Conception of soul (Jiva)

93. According to Jain philosophy, soul is eternal and beginning less. It has life, consciousness, Upayoga (knowledge and perception) and is potent. It performs actions and is affected by their results, is conditioned by its own body (characteristic of contraction and expansion), is incorporeal and is ordinarily found with Karma. In addition, it is capable of becoming free from the defect of Karma, gets to the highest point of the universe, knows all and perceives all and obtains the transcendental bliss ever-lasting34 The nature of soul is considered dual in character. According to the realistic standpoint, it remains the same under all states, while according to the practical standpoint, it is transformed into modes and this becomes different in number, place and form etc.

94. The souls are of two types, namely I) Samsaris (transmigrating beings) those who undergo or subjects to the cycle of wandering into births and experience the fruit of Karmas, and 2) Muktas, the emancipated souls. The transmigrating souls are of two kinds, Trasas (mobiles) and Sthavaras (immobile). The Sthavaras are further divided into five kinds, viz. earth, water, fire, air and plants possessing the touching sensation. The mobile beings are from two- sensed beings onwards. The senses are five, viz. touch, taste, smell, sight, and hearing. The senses are also of two kinds, the physical sense and psychic sense. Earth, water, plants etc. have one sense of touch and the warm, the ant, the bee, and man etc. have each one more sense than the preceding one. These living beings possess of some essential characteristics called Pranas, viz. Bala, Indriya, Ayu, and Ucchavasa (breathing). The means of birth of beings are also discussed. It is of three kinds, viz. I). Spontaneous generation (Sammurchhana), ii) birth from uterus (Garbhaja), and iii) Upapadajanma (that is the seat to which the soul goes and in which it is born).

95. The existence of soul is proved from the world “Soul” itself. The very thought whether the soul exists or not proves its existence, because man can think whether something is the pillar or the person while and inanimate substance cannot. No one except the soul can raise doubt. Modern scientists are also realizing the existence of soul. For instance, it is said, “This world is not the machine without soul. It has not come into existence by accident. Behind the veil of matter, is working the mind and consciousness. This force may be given any nomenclature”.