and subsidence of the knowledge-obscuring karma. In fact, it may be said to refer to the removal of the psychic impediments which have to be eliminated if sense experience is to be possible. These impediments are not physical. like insufficiency of light in the case of vision, but psychic, in the case of the sense experience itself. (Upayoga is the psychic force determining the specific sense experience coming out of the contact of the specific sense organ with the object of stimulation. It is the force of horme operating in all psychic life and especially operating in a specific way in the determination of the sense experience. The word horme has been used earlier as the psychic force which determines our experience and behaviour. This force operates in a specific sense experience, like sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. Although upayoga is the common force necessary for all these experiences, it gives rise to different experiences in the different senses, because it gets specific expressions from the physiological and psychic conditions differently presented. A general table of the distinction of the structure of the sense organs is given in table . It is based on the analysis of the structure of the sense organs as given by the Jainas. The details of the structure are worked out on the basis of the description given by Umasvati in Tattvarthasutra Chapter II.
Thus, the Jainas make a distinction between the physical structure and the psychic element involved in the sense organs. The physical part is the organ itself, It is the physiological instrument through which the individual receives the sense impressions. The outer part of the structure is the protective organ. It also facilitates the reception of the external stimulation. The internal part of the structure refers to the sensory nerves and the humours as in the case of the eye.
It is the antaranga. Nivrtti is the internal physiological composition of the sense organ. Upayoga is the hormic force which is responsible for the sense experience. Labdhi is the manifestation of the horme in order to produce a specific sense experience under suitable psychic and physiological conditions.
The Jainas have given a detailed analysis of the structure of the different sense organs. For instance, the internal part of the sense of hearing is like the kadarnba flower or like a ball of flesh, mamsa gola-kara. The internal eye is of the size of a grain of corn, dhanya masurakara. The sense organ of smell is like a flower, mukta kusuma candra. The organ of taste is like the edge of a knife. The sense of touch is of various forms. Similar descriptions can be given regarding the upakarana or protective cover of the organ. For instance, the external part of the organ of taste consists of a collection of clear particles of matter, svecchatara pudgala samuha.
The spread-outness of the sense organs is another problem mentioned by the Jainas. The eye is the smallest. The organ of hearing is also small, but it is bigger than the eye. Sometimes it expands when it hears loud sounds. The organ of smell occupies the largest space. However, it is limited in extent. If it were unlimited in extent, experience of smell would be possible even when the object
touches any part of the body. But this is not the fact. The organ of taste has greater extent, although it is still limited, angula mita. However, the sense organ of touch is unlimited in extent. It pervades the whole body. It is sarira vyapaka. Thus the sense of touch is considered by the Jainas as primary in one more sense. It is possible in any part of the body.
Modern psychologists point out that the sense organ of touch is really unlimited in extent, because it gives rise to various sense experiences like pressure, temperature and organic pain. In fact, even the internal parts of the organism give us experiences which are reducible to the experience due to tactile stimulation. Organic pains like stomach-ache are, in fact, species of the experience of touch. In this sense, all sense experiences can be reduced to the tactile sense experience. The Jainas can be said to be justified in giving primacy to the sense of touch.
The Jaina description of the different parts of the organs may well be compared to the description of the sense organs given by modern physiologists, although the latter have given an accurate and detailed analysis of the structure of sense organs based on experimental investigations. We may, however, note that experimental investigation was
[Please this table see file name ‘wide table page no. 13,57,73’]
not possible in those days. Modern physiologists say that the vision is far more complex than any other sense organ.. We may take the example of the anatomy of the human eye for comparison. Fig. shows the comparative picture of the anatomy of the human eye according to the modern physiological and the Jaina view. The outer layer
Upakarana includes protective cover. Includes aqueous humour and
Includes eyelids and sclerotic coat. choroid coat.
Nivrtti of Dravyerzdriya is compared to the matter that surrounds the internal part. Iris may be included in this.
Shows the physiological internal composition of the sense organ. It includes retina, vitreous humour and lens.
of the material sense organ of the eye consists of a tough resistant material which is termed sclera. This material gives substance to the eye-ball. The most forward part of the sclera is transparent. It is called cornea. It is a tough resistant material which permits the passage of light rays and protects the eye. The eye-lids and the sclera may together be compared to the outer protective cover of the structure of the dravyendriya. It is the upakarana of the eye. In fact, eyelids are the outer part and the cornea is the inner part. On the inside of the back is the retina which is most important. It is a system of highly specialized nerve cells. The cells are receptors sensitive to light. The
image is focussed upon. this layer. The retina consists of two types of nerve cells, rods and cones. Then we have the lens, which is transparent, consisting of a semi-solid substance enveloped by a thin capsule. .Just in front of the leans is the thin muscular layer of the iris. It has an opening at the center through which the light rays may pass. This circular aperture is the pupil of the eye. The lens, the iris and the pupil can be compared to the nivrtti, specially to the external part of the nivrtti. The retina and the vitreous humour may be compared to the internal part of the nivrtti. Similarly, the aqueous humour between the cornea and the lens may also be included in this.
The physiologists do not account for the psychic part of the sense organ which has been called bhavendriya. It refers to the psychic factors which are necessary conditions for the sense organs giving the sense experience. The basic psychological factor required for the sense experience of the specific sense organ is the psychic force, the horn, which has been called the upayoga. This force is operating in all experience and behaviour and is responsible for the specific sense experience.