Video ►The Logic of Legitimation of Jain Lay Life in Sūyagaḍaṃga 2.2 and the Uvavāiya

Author:  Image of Andrew MoreAndrew More
Published: 16.04.2013
Updated: 02.07.2015

15th Jaina Studies Workshop

Date: 22 March 2013 Time: 9:00 AM
Finished: 22 March 2013 Time: 5:00 PM
Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre



This paper discusses the logic of argumentation in passages relating to the laity in Sūyagaḍaṃga 2.2 as well as in the section on the hierarchy of beings at the end of the Uvavāiya. In Sūyagaḍaṃga 2.2 the compiler has creatively reworked a passage that juxtaposed the praiseworthy conduct of the Jain ascetic with the censured behavior of everyone else. He creates an intermediate category, occupied by the lay Jain, that is spoken of in a positive light. The virtue of the lay Jain resides in the ability to approximate the conduct of a monastic, at least temporarily. Legitimating lay life in this manner is inconsistent with the attacks on non-Jain mendicants that also occur in Sūyagaḍaṃga 2.2. Non-Jain renunciants can also behave like Jain monastics, and it is not clear why one group of those who are sometimes similar to Jain monastics, the Jain laity, is praised, while another, the non-Jain renunciants, is criticized.

I argue that the compiler of the Uvavāiya has copied the passages on the layman from Sūyagadamga 2.2. The compiler of the Uvavāiya avoids the inconsistency seen in Sūyagadamga 2.2 by not engaging in the condemnation of all non-Jain ascetics.


Jaina Studies Workshop At SOAS
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