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Jain Biology: Contents Of Jain Scriptures - A Summary

A question might be raised as to why Biology should be discussed so exhaustively in the Jain scriptures which are mainly concerned with spiritual aspects of life. The answer is given in the first verse of the 6th chapter of Uttarādhyayana "...... the ascetic has undertaken to observe the great vow of non-violence (ahiṃsā), and for the proper fulfillment of this difficult vow he must possess precise knowledge of what is animate and what is inanimate." Besides the celebrated aphorism of Bhagavan Mahavira, "padhamaṃ nāṇaṃ tao dayā"[1] also emphasizes that spiritual discipline must be preceded by knowledge (of the science of living organisms)."

The subject of Biology has been dealt with in great details in the following Jain scriptures:

  1. Prajñāpanā Sūtra, Chapter 1
  2. Uttarādhyayana Sūtra, Chapter 36
  3. Jīvājīvābhigam Sūtra, Chapter 1
  4. Sutrakṛtāṅga Sūtra, part II, Chapter 3

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Edited by:
Prof. Muni Mahendra Kumar

Ladnun-341 306 (Rajasthan, India)

First Edition: 2008 Printed at: Shree Vardhman Press, Naveen Shahdara, Delhi- 110032

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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Ahiṃsā
  2. Discipline
  3. Mahavira
  4. Non-violence
  5. Science
  6. Science Of Living
  7. Sūtra
  8. Uttarādhyayana
  9. Uttarādhyayana Sūtra
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