Jain Study Circular
Glimpses of the April 1999 Issue

Quotations from scriptures:

Our scriptures present a pristine view of the basic tenets of Jainism. Our readers are encouraged to study the following quotations and understand the ever-increasing gap between the fundamentals of Jainism and our religious practices.

Quotations From SUTRAKRITAANG:
Discourse On Renunciation

Senseless ritualistic activities do not cause shedding of karma;
the spirited savants shed their karmas with little effort;
the intelligent persons, who do not have greed and pride,
enjoy the virtue of contentment and do not obtain any demerit.

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Guest Editorial:

A scholar's view of the futility of routine and repetitious lectures, discourses, and discussions during functions and celebrations prevalent in our society:

Scholarly Squabbling
by Dr. Sudeep Jain

In many instances, we notice discrepancy and confrontation in society. Hence, for a discerning individual, it is best to withdraw, like a tortoise, from outside agitation and focus on the inner self. Otherwise, one may become entangled in the poisonous thorns of corrupt social interactions, and suffer physical and mental agony.

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From Religious Books:

In the following article, certain unique features of Indian religions and philosophy have been presented by the eminent scholar, Dr. Jagdishchandra Jain. Such facts are seldom brought out in run-of-the-mill discourses and articles.

Some Aspects Of Indian Religions And Philosophy:
A Rational Scholarly View
by Dr. Jagdishchandra Jain

A keen competition and a 'tug of war' seems to be going on everywhere; that is how the selfish motive of man is fulfilled. Only a few are thriving and flourishing, whilst a majority are forced to lead a life of scarcity, want and impoverishment. The tendency of today's thought is to have more and more comforts and an easygoing life, without caring for what might happen to others. Unfortunately, the myths of knowledge and progress seem to have been linked to scientific development.

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From Religious Books:

Religion leads to genuine happiness and peace of mind. In pursuit of such a goal, a householder gradually progresses towards the life of a monk. This is the path to spiritual progress described Acharya Samant Bhadra's RATNAKARAND SHRAAVAKAACHAAR and other scriptures.

The Grades Leading A Householder To Monkhood
by Manish Modi

We realize that worship of gods and goddesses who themselves are not free from attachment and aversion can not alleviate our suffering. It is our karma, our own feelings, thoughts and deeds, that can help. Whatever pleasant and unpleasant events occur in life are part of our worldly existence. One who has rational perception accepts this truth.

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Four interesting moral stories; one from the life of Bhagwaan Mahaveer, one from the life of Mahatma Gandhi, one from the life of Acharya Vinoba Bhave, and one from the life of Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the first President of the Republic of India.

Moral Stories
by Shri Yash Pal Jain

Nobody can be made to give up wrong things by our getting angry or by our giving up food. We can change others through love and patience. The love that can make the difference comes from within. Our hearts should be pure. If there are bad feelings in our hearts and we show insincere love, it makes matters worse.

Link to Complete Article

Excerpts From Past Issues:

Women in Indian culture, long before the days of women's liberation:

Women In Indian Culture

Man and woman are equal in status, but are not identical. They are a peerless pair each being complementary to the other; each helps the other, so that without the one the existence of the other can not be conceived. Therefore it follows as a necessary corollary from these facts, that anything that will impair the status of either of them will involve an equal ruin of both.

Women cannot do some things that men can. Their physiology prevents this. That, however, does not prove any inferiority on their part. We must do the things for which we are made and do them well.

Link to Complete Article

Excerpts From Past Issues:

Jainism in a nutshell:

by Sunit K. Jain

Jainism is a very old religion of India in which nonviolence (AHIMSA), truthfulness, non-stealing or non-cheating, purity of body and mind, and non-covetousness are the main virtues to follow. Of course, it is difficult but through self-motivation and determination, these virtues can be achieved.

Link to Complete Article

Excerpts From Past Issues:

An insightful view of the nonviolence of Jains:

What Is Nonviolence (AHIMSA) According To Jains

In spite of pressures from the rest of the society, Jains have followed the spirit of nonviolence for centuries. They have very courageously and patiently tried their best to contribute towards making the world happy and full of compassion for all. Nonviolence as propounded by the Jain scriptures, even if followed partially by the present generation, can stop the moral decay of the society and can help solve the intricate problems of the modern world. It can make life better for all people of the world.

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Excerpts From Studies In Jainism: Primer

The following article indicates that our practice of nonviolence begins with the self.

Practice Of Nonviolence

We should trust that our parents always want the best for us. Their love for us is instinctive and unselfish. So we should try to understand their viewpoint and value their advice.

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Observations & Views:

Presentation of richness of Jain culture:

An Introduction To Kurt Titze's Book 'Jainism:
A Pictorial Guide To The Religion Of Non-violence'

Again and again, while frequenting those remote places of religious worship, the wanderer will be fascinated by the sight of turrets, cupolas and lofty spires crowning a mountain range or lying nestled in the lap of mother earth. Whether it is a large stone-image of a Jina on the wayside bearing the marks of many a century, or a row of Tirthankaras chiselled into a huge boulder which suddenly comes into view around a corner, the beholder will for longer than just a fleeting moment be in accordance with the Jaina saints of old who crisscrossed this vast subcontinent barefooted for the sole purpose of keeping a faith alive that teaches, more so than any other religion, reverence to all that lives &endash; humans, animals, plants. The Jaina saints of today are still following that path.

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Readers' Comments:

Rasik H. & Kalpana Vagadia, Foxboro MA:

We hope that Jain Study Circular continues for ever in its present form. Please do not change it in any manner.

Jagdish P. Shah, Salem NH:

I read Jain Study Circular which helps me to see modern day problems within Jain perspective.

Nayana Flipse, Williamsport PA:

I truly enjoyed the article, 'Jainism At A Glance,' written by Mrs. Sushila Singhvi. It was enlightening and educational, not to mention sweet and short.

Ashvin & Tarlika Sheth, Allen TX:

We receive the Jain Study Circular and enjoy reading it. The Circular answers various questions that arise in our minds. It provides a detailed understanding of our religion.

Dear Readers,

We greatly appreciate your interest in the Jain Study Circular.

- Directors of JSC


Annual Meeting of the Jain Study Circle

The annual meeting of the Jain Study Circle will be held on Sunday, June 6, 1999. Please call (201) 967-9344 or (718) 699-4653 or send us an e-mail if you wish to attend the annual meeting. The topic of discussion will be 'Practical Aspects of Rationalism;' reference: Studies In Jainism: Reader 2, Chapter 12.

Our readers and writers are requested to send articles for publication, and their comments and suggestions. Please follow the guidelines for writers published on page 20 of the January 1996 issue of the Jain Study Circular.

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