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Bhagavan Mahavira Life and Philosophy : [04.14] Second Sermon: Eleven Theses (1)

Published: 22.08.2005
Updated: 06.08.2008

Chapter 4

Kaivalya (Omniscience) And The Bhagavan's Sermons

hagavan Mahavira delivered his second sermon in the Mahasena gardens of the city Madhyama Pavapuri on the eleventh day of the bright half of the lunar month of Vaisakha.

In this sermon, he propounded the reality of the human soul.

A Brahmana named Somila had organised a great sacrifice on that day. Many learned men came to participate in the sacrifice.

Indrabhuti Gautama was the chief among these learned Brahmanas. He was apprised of the presence of Bhagavan Mahavira there. The overweening Brahmana came to the Mahasena Gardens to defeat the Bhagavan in a debate.

Bhagavan Mahavira was omniscient. He knew the thoughts of Indrabhuti. Revealing what Indrabhuti was thinking, Bhagavan Mahavira said,

"Indrabhuti, you consider yourself a great scholar of the Vedic Scriptures,
still you are sceptical about the existence of the soul.
Isn't it so?"

Indrabhuti was stunned to hear this reading of his mind by the Bhagavan. By unveiling the doubt hidden in his mind, Bhagavan Mahavira at once won his veneration.

Enquiring rather in a submissive voice, Indrabhuti said,

"Does the soul exist?
How do you, Sir, assert its existence?"

The Bhagavan said,

"Yes, Gautama, the soul exists.
I have perceived it.
I assert its existence on the basis of my direct knowledge of the soul."

Indrabhuti said,

"Sir, I am a student of Logic.
Don't you explain the existence of the soul in terms of Logic?"

Bhagavan Mahavira replied,

"The soul is non-perceptible to senses.
The domain of Reason (or Logic) is limited only to those objects, which are perceptible to senses.
Where there is Direct Cognition, reason is rendered redundant".

And, here, indeed, a logician felt himself helpless before a Direct Perceiver. He submitted himself to the Bhagavan along with his five hundred followers. He became a disciple of Bhagavan Mahavira.

Agnibhuti, another learned Brahmana and participant in the Great Sacrifice, was wonder-struck when he heard the news of the conversion of Indrabhuti. He became so inquisitive as to pay a visit to Bhagavan Mahavira with all his disciples.

Bhagavan Mahavira took him unawares by remarking,

"Agnibhuti, you are sceptical about the existence of karma".

Agnibhuti was surprised to know how Bhagavan Mahavira could read his mind. He began to wonder whether Bhagavan Mahavira was a possessor of Direct Knowledge. He was attracted towards him as if by a magnetic force.

Bhagavan Mahavira then explained to him the nature of karma.

The soul attracts subtle atoms by the exertion of its own inherent force.
This attraction results in the atoms sticking to the soul.
This present action constitutes Spiritual exertion and the actions of the past constitute what is known as karma.

Agnibhuti's mind as if got immersed in the direct perception of Truth by Bhagavan Mahavira. He also became a disciple of Bhagavan Mahavira along with his own disciples.

Indrabhuti and Agnibhuti were followed then, one by one, by other scholars also, and were all converted.
Title: Bhagavan Mahavira Life and Philosophy
Translated & Edited: Muni Mahendra Kumar


Edition 1995
Publisher: Jain Vishva Bharati, Ladnun, India

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Page glossary
Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Agnibhuti
  2. Gautama
  3. Indrabhuti
  4. Kaivalya
  5. Karma
  6. Mahavira
  7. Omniscient
  8. Pavapuri
  9. Soul
  10. Vedic
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