Laws of Jurisprudence and Their Working

I. Introduction

II.The Ten Prayascittas.

III. Some details about these.

IV. Implementation of the Punishment.

V. Laws of Jurisprudence for Nuns.

VI. Salient Features.

VII. Comparison with Buddhist Jurisprudence.

VIII. Epilogue.

1. Introduction

Having seen the qualifications that led to the formation of the hierarchy, let us now go into the core of the subject and see the details regarding the main prayascittas and the method or procedure of dealing with a transgressor (vavahara).

II. The Ten Prayascittas

The texts of the Svetambaras canon give the following ten prayascittas. (Than.,p. 355b; Bhag., pp. 920bff; Ova. p. 78; etc. etc.).

1. Aloynra (alochana)- nivedana tllakshanran shudhim yadrhtyaticharjatam tada lochanaaee’ The reporting of the transgression to the guru. Such a confession led to the mental purity of the transgressor as also gave him mental courage of confession.

2. Padikkamanr (pratikarmanr)- mithyadushkritam- Condemnation of a transgression committed. (aiyara)

3. Tadubhya – alochanamithyadushkrite – Confession and condemnation.

4. Viveg (vivek)– ashudhbhktadityag – giving up of transgressions like impure food etc.

5. Viyusag (viyutsarg) – kayotsarga: – practicing kayotsarga.

6. Tao (tapas) – nirvikritikadi – penance in the form of fasting or taking a particular kind of food.

7. Chhey ( chhed) – prvrjyapyary hasveekaranram  – the shortening of seniority or insubordination.

8. Mool – mhavrtaropanram – re-consecration.

9. Anrvatthappa (anvsthapya) krittapaso vrtaropanram  – temporary expulsion.

10. Parinchya (paranchik) – lingadibhedam – expulsion.

     The last one has been explained by the Ovavaiya commentary as tapovisheshenraivati charpargamanam (p. 79), i.e., the overcoming of transgression by means of the practicing of a peculiar kind of penance.

     This list of the ten prayascittas is the same in practically all the Svetambaras canonical texts.

     The list as given in the Digambaras text Mulacara differs a bit from that cited above. For instance, the first eight prayascittas are the same, but the ninth is substituted by ‘parihara’ and the tenth by ‘saddhana’. (Mul. 5, 165).

     The former has been divided by the commentator as ‘Ganapratibaddha’ and ‘apratibaddha’, and explained as -being the transgressions committed by a monk while leading the corporate life in a Gana, or the transgressions Committed by him when he was alone in a region foreign to him, respectively. The tenth prayascittas ‘saddhana’ has been explained to mean the determination on the part of the transgressor to give up transgressions and his reaffirmation of faith in the true religion.