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Jain Legend : Jain Dharma ka Maulika Itihasa (2): Discourse-ācārya Ārya Maṃgu

Published: 20.05.2016

Group-ācārya: It seems that during the tenure of Ārya Samudra, the group-ācārya of the lineage of Ārya Suhastīwas Ārya Dinna only.

The Royal dynasties during the time of Ārya Samudra

During the tenure of Ārya Samudra as discourse-ācārya, the Śṛṃga dynasty in Pāṭalīputra, the Nabhovāhana and later Gardhibhila dynasty in Ujjain and King Śisuka, the founder of Sātavāhana dynasty in Pratiṣṭhānapura, were in power.

During this period Yajṅas, sacrifices, Vedic rituals and culture gained good momentum in India.

36th Discourse-ācārya Ārya Maṃgu

Ācārya Samudra, introduced in the earlier chapters, was a man free from passions and completely detached. Whatever he received in alms, be it tasty or insipid, he would mix everything and unaffected by its taste, have it in an unperturbed manner. He would always deliberate that the soul may be bound in the cycle of karma because of the enticement of the senses and attachment towards the body.

It is because of this triumph over taste and his detachment towards gains, that he was eulogised by Ācārya Devārdhi as "Akkhubbhiya Samuddhagaṃbhīraṃ". Ārya Maṃgu was the disciple of this very Ārya Samudra. After the heavenly abode of Ācārya Samudra, his disciple, Ārya Maṃgu was designated as the discourse-ācārya in V.N. 454. He was wise, insightful and a strong propagator of the true philosophy (Samyaga darśana). To all the devoted disciples, he would explain the Sūtras with dexterity; and through his discourses on righteousness, awakening thousands of devotees he performed outstanding services to the Jain order.

According to the Niśītha Bhāṣya and Cūrṇi, Ārya Maṃgu was a scholar of all the scriptures and had a large number of disciples; he would always continue his wanderings, without getting attached to and staying at one place for long. Once, while wandering as usual, Ācārya Maṃgu arrived at Mathura and with his mellifluous and appealing preaching filled with detachment, he started enlightening the citizens there. Influenced by his knowledge and preaching filled with detachment, the faithful devotees venerated him with clothes etc. Every day they would offer him delicious foods like milk, curd, ghee, jaggery etc. Soon ācārya developed delusion and immersed in comforts and pleasures, settled in Mathura itself. The other monks proceeded further leaving him behind.

Unhealthy tendencies are ever ready like a temptress looking for a susceptible moment. At the slightest vulnerability in one's self-restraint, it sneaks in and exerts its power, immediately.

As he settled at one place, all his penance, self-restraint and spiritual endeavours had come to a standstill. The treasure of his character diminished and his attachment towards riches, taste, pleasure and honour increased. With the devotees offering appetising food and providing loving services, he deserted the extensive wandering and started living there like a lazy person. In the end, he died without even repenting about his culpable conduct and without abandoning his careless attitude. Since he violated the principles of ascetic life, he was born in a demigod (Yakṣa) family. With his cognition, when he became aware of his previous birth, he started repenting, "Alas! In spite of possessing a great treasure like Jain religion, which is attained by virtues of previous birth, and which is capable of destroying miseries forever, because of my foolishness, I wasted my life. It is fittingly said, 'Even an expert in the fourteen Pūrvas, can, by negligence of his principles be born into 'Anantkaya' (a body containing countless living beings). So saying, he used to repent sincerely for the mistakes of his past life.

Once he saw the disciples of his previous birth. Taking out his long tongue and in a strange appearance he stood in their way in order to teach them. Looking at the Yakṣa, a righteous disciple said, "O Divine one!, Whether you are a deity, a demigod or someone else, please reveal yourself and speak; if not, we are not at all able to understand any of your intention".

The Yakṣa sadly said, "O monks! I am your very same teacher, Ārya Maṃgu".

The monks also felt sorry and replied, "Lord! How did you get into this unfortunate situation?"

The Yakṣa told, "If one gets carried away by the delusive pleasures, slackens his character, then he would end up like me. What is so shocking if an unprincipled person like me who honours wealth, taste and pleasure ends up here? If you want to save yourselves from such misfortune and move ahead towards salvation, then abandoning careless attitude, being devoid of passions, and maintaining temperance, always keep wandering as a monk without getting attached to any place or thing."

The monks said, "O Divine one! You have rightly enlightened us!" Having said this, they took to penance and also started observing self-restraint and continued their travel as monks without getting attached to any one place.

In the Sthavirāvalī of  NandiSūtra, Ācārya Devavācaka honouring Ārya Maṃgu using adjectives like - "Bhaṇagaṃ" to describe one who recites the Kālika Sūtras, etc., "Karagaṃ" to denote one who performs deeds as prescribed by the Sūtras and "Jharagaṃ" to represent one who follows Dharma - described him as a Transcendental ācārya of the ocean of scriptures. The term he used "Pabhāvagaṃ nāṇadaṃsaṇaguṇāṇaṃ" indicates that Ārya Maṃgu is a strong propagator of the right knowledge and philosophy. Ācārya Devavācaka further wrote, "Salutations to Ārya Maṃgu, the divine ācārya of the ocean of scriptures, and the one who is calm and composed!"

According to the commentary 'Jayadhavalā' of "Kasāya-Pāhuḍa", the authentic scripture of the Digambara tradition, Ārya Maṃkṣu and Ārya Nāgahasti were considered to be the teachers of Ācārya Yativṛṣabha, the commentator of Kasāya-Pāhuḍa. In the words of the commentator of Jayadhavalā, Ācārya Yativṛṣabha received the divine ray of knowledge from his teachers, Ācārya Maṃkṣu and Ācārya Nāgahasti.

After Ārya Maṃgu of Vācaka tradition, Ārya Dharma, Ārya Bhadragupta, Ārya Vajra and Ārya Rakṣita - these four epochal-ācāryas were described as discourse- ācārya also.

Out of these four epochal-ācāryas, Ārya Vajra was undoubtedly from the line of Ācārya Suhastī, however, no clear evidence is available on whether the other three ācāryas were of the lineage of Ārya Mahāgiri or Suhastī.

From the citations of various old scriptures and from the chronology of "epochal-ācārya", it is implicitly evident that all these four ācāryas were the most influential persons of the era and were highly proficient in the canons. Owing to their extreme versatility, they were considered as epochal-ācāryas and discourse - ācārya too.

From the above, it is evident that the three ācāryas - Ārya Maṃgu, Ārya Nandi and Ārya Nāgahasti had long span of lives and during their tenure as discourse- ācārya, the aforesaid four epochal-ācāryas, even though they did not belong to the Vācaka lineage were still considered as Scholar-preceptor, because of their own brilliance and in-depth knowledge of the canonical scriptures.

Considering all the above facts, these four ācāryas are being mentioned in epochal-ācārya lineage and not in discourse-ācārya lineage.

15th epochal-ācārya 'Ārya Dharma'

After Ārya Revatimitra, Ārya Dharma became epochal-ācārya in V.N. 450. He took initiation at the age of 18. He followed the Śramaṇa Dharma for 40 years and later became an epochal-ācārya. Being in the position of an epochal-ācārya for 44 years he did remarkable services to the Jain Order. Living a complete life of 102 years, 5 months and 5 days, he left for his heavenly abode in V.N. 494.

Group-ācārya (gaṇa- ācārya) Ārya Siṃhagiri

In Ārya Suhastī's lineage, after Ārya Dinna, Ārya Siṃhagiri became the group-ācārya. The only information available about him is that he was an exceptionally brilliant & impressive ācārya also having knowledge of past-lives. According to Khuśāla Paṭṭāvalī he left for heavenly abode in V.N. 547-548. Ārya Vajra was born in V.N. 496 and much before that Ārya Samita had taken initiation from Ārya Siṃhagiri, from which it can be inferred that Ārya Siṃhagiri should have been a ācārya during V.N. 490. Out of his vast family of disciples, only the names of his four main disciples, Ārya Samita, Ārya Dhanagiri, Ārya Vajra and Ārya Arahdatta are available. They are being introduced hereunder.

Ārya Samita

Ārya Samita was born in a village named Tumbavana, of the most prosperous Avantī Pradeśa. His father's name was Dhanapāla, a renowned merchant. Belonging to Vaiśya community and Gautama Gotra, he figured as one of the prominent millionaires of that time. Other than Ārya Samita, Dhanapāla had a daughter also, by name Sunaṃdā.

Merchant Dhanapāla made appropriate arrangements for the education of his promising son. Right from his childhood Ārya Samita lived like a detached person. He never had the slightest interest in worldly pleasures.

As soon as Samita entered adolescence, he renounced all the wealth, grandeur and all exuberant means of enjoyment and took initiation from Ācārya Siṃhagiri.

Samita had a close friend, Dhanagiri, the son of another wealthy merchant Dhana, of the same Tumbavana village. After his son Samita took to renunciation, Dhanapāla proposed to his friend Dhanagiri to marry his daughter Sunandā. Even though Dhanagiri was reluctant to mundane pleasures, under the continuous pressure and persuasion of his friend's father, he finally married Sunandā. Ārya Samita's sister, Sunandā later gave birth to the glorious and powerful Ācārya Vajra.

After initiation, Ārya Samita, serving his Guru, systematically studied the scriptures with great concentration. He also became an expert in the science of spell and incantation. During those days, close to Acalapura, which was surrounded by the rivers Kṛṣṇā and Veṇā, there was a convent (āśrama) with 500 non-Jain ascetics living in it. The name of their chief was Devaśarma. As the convent was surrounded by two rivers, it was popular by the name of Brhmadwīpaka. On the eve of festivals like Saṃkrānti, etc., in order to propagate his faith, Devaśarma along with all his disciples, used to smear a special type of lotion to their feet and walk on the waters of the Kṛṣṅā River and reach Acalapura. The innocent and sentimental laymen, fascinated by such miraculous and marvelous scene, would pay their respects to those ascetics by offering them various foods and services. The devotees of those ascetics, with great pride, would praise their teacher in front of the Votaries (Jain laymen) and ask them, "Do any of your teachers have such miraculous power?" Seeing the Votaries fall silent to their question, they would become all the more enthusiastic and boast further, "There is no such magical power or greatness either in your religion or in your Gurus that equals the austerities practised or the miracles performed by our Guru. In fact, our Guru is God incarnate. With face bowed, bow in front of him with devotion."

The sarcastic words of the devotees of the ascetics hurt the feelings of the Votaries. At that time, Ārya Samita Sūri, the disciple of Ārya Siṃhagiri and the maternal uncle of Ārya Vajra arrived at Acalapura. The group of Votaries venerated Ārya Samita and later narrated the incidence about the ascetics walking on the river waters as if they were walking on the ground. Ārya Samita was silent for a few moments. The Votaries pleaded again, "Lord! The influence of Jain religion on the common man is deteriorating. We request you to please come out with an idea by which the Jain Dharma can impress the people more."

Ārya Samita Sūri replied with a smile, "It is not because of the austerities that those ascetics are walking on the water, but because of the effect of the lotion that they are applying to their feet. They are unnecessarily fooling the innocent people"

The votaries were determined to prove that the supernatural illusion created by those ascetics is not exceptional and so they invited all the saints including their chief for a feast. The next day when all the ascetics arrived for the feast, the votaries started washing the feet of the saints with warm water. The Chief of the ascetics tried to prevent the votaries from washing their feet, but they did not listen to him. "We would acquire great sin, if we offer food without washing the lotus feet of great people like you" - thus saying, the votaries in a seemingly devout manner scrubbed and washed the feet of all the ascetics.

After the feast, the ascetics set out towards their convent. On the pretext of seeing them off with honour, the votaries had already mobilised thousands of men and women. A large crowd accompanied the ascetics with great applause.

Reaching the bank of the river Veṇā, all the ascetics including their chief were hesitant. They had a grave problem facing them. On one hand, there was fear of drowning and on the other there was fear of losing their hard-earned fame. The chief of the ascetics, thinking that the lotion must definitely have some effect left, stepped into the water of the river Veṇā. The waters of Veṇā were flowing rapidly and as such the lotion of his feet was already thoroughly washed with the warm water. Hence, the chief of the ascetics started drowning due to the depth and turbulent flow of Veṇā.

Just then Ārya Sumita Sūri came to the bank of Veṇāand seeing the chief drowning in it said, "O Veṇā! I want a path to go to the other bank". To the astonishment of the crowd, the water in the river shrunk at once and both banks of the river appeared close to each other. In one leap Ārya Samita reached the other bank of Veṇā. All the men and women present there including the ascetics, were very impressed by the unparalleled inner - power of Ārya Samita Sūri. Explaining everyone the real form of Dharma, he motivated the people to do good deeds to uplift one self and others'. Listening to the sermons which touched the depth of the heart, the Chief of the ascetics along with his 499 disciples took 'Nirgraṃthaśramaṇa' initiation (one who has no room for wrath, pride, wickedness, greed, sexual thoughts). As these 500 Śramaṇas were earlier staying in Brhmadwīpaka convent, after initiation into the Śramaṇa Dharma, they became famous as the "Brhamdwīpika gaccha".

Ārya Samita was the greatest proponent of Jainism of his times. He not only Strived for the accomplishment of the tremendous vitality of his soul, but also showed the path of spiritual-exertion to the seekers of salvation and thus offered unparalleled service to the Jain Order.

Ārya Dhanagiri

Ārya Dhanagiri, the second prominent disciple of Ārya Siṃhagiri, left his bountiful riches and his chaste, loyal, pregnant wife in his prime youth and set such an ardent example of detachment and renunciation that it is impossible to find elsewhere. He will be discussed in detail alongside Ārya Vajra.

Ārya Arahadatta

No relevant data is available about Ārya Arahadatta.

Important dynasties during the tenure of Ārya Maṃgu

During the tenure of Ārya Maṃgu as discourse-ācārya  (i.e. V.N. 470 or 57 BC or 135 years before Śaka era) the throne of the Republic of Avantī was adorned by the most chivalrous and benevolent king Vikramāditya. The very same day when Vikramāditya ascended the throne of Ujjaini, a new calendar came into existence in his name in the Kingdom of Avantī; and about 17 or 13 years later, it was followed by the entire country, which was also referred to as Kṛta Year, Mālawa Year and Vikram Year one after another.

As per a few Jain scriptures, a brief note on the life of Vikramāditya is as follows:

A king named Gardabhilla was ruling the city of Avantī of Mālawa Pradeśa righteously. He had two sons, Bhṛtrahari by his first wife Dhīmatī, and then Vikram by his second wife Śrīmatī.

Both the princes gradually reached adolescence. Gardabhilla married his eldest son Bhartṛhari to Princess Aṃgasenā, the daughter of Rājā Bhīma. After that Gardabhilla conquered several countries and established his sovereignty over them.

In course of time Rājā Gardabhilla died due to acute abdominal pain and the ministers crowned Bhartṛhari as their king.

One day, insulted by his elder brother Bhartṛhari, the offended Vikramāditya left Avantī kingdom, all alone, taking his sword.

Thus the elder brother Bhartṛhari was ruling the Avantī kingdom while his younger brother Vikramāditya was wandering from place to place.

After giving the aforesaid information about Vikramāditya's parents and brother, etc, Subhaśīlagaṇī quoted the most popular verse, "yāṃ cintayāmi satataṃ mayi sā viraktā" and narrated the episode of the fruit of immortality (amaraphala), in which a Brahmin acquires an amaraphala and offers it to the king Bhartṛhari, who in turn gives to his queen; the queen gives it to the hunch-back charioteer, the charioteer to the courtesan and from courtesan it once again reaches king Bhartṛhari. It was also mentioned that when Bhartṛhari came to know the reality, he became a monk and retired to the forest and thus Vikramāditya became the king of Ujjaini.

Himavanta chronology of elders (Sthavirāvalī) and Vikramāditya

It was mentioned in "Himavanta Sthavirāvalī" that Vikramāditya belongs to the Maurya Dynasty. According to this Sthavirāvalī, at that time, in Avantī, King Samprati died heirless, and so Aśoka's grandsons and Tiṣyagupta's sons Princes Balamitra & Bhānumitra ascended the throne of Avantī. (These two brothers are not to be mistaken for Balamitra and Bhānumitra, the kings of Bhṛgukaccha and the nephews of Ārya Kālaka). Their regime was between 353 and 413 V.N., whereas that of the Balamita-Bhānumitra of Bhaḍauṃca was after 454 V.N.)

Both the brothers were staunch devotees of Jain Dharma. After their demise, Balamitra's son Nabhovāhana became the king of Avantī. Nabhovāhana was also the follower of Jain Dharma. After his death, his son Gardabhilla became the king.

Gardabhilla forcibly abducted Sarasvatī, the lady ascetic and the sister of Kālakācārya and imprisoned her in his palace. Despite all means of persuasion Gardabhilla did not set her free. Eventually, as Kālakācārya was left with no alternative, made the combined forces of his brothers-inlaw, Balamitra and Bhanūmitra, the ruler of (ruled the kingdom one at a time, in turns) Bhṛgukaccha and the Śaka kings of Sinṃdhu region attack against Ujjaini. In the ensuing forceful battle Gardabhilla was killed. Ārya Kālaka once again initiated his sister Sarasvatī into the holy path of ascetism, he himself underwent suitable contrition and engrossed in the practice of self-restraint.

After the death of Gardabhilla, Ujjaini was captured by the Śakas. At that time, his younger son Vikramāditya neither had an organised army nor After the death of Gardabhilla, Ujjaini was captured by the Śakas. At that time, his younger son Vikramāditya neither had an organised army nor

Almost in all the Jain scriptures, it is mentioned that Vikramāditya was a follower of Jain Dharma.

17th Discourse-ācārya Ārya Nandila (Ānandila)

Ārya Nandila became the Discourse-ācārya after Ārya Maṃgu, in the lineage of Vācakas. According to Prabhāvaka Caritra, he was known to be the spiritual Guru of Vairoṭyā Devī. Ācārya Nandila helped Vairoṭyā Devī gain peace in her distressed life through his discourses. After she became the queen of Dharaṇendra, she continued her devotion and respect towards Ācārya Nandila. From time to time, she used to help the ardent devotees of Lord Parśvanātha by helping them to solve their problems.

In praise of Vairoṭyā Devī, Ācārya Nandila wrote an inscription with a mantra "Namiuṇa jiṇaṃpāsaṃ" which made her name immemorial.

16th Epochal-ācārya Ārya Bhadragupta

Ārya Bhadragupta presided over the congregation as the epochal-ācārya after the heavenly abode of Ārya Dharma in V.N. 494. Ārya Bhadragupta was proficient in the ten Pūrvas, the canonical scriptures, and was an outstanding scholar. He was fortunate enough to be the teacher of the great epochal-ācārya Vajra Swāmī. Vajra Swāmī had attained the knowledge of the ten Pūrvas from him.

Birth V.N. 428
Initiation V.N. 449
Became ācārya V.N. 494
Heavenly abode V.N. 533
Household life duration 21 years
Ordinary Monk tenure 45 years
Tenure as ācārya 39 years
Total longevity 105 years 4 months 4 days

His last spiritual-exertion (Niryāmaṇā) was guided by Ārya Rakṣita Sūri.

Chief preceptor of a group (group-ācārya)

In V.N. 547 – 48, Ārya Siṃhagiri, the group-ācārya of Ārya Suhastī tradition, left for the heavenly abode when Ārya Nandila was the discourse-ācārya.

18th Scholar-preceptor (Discourse-ācārya) Nāgahasti

Nāgahasti became the Discourse-ācārya after Ācārya Ārya Nandila. Ācārya Devārdhigaṇī Kṣamāśramaṇa in his Nandisūtra Sthavirāvalī described him as the foremost erudite of Karma philosophy and an able ācārya who provided appropriate and satisfactory answers to the queries of the inquisitive. As he was gifted with 'Pūrvajṅāna', he was considered an expert in expositions of meataphysics and karma. Out of his disciples, Ārya Pādalipta was a very dynamic ācārya, whose introduction is briefly given here.

Ārya Pādalipta

Like Ārya Khaputa, Ārya Pādalipta is also considered a very influential ācārya. There was an intelligent and generous merchant named Fūlla in Kośalā, during the regime of King Vijayavarmā. His wife was Pratimānā. Though she was extremely beautiful, modest and virtuous, she was not blessed with a son. On the advice of someone, she worshipped goddess Vairoṭyā Devī and begot a son. He was named as Nagendra.

Believing the child to be the blessing of the Guru, Pratimānā brought him up with great love and care for eight years and then surrendered him at her Guru's feet. The teacher initiated him and arranged for his education under the guidance of an ascetic named Maṇḍana. As he was extremely intelligent, Nagendra excelled in learning all the subjects in a very short time. Pleased with his service, his Guru taught him Pādalepa Vidyā (knowledge of the ointment for feet to achieve miraculous powers). Hence he became popular as Pādalipta.

This is an incident that happened during the reign of the king Muruṇḍa of Pāṭalīputra. He was suffering from unbearable headache for six months. Incidentally, after taking over the responsibility of the congregation as ācārya, Pādalipta visited Pāṭalīputra. By that time the king in spite of being treated by several methods (tantra, mantra and medicines, etc) did not find any relief. The king sent his minister to Ācārya Pādalipta and appealed to provide him with a remedy for his chronic headache. Therefore, ācāryaśrī went to the palace and with the power of his mantra, completely cured the king of his headache.

Getting relieved of his headache, the delighted king, put ācāryaśrī through few tests and after that became his ardent devotee.

There are many astounding incidents in Jain literature describing the outstanding abilities of Ācārya Pādalipta. Some of the books mention that he would apply a lotion made of various medicines to his feet and travel in space.

It seems that he travelled far and wide. King Kṛṣṇa of Mānyakheṭa, King Bhīma of Oṃkārapura and many other kings and emperors were his followers. He demonstrated his outstanding skills in Pāṭalīputra, Bhṛgukacchapura and in other places and eliminated opposition created by people of other faiths against Jains and many people became followers of Jainism.

During the tenure of Ārya Nagahasti as the discourse-ācārya, there were three epochal-ācāryas - Ārya Śrīgupta, Vajra and Rakṣita, who are discussed hereunder.

17th Epochal-ācārya Ārya Śrīgupta
(533 To 548 V.N.)

After Ārya Bhadragupta left for his heavenly abode, Ārya Śrīgupta led the Congregation as epochal-ācārya. The only available information about him is:

Birth V.N. 448
Initiation V.N. 483
Became ācārya V.N. 533
Heavenly abode V.N. 548
Household life duration 35 years
Ordinary Monk tenure 50 years
Tenure as ācārya 15 years
Total longevity 100 years 7 months 7 days

The sixth non-believer Ārya Rohagupta was his disciple-monk.

The Sixth Heretic- Ārya Rohgupta

In V.N. 544 Rohagupta propounded the doctrine of Trirāśika (three types of existents rather than two as living and non-living beings descrined in Jainism). As he propounded differently than Lord Mahāvīra, so, he is considered a heretic. How this belief came into existence is described in the following way:

Once, a ācārya called Śrīgupta camped along with his disciples at the Bhūtaguhā garden on the outskirts of Aṃtaraṃjikā city. Balaśrī was the ruler of Aṃtaraṃjikā. Rohagupta, one of the very intelligent disciples of Ācārya Śrīgupta, came to Aṃtaraṃjikā from another village to be with his Guru. On the way he saw an ascetic holding a twig of a rose apple (Jambū) tree in his hand; he had an iron band around his waist, lest his stomach may burst open by the spate of his knowledge. As he wore an iron band around his waist, he became famous as Poṭṭasāla. The twig of rose apple tree in his hand probably implied that no one could defeat him in religious debate in the entire Jambūdwīpa. So he proclaiming at the beat of a drum, travelled from place to place, challenging the scholars to debate with him.

Rohagupta listened to the proclamation. He could not tolerate the vanity of the ascetic; so he went up to the herald and stopping him, declared, "I will participate in the debate on canonic knowledge with the ascetic". Later he went to his teacher, after offering humble salutations he confessed to him, "O Lord! I accepted the challenge of Poṭṭasāla ascetic to debate with him".

Ācārya Śrīgupt said, "You haven't done a prudent thing accepting his challenge. The ascetic possesses supernatural powers. Even if he is vanquished in the debate, he will try his best to defeat you with those powers".

Rohagupta humbly asked, "As I have already accepted the challenge, hence, please divulge some strategy to be triumphant."

Then Ācārya Śrīgupta imparted the Siddhamātra Vidyās and even gave his whiskbroom to him and said, "Despite these Vidyās if you face any problem, at once just whirl this whiskbroom. Then none can beat you".

Rohagupta thus equipped with the new powers and the whiskbroom, went to the Royal Court and said, "O Ascetic! Please begin your argument."

The ascetic thought, "These Śramaṇas are very tactful. Therefore I will commence with their doctrines as the base of my argument". So thinking he said, "The world is classified into two groups - Jīvas and Ajīvas" (Living beings & Non-living beings).

Rohagupta contradicting the statement said, "No, there are three groups, Jīva, Ajīva and No-jīva. Jīva means that which has life, Ajīva means lifeless objects like pot, cloth, etc., and No-jīva means that which possesses both the attributes of Jīva and Ajīva, like the severed tail of a lizard.

Three types of substances are visible in the world. Even the stick has three parts, the beginning, the end and the middle. There are three universes namely upper, middle and lower. Hence it is improper to say that there are only two groups in the world."

The ascetic got enraged with the logic of Rohagupta and tried to subdue him by his supernatural powers. One after the other he used Vṛścikī (scorpion), Sarpikī (snake), Mūṣikī (mouse), Kākī (crow) and Mṛgī (deer) powers against Rohagupta. Rohagupta made them ineffective by using Mayūrī (peacock), Nakulī (mongoose), Mārjārī (cat), Ulūkī (owl) and Vyāghrī (tiger) powers respectively.

Defeated even with the use of his supernatural powers, the ascetic unable to tolerate his trouncing became aggressive and finally used the power of "Surakṣita Gardabhī" against Rohagupta, who did not have any power to counter it. So he took out the whiskbroom given by his Guru and with that made the Gardabhī Vidyā ineffective and defeated him. The king announced Rohagupta as the victor. After defeating the ascetic, Rohagupta went back to his Guru and narrated the entire incident.

When the topic of three groups was told, Ācārya Śrīgupta said, "Son! Achieving victory by falsifying the scriptures is not advisable. As soon as the argument was over you should have informed the king that as per our doctrines there are only two groups - Jīva and Ajīva, and not three; and that you just wanted to rout the ascetic's intellect, because of which you put forth and proved your statement to be true with logical explanation and nothing else. In reality there are only two groups in the world. It is not too late. Go to the king at once and following the vow of truthfulness, confess the reality honestly."

Rohagupta did not heed the advice of his Guru. He kept silent and did not budge from his place. When time and again the teacher advised him to go to the Royal court, Rohagupta started arguing with him, and tried to prove his argument.

The teacher unable to accept the falsehood of his disciple right away went to the king's court and said, "O King! Whatever my disciple Rohagupta proved about three groups in your court is nothing but against the principles. As a matter of fact, there are only two groups. Kindly arrange for a discourse between my disciple and me, so as to establish the truth."

The king granted permission and the debate between the teacher and the disciple started and continued for six months, because of which the activities of the State got disturbed. So the king requested ācāryaśrī to conclude the argument soon. The next day, in order to end the debate which has been in progress for the last six months, Ācārya Śrīgupta asked the king in front of his courtiers, "O King! Each and every object of the world is available in the market. So please arrange to fetch Jīva, Ajīva and No-jīva objects from there."

Immediately the king's attendants went to the market and brought Jīva and Ajīva objects and informed that they could not get any No-jīva substance. The king gave his verdict, "There are only two types of entities namely Jīva and Ajīva in the world. There is no other group like "No-jīva". And hence I declare ācāryaśrī as the vanquisher of this discourse and Rohagupta as the vanquished." But Rohagupta did not let go of his obstinacy. Finally Ācārya Śrīgupta expelled him from the congregation. The King expelled Rohagupta from his Kingdom.

Sources

Title: Jain Legend: Jain Dharma ka Maulika Itihasa (2)
Author:
Acharya Hasti Mala
Editors:
Shugan C. Jain
Publisher: Samyakjnana Pracaraka Mandala, Jaipur
Edition: 2011
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Page glossary
Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Ajīva
  2. Bhāṣya
  3. Bhṛgukaccha
  4. Body
  5. Brahmin
  6. Caritra
  7. Concentration
  8. Cūrṇi
  9. Darśana
  10. Dharma
  11. Digambara
  12. Fear
  13. Gaccha
  14. Gautama
  15. Ghee
  16. Gotra
  17. Greed
  18. Guru
  19. Jain Dharma
  20. Jainism
  21. Jīva
  22. Karma
  23. Kālaka
  24. Kṛṣṇa
  25. Mahāvīra
  26. Mantra
  27. Mathura
  28. Niśītha
  29. Parśvanātha
  30. Pradeśa
  31. Pride
  32. Sarasvatī
  33. Science
  34. Soul
  35. Space
  36. Tantra
  37. Ujjain
  38. Vedic
  39. Vidyā
  40. Yakṣa
  41. Ācārya
  42. ācāryas
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