Abstract Thinking: [20.07] - Anupreksha Of Truth - Two Aspects Of Truth - Existentialism And Utilitarianism

Published: 19.04.2007
Updated: 06.10.2008

Lord Mahavira was a veetaraaga; he had a direct experience of truth. What he said was not based on anything he heard or read, but was the outcome of his own direct experience of truth. Therefore his words naturally came to us as a revelation of truth and of self-realization.

Whatever is true is not without utility, but some parts of truth are especially useful. We live in a world, which is constantly changing. We are not therefore only existentialists but utilitarians, too. Truth is not for us merely a realistic point-of-view; it is the very achievement of the real.

There is a soul in every man and each soul is God - these both constitute an existentialist or realistic point-of-view. The spiritual endeavour to turn one's soul into God may be said to constitute utilitarianism.

  • From the existentialist point of view, Lord Mahavira said - "The soul is true and the non-soul is also true."
  • From the utilitarian point-of-view, Lord Mahavira said - "The soul alone has reality; the rest is illusion."
The first is a dualistic view-point; the second monistic. Lord Mahavira exhorts us to view truth from infinite points-of-view. From the non-absolutist point-of-view, dualism is as much tolerable as monism. He looked upon both monism and dualism as two aspects of the same truth.
Sources
  • Abstract Thinking
    by Acharya Mahaprajna, © 1988
  • Edited by  Muni Dulheraj
  • Translated by Muni Mahendra Kumar
  • Published by Jain Vishva Barati
  • Edition 1999 compiled by Samani Stith Pragya

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  1. Mahavira
  2. Monism
  3. Soul
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