Glimpses of the January 2007 Issue


Quotations from scriptures:

Selections from TATTVAARTH SUTRA

Enjoy the logical and systematic presentation of the sophisticated features of the Jain theory of karma presented by Acharya Umaswati in  TATTVAARTH SUTRA.

Quotations From Acharya Umaswati's TATTVAARTH SUTRA

The Jain religion attaches great importance on rationalism.  It is rationalism that advances the concept of freedom of each individual soul and that self-endeavor is the means to achieve it - the fundamental principle of Jainism.  No supreme being or scripture or teacher (guru) can liberate a soul from the bondage of karma.  The individual has to form his/her own concept of reality through study, observation and logical thinking.  Thus the individual develops rational perception and rational knowledge.  Then the person adopts rational conduct.

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From Religious Books:

 In the present article, Dr. Jaini has described the changes that take place in an individual's mental and physical state upon attaining rational perception.

 Rationalism (SAMYAKTVA)

by Dr. Padmanabh Jaini

Consciousness attuned only to actions or the results of actions generates perpetual continuation of the worldly (SAAMSAARIC) cycle.  Upon the attainment of rational perception, the soul turns away from such concerns; it undergoes a deliberate and mindful orientation of attention, coming to focus upon nothing but its own nature (SVABHAAV).  The body, the possessions, even the ever-changing psychological states (passions, anger, pride, self-pity, and so forth), are no longer identified with the self.  The functioning of consciousness is now characterized as cognitive (JNAAN-CHETNA); here the individual dwells only upon the innate and pure qualities of soul, realizing that the self is not doing anything in the world beyond simply knowing it.

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From Religious Books:

According to the eminent scholar, Dr. Sogani, Bhagwaan Mahaveer believed that creation of a healthy social order should follow spiritual perfection.

Mahaveer And Social Values

by Dr. Kamal Chand Sogani

Mahaveer was well aware of the fact that economic inequality and hoarding of essential commodities very much disturb social life and living.  These tendencies lead to exploitation and enslavement, and society is endangered.  Consequently, Mahaveer pronounced that the remedy for the ill of economic inequality is non-possessiveness (APARIGRAH).  All the means of illegitimate accumulation of materials (PARIGRAH) bring about social hatred, bitterness and exploitation.  The virtue of non-possessiveness implies that one should keep with oneself that which is necessary for one's living and the rest should be returned to society for its well-being.

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Jain Traditions:

A scholarly view of Jain worship that brings out the fact that hollow rituals do not constitute genuine observances of our religion.

Worship Of The Worthy: Based On Jain Texts

by Smt. Alka Jain

A genuine worship of the worthy entails a firm conviction in the path to salvation exemplified by JIN - the victors of inner enemies.  A spirited appreciation of the attributes of the PANCH PARAMESHTHI (five supreme benevolent personalities) constitutes worship of the worthy.  ...  Shedding the feelings of attachment and aversion is worship.  Further, renouncing attachment and ego, while offering appropriate materials comprises the worship of the worthy.

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An Interview:

An interesting conversation between two insightful writers of recent times:

Non-possessiveness: The Starting Point Of Nonviolence

Conversation Between Jainendra Kumar and Dr. Nemi Chand Jain

Our endeavor to get any result is observed to end in success at times and in failure at other times.  When we fail, we are disappointed and frustrated on account of greed.  Remember, the outcome of one's endeavor  - success or failure follows market routine.  When one does not obtain the desired fruit in spite of dogged effort, conflict ensues.  Desires and circumstances are in discord.  Nonviolence cannot exist in such situations.  Nonviolence can be fostered only when we have wholesome contentment and dedication to duty.

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A Moral Story

A story by the literary giant, Munshi Prem Chand, describing the unscrupulous schemes adopted by religious fundamentalists:

A Veritable Religious Man

by Munshi Prem Chand

The city was large - tall buildings, wide roads, expansive markets, temples and mosques.  There was no mosque or temple in the village.  The Muslims would gather in a small square to pray and the Hindus offered water at the roots of a tree.  Jamid had great respect for religion, more than for any worldly material.

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Our concept of reality   with the progression of our knowledge, observation and experience.

How Jainism Relates To Modern Science

by Duli Chandra Jain

The rational perception, rational knowledge and rational conduct, collectively known as the three jewels of Jainism (RATNATRAYA), can be compared to the scientific process.

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Questions & Answers:

One may question: If everybody followed the Jain teaching of non-possessiveness (APARIGRAH), how could modern science and technology develop?

Jain Teachings: In The Context of Modern Times

by Duli Chandra Jain & Sunita Jain

As Jainism supports the concept of freedom of all individuals, it also supports the ideal of the prosperity of all individuals of the world.  It does not prevent us from making progress in the fields of science and technology for the benefit of all people of the world.

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Observations & Views:

Many Jain acharyas and scholars imply, contrary to the Jain concept of rationalism, that whatever is written in the Jain religious books and all the concepts presented in their discourses and lectures represent the absolute truth.  On the other hand, Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and Dr. Manmohan Singh realized that 'Jainism represents the highest flight of logic' and has 'the tradition of taking nothing for granted'.  Our readers are expected to enjoy such thought-provoking concepts presented in the column 'Observations & Views'. 

Jainism In The Eyes of Some Distinguished Luminaries

Vegetarianism And Planet Earth

Religious Tolerance: A Rational Discussion

Genuine Practice Of Nonviolence

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