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The Enigma Of The Universe : Some Important Concepts of Jain Philosophy

Published: 05.08.2014
Updated: 02.07.2015

During the discussion on the main topic of the universe, the reader will come across many other important Jain concepts, referred to incidentally, and discussed only briefly. They are important from the point of view of making comparative studies of Jain philosophy and modern science.

One of such concepts is the doctrine of soul as described very elaborately in the Jain philosophy. In the present work, I have only discussed it in the context of scientific epistemology. It is required to deliberate over it also in the context of psychology, parapsychology, biology etc.

Another such concept is the doctrine of 'atom' in Jain philo-sophy. One would find an extensive exposition of this doctrine in theJain canonical as well as post-canonical works, which is very important for comparison with the views of ancient Greek philosophers as well as modern physics.[1]

At one place in the present book, I have referred to the work done by Sir C. V. Raman,[2] one of the most eminent Indian physicists, on the phenomenon of colour. The way in which the phenomenon of colour is explained in the Jain philosophy is amply substantiated by the Raman's Theory of Colour. The views of the idealists like Sir Arthur Eddington require modification in the light of Raman's Theory as well as the metaphysical aspect of Jain philosophy.[3]

One of the most important doctrines of the Jain philosophy is Anekāntavāda (non-absolutism). In the present work, I have only made a passing remark on it where its reference is found relevent. (See, supra, pp. 169-170). But, its thorough exposition in context of not only metaphysics and epistemology & logic is worth undertaking but also in context of many other disciplines, it requires proper presentation. For example, the modern statistical theory is one of such disciplines. One of the most eminent Indian statisticians, Prof. P. C. Mahalnobis, F. R. S., and Director, Indian Institute of Statistics, has gone to the extent of asserting, "For reasons explained above, it seems to me that the ancient Indian Jaina philosophy has certain interesting resemblances to the probabilistic and statistical view of reality in modern time."[4]

Again he maintains, "At thame time it is of interest to note that 1500 to 2500 years ago Syādvāda[5] seems to have given the logical background of statistical theory in qualitative form."[6]

In his extensive exposition of the subject, he has shown how the theories of Syādvāda, Anekāntavāda, Saptabhañgī (sevenfold predicatibn), Pariṇāmīnityatvavāda (theory of persistence through modes)[7] etc., propounded by the Jain philosophy, form the logical foundation of the modern statistical concepts of Theory of Probability, Concepts of An Individual in Relation to the Population, Association, Corelation & Concomitant Variation, Stochastic Process, Concept of Uncertain Inference etc..[8]


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Title: The Enigma Of The Universe Publisher: JVB University Ladnun English Edition: 2010 HN4U Online Edition: 2014

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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Anekāntavāda
  2. Eddington
  3. JAINA
  4. Jain Philosophy
  5. Jaina
  6. Non-absolutism
  7. Science
  8. Soul
  9. Syādvāda
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