Acharya Kundkund

 Translated by A.N. Upadhye

Book 1

  1. Here I pay obeisance to VArdhamana, the saviour, the promulgator of the law, who is saluted by the suras, Asuras and lords  of men, and who has washed off the dirt of destructive Karmas.
  2. (I pay obeisance) also to the remaining Tirthankaras (i.e., the promulgators of the creed) along with all siddhas (i.e., the liberated souls) whose nature is pure and to the sramanas (i.e., the saints) whose behaviour is characterised by knowledge, faith, conduct, penance and every.
  3. I pay obeisance to them collectively as well as individually and to the contemporary Arahantas in the Manusa region.
    4-5. After saluting Arahantas (i.e., Tirthankaras), Siddhas also Ganadharas (i.e., the direct disciples of Tirthankaras), the band of preceptors and all the saints, and after having taken tie life (i.e, a state of life, Asramna) of foremost knowledge and faith of  pure nature, I adopt equanimity whereby Nirvana is attained.
  1. Nirvana, along with the glories of Devas, Asuras and lords of men, accrues to a soul through conduct pre-eminently characterised by faith and knowledge.
  2. Verily this realisation is the Dharma, which, in turn, is pointed out as equanimity; and equanimity is the state of the self in  which infatuatory perturbation is absent.
  3. For the time being a substance is said to be constituted of that by which it is transformed; therefore the self should be recognised as Dharma, when there is developed the condition of Dharma.
  4. The Soul whose nature is amenable to modification comes to be auspicious, inauspicious or pure according as it develops auspicious, inauspicious or pure states (of consciousness).
  5. There is no substance without a modification and no modification without a substance; the existence of a thing is made up of substance, quality and modification.
  6. The self that has developed equanimity, if endowed with pure activities, attains heavenly happiness.
  7. By the rise of inauspicious activities, the soul wanders for long as a low-graded human being, a sub-human being and a hellish one being subject for ever to thousands of miseries.
  8. The happiness of those who are famous for their pure consciousness or serenity is transcendental, born from the self, supersensuous, incomparable, infinite and indestructible.
  9. That Sramana, who has well understood all things and the texts that explain them, who is endowed with self-control and penances, who is free from attachment, and to whom pleasure and pain are alike, is said to represent pure consciousness. (For the definition of Sutra, see Gatha 34).
  10. He, who has manifested pure consciousness and is free from (knowledge and connation-) obscuring, obstructive and deluding Karmic dust, has become self sufficient; and fully comprehends the objects of knowledge.
  11. The omniscient, who has realised his nature and is worshipped by the lords of all worlds, becomes self-sufficient; and he is called Svayambhu.
  12. Further, he represents a condition of the collocation of permanence, origination and destruction; though therein the origination is without destruction and the destruction devoid of origination.
  13. In fact, every entity is characterised by existence; and it is with regard to only one aspect that every object suffers origination and destruction.
  14. He develops knowledge and happiness after having exhausted the destructive Karmas, being endowed with excellent infinite strength and excessive lustre and after becoming supersensuous.
    *1. The miseries of those beings, that have faith in him who is the best among all things and who is respected by the foremost among gods of demons, are exhausted.
  1. In the case of the omniscient, the pleasure or pain is not physical, because he is endowed with super sensuousness: so it should be known.
  2. The omniscient who develops knowledge directly visualizes all objects and their modifications; he does never comprehend them through the sensational stages such as outliner grasp.
  3. Nothing is indirect to him who is himself ever omniscient and who is all-round rich in the qualities of all the organs of senses  though himself beyond the senses.
  4. The soul is con-extensive with knowledge; knowledge is said to be co-extensive with the object of knowledge; the object of knowledge comprises the physical and non-physical universe; therefore knowledge is omnipresent.
    24-25. He, who does not admit the soul to be co-extensive with knowledge, must indeed concede that the soul is either smaller or larger than knowledge. If the soul is smaller, the knowledge, being insentient, cannot know; if larger, how can it know in the absence of knowledge?
  1. The great Jina is everywhere and all the objects in the world are within him, since the Jina is an embodiment of knowledge  and since they are the objects of knowledge.
  2. The doctrine of Jina is that knowledge is the self and in the absence of the self there cannot be (any) knowledge; therefore, knowledge is the self, while the self is knowledge or anything else.
  3. The knower has knowledge for this nature and all the objects are within the range of the knowledge, just as the objects of sight are within the ken of the eye, though there is no mutual inherence.
  4. The knower, who is beyond sense-perception, necessarily knows and sees the whole world neither entering into nor entered into by the objects of knowledge, just as the eye sees the objects of sight.
  5. The knowledge operates on the objects, just as a sapphire, thrown in the milk, pervades the whole of it with its lustre.
  6. If those are not within the knowledge, knowledge cannot be all pervasive; the knowledge is all-pervasive, how then objects are not existing in it?
  7. The omniscient lord neither accepts nor abandons, nor transforms the external objectivity; he sees all around, and knows  everything completely.
  8. He, who clearly understands the self as of the nature of the knower on the authority of the scriptural knowledge, is called a srutakevalin by the sages that enlighten the world.
  9. That which is preached by the Jina through words, which are constituted of material substance, it called the sutra (or the sacred text); knowledge consists in knowing it, and hence the sacred text also is designated as knowledge.
  10. He who knows is knowledge; the self does not become a knower with knowledge (as an extraneous instrument). The very self develops knowledge, and all the objects stand (reflected) in the knowledge.
  11. Therefore the self is knowledge; the object of knowledge is the substance, which is said to be threefold; he substance
    comprises the soul and the (five) other (substances), which are prone to modification.
  1. All modifications, present and absent, of all those types of substances, stand essentially (reflected) in the knowledge, as if in  the present.
  2. Those, which have never originated and those, in fact, that have been and are already destroyed are the absent  modifications; they are directly visualised in omniscience.
  3. If that omniscience would not directly visualise the future and past modifications, who then would call that knowledge  super-natural?
  4. It is declared that it is impossible to know the past and future for those who (are accustomed to) know the object by means of discrimination and other stages (of perception), when it has fallen within the range of the senses.
  5. That is called supersensuous knowledge which knows any substance, with or without space-points, with or without form,  and those modifications which have not come into existence and those which are destroyed.
  6. If the knower develops the influence of the object known, then he does not possess the knowledge which is born after the  destruction of Karmas; the great Jinas say that he who so develops (merely) enjoys the fruit of Karma.
  7. The great Jinas say that portions of Karmas are necessarily operating (and giving their fruit); he, who is infatuated with, or shows attachment or aversion towards, them, necessarily incurs bondage (of Karmas).
  8. In the case of Arahantas, at the time of their Arhatship, (certain activities like) standing, sitting, moving about and religious  discourse are natural (and necessary consequences of the Karmic fruition with no effort on their part), just as acting deceitfully is in the case of women.
  9. Arahantas owe their status to the fruits of merits (or meritorious Karmas); their activities are the consequences of the Karmic operations; their activities are called ksayiki (i.e., due to the destruction of Karmas), because they are free from infatuation etc.
  10. The transmigratory existence would be an impossibility in the case of all the embodied beings, if the soul itself is naturally  incapable of developing auspicious and inauspicious states.
  11. That knowledge is called ksayika (i.e., produced after the destruction of Karmas) which knows completely and simultaneously the whole range of variegated and unequal objectivity of the present and otherwise.
  12. He, who does not know simultaneously the objects of the three tenses and in the three worlds, cannot know even a single substance with its (infinite) modifications.
  13. A single substance has infinite modes and infinite are the classes of substances; if he does not know (them) simultaneously, how will he be able to know all of them?
  14. if the knower, after coming into contact with the objectivity, produces knowledge step by step; that knowledge cannot be eternal, neither can it be ksayika nor all-pervasive.
  15. The omniscience of the Jina knows simultaneously the (whole range of) variegated and unequal objectivity possible in all places and present in three tenses; indeed great is the glory of that knowledge !
  16. The soul (of the omniscient), though knowing all the things, does not transform itself (under their influence), does not receive (any-thing external), nor does it become one among them; and hence it is said to be without Karmic bondage.
    1. *2. Him ever adores the devoted world consisting of Devas, Asuras and lords of men; so do I devotedly adore him.
    1. Just as knowledge of various entities is super-sensitive with reference to non-concrete and sensitive with regard to concrete  things, so too is happiness; that which is the best of those (two) should be realized.
    2. That is pratyaksa knowledge which perceives (all) the non-concrete (things), among the concrete those (atoms etc.) that are beyond the scope of senses, those that are hidden and all others that are related to substances and also that are not.
    3. The soul itself is non-concrete (i.e., devoid of the sense-qualities); when it is embodied, it comes to be concrete; (thus, being coupled with senses,) it perceives the perceptible through (the stages of) outlinear grasp etc., or sometimes it does not.
    4. The sense-qualities of touch, taste, smell, colour and sound have a reference to material objects; the sense-organs can never grasp them simultaneously.
    5. The sense-organs are the foreign stuff; they can never be said to form the nature of the soul. How then what is perceived by them can be direct (pratyaksa or immediate) for the soul?
    6. 58.Perception of things through a foreign agency is called paroksa, indirect or mediate; whatever is perceived by the soul alone  is pratyaksa, direct or immediate?

    1. That self-born, perfect, and pure knowledge which spreads over infinite things and which is free from (the stages of perception such as) outlinear grasp etc., is called the real happiness.
    2. Whatever is known as omniscient knowledge, that alone is a condition of happiness, no (trace of) miserly is said to be there, since the destructive Karmas are exhausted.
    3. (In the omniscient) the knowledge reaches the very verge of objectivity, and the vision extends over the physical and superphysical universe; in Him all that is undesirable is destroyed and whatever is desirable is achieved.
    4. The abhavya souls do not believe the statement that the happiness of those who are free from destructive Karmas is the best of all, while the bhavya souls accept it (and believe).
    5. Lords of men, Asuras and Amaras, harassed by senses that are born with them, being unable to bear with the pain, sport themselves with attractive objects of senses.
    6. Know that misery to be natural for those who are attached to the objects of senses; if it is not natural, there would not be any attempt for the objects of senses.
    7. It is not the body, but the very soul itself, that develops happiness having obtained desired objects that are naturally endowed with the qualities of touch etc.
    8. Really speaking, the body does not make any embodied being happy even in heaven; but the soul itself develops happiness  or misery coming under the influence of the objects of enjoyment.
    9. If the visual faculty of people could remove darkness, then the lamp is of no avail; so when the soul itself is happiness, what then the objects of enjoyment contribute?
    10. Just as the sun, all by himself is lustrous and warm, and a deity of the sky, so also the liberated soul is (endowed with) knowledge and happiness, and is a divinity of the world.
    11. *3. He is Arhan (i.e., worshipful one) whose glory consists of lustre, conation, knowledge, supernatural accomplishment, happiness, affluence and the leading lordship of the three worlds.

      *4. I repeatedly offer obeisance to the Siddha, who is superior and never suffering in his merits, who holds lordship over men and Devas and who is ever (hereafter) bound to take birth anymore.

    1. The soul, that is devoted to the worship of God, ascetic and the preceptor, to the offering of gifts, to virtuous conduct, and  to the observance of fasts, is of auspicious activities (or manifestation of consciousness).
    2. The soul, endowed with auspicious manifestation of consciousness, is born as a sub-human or human being or a god, and during that period, obtains different kinds of sensual pleasures.
    3. It is evident from the doctrine that the happiness even of the gods is not self-established; oppressed by physical urge, they sport themselves with attractive objects of senses.
    4. If men, denizens of hell, sub-human beings and gods (indiscriminately) suffer misery incidental of body, then of what avail is the (distinction of) auspicious or inauspicious activity of the soul?
    5. Indra and other sovereigns, quite engrossed as if they are happy, nourish their bodies etc. by means of enjoyments that are the consequences of auspicious activities.
    6. If there are, in fact, different merits resulting from auspicious activities (or mental condition), they (merely) occasion a sensual thirsts to all the beings among whom the gods come last (in the order of enumeration).
    7. Moreover those beings, with their thirst enhanced, pained with desires and burning with misery, hanker after the pleasures of senses and experience them till their death.
    8. Happiness derived through sense-organs is dependent, amendable to disturbances, terminable, a cause of bondage and dangerous; and hence it is misery in disguise.
    9. He, who does not admit that there is no difference between merit and demerit, wanders in this horrible and boundless   transmigratory existence muffled in delusion.
    10. Thus, knowing the nature of reality, he, who does not entertain attachment or aversion for any object, destroys all physical pain, being endowed with pure manifestation of consciousness.
    11. Having abandoned sinful activities and proceeding on the path of auspicious conduct, if one does not abandon delusion etc., he cannot realize the pure self.
    12. *5. He is the God who is known for his austerities and self-control, who is pure, who paves the path of heaven and liberation, who is worshipped by the lords of Amaras and Ausras and who stands at the summit of the physical world.

      *6. Those men attain eternal happiness who salute the God among the gods of gods, who is foremost among the great saints, and who is the preceptor of the three worlds.

    1. He, who knows the Arahanta with respect to substantiality, quality and modification, realizes himself; and his delusion, in fact, dwindles into destruction.
    2. The soul, being free from delusion and having grasped well the reality of the self, realizes the pure self, if it abandons attachment and aversion.
    3. It is in this way that even all the Arahantas have destroyed portions of Karmas; preaching the same they attained Nirvana: my obeisance to them.
    4. *7. Bow unto those persons who are pure in faith, foremost in knowledge, practising perfect conduct, and who deserve respect, honour and gifts.

    1. The deluded notion of the soul about substances etc. is called delusion, muffled therein and developing attachment or aversion the soul is baffled.
    2. Various kinds of bondage become possible, when the soul develops delusion, attachment or aversion; therefore they are to be destroyed.
    3. False perception of things, absence of kindness towards subhuman and human beings and indulging with objects of pleasure-these are the characteristics of delusion or infatuation.
    4. He, who regularly understands the reality from the Jaina scriptures with direct and other proofs, exhausts the heap of  delusion; therefore the scripture should be studied.
    5. Substances, qualities and their modifications are (technically) signified by the term artha; and among them, it is said, that the substance is the substratum of qualities and modifications.
    6. He, who destroys delusion, attachment and aversion, after having grasped the discourse of the Jina, escapes from all miseries within a short time.
    7. He, who really knows his soul as constituted of knowledge and others as only related with it as substances, effects the destruction of delusion.
    8. Therefore, if the soul aspires after the delusionless state of the self, it should understand from the Jaina creed the self and the non-self among the (scheme of) substances with regard to their quantities.
    9. He, who, in his state of Sramanya (i.e., asceticism), never believes in these substances with their closely related generality of existence and various special qualities, is not a Sramana; and religious purity is not possible for him.
    10. The great souled Sramana, who has put an end to his delusive vision, who is expert in scriptures and who has established himself in conduct free from attachment, is qualified as Dharma.
    11. *8. He acquires religious merit who, at his sight, is pleased, stands up and respects him with salutation, obeisance etc.

      *9. Thereby, human and sub-human beings, obtaining the grades of gods and men, have their desires ever fulfilled with wealth  and affluence.