Samayasara - by Acharya Kundakunda: Even An Iota Of Affection (Towards Aliens) Vitiates The Enlightenment

paramāṇumettayaṃ pi hu rāgādῑṇaṃ tu vijjade jassa.
ṇa vi so jāṇadi appāṇayaṃ tu savvāgamadharo vi..

appāṇamayāṇaṃto aṇappayaṃ cāvi so ayāṇaṃto.
kiha hodi sammadiṭṭhῑ jῑvājῑve ayāṇaṃto..

(Hu jassa ragādῑṇaṃ tu paramāṇumettayaṃ pi vijjade) Truly speaking, if there exists even an atom of affection [towards aliens] (so tu savvāgamadharo vi) inspite of being well-versed in scriptures (appaṇayaṃ ṇa vi jāṇadi) one does not know his true self through direct/immediate experience.

(Appāṇayaṃ ayāṇaṃto) And if one does not [really] know the true self (so aṇappayaṃ cāvi ayāṇaṃto) one is incompetent to know the non-self also. And so (jῑvajῑve ayāṇaṃto kiha sammadiṭṭhῑ hodi) in the absence of knowledge of self as well as non-self, how can one be designated as enlightened—samyagdṛṣṭi?


Here the author gives a factual criterion of the truly Enlightend Soul—Samyagdṛṣṭi. Jain philosophy in general and the author in particular, frequently, eulogizes the enlightened soul—samyagdṛṣṭi. We have seen that the terms mithyādṛṣṭi and mithyādarśana are used to denote the beginningless infection of the soul resulting in perversion of its world-view. In course of time the inherent potency of the soul overcomes the contamination and leads the soul to right world-view and right path. The first awakening of the predilection for truth is called samyagdarśana and the soul who attains it is called samyagdṛṣṭi, which are opposite of mithyādarśana and mithyādṛṣṭi respectively. And this is what is meant by enlightenment.

But the path of spiritual advancement from the dawn of enlightenment to total annihilation of affection/attachment (rāga) for alien objects, is very long and arduous. The term Vῑtarāga stands for total freedom from attachment of any kind and is thus exclusively related to self and nothing else whatsoever. It is this vitarāga stage of enlightenment—samyagdṛṣṭi—which is so often referred to and eulogized in this treatise by the author. However the term enlightenment—samyagdṛṣṭi—is legitimately applicable to any stage from the first awakening to complete absence of affection/ attachment. And, therefore, the above verses clarify that a true samyagdṛṣṭi who is regarded free from the bondage of karma is vitarāga, totally free from attachment. Thus, in most verses in this book the term samyagdṛṣṭi is synonymous with the term vitarāga and the above verses are meant to dispel any misunderstanding in this regard.

The author discounts the superficial scholarship in terms of theoretical scriptural knowledge. The knowledge of scriptures is valid and purposeful only if it results in progressive freedom from attachment and ultimately to becoming vitarāga. Even an iota of attachment/affection may prevent the scholar from attaining the ability of apprehending his true Self through direct experience. To be regarded as true samyagdṛṣṭi one must transcend even the subtlemost attachment to non-self. Until then the enlightenment is imperfect and scholarship superficial.


Samayasara - by Acharya Kundakunda Publishers:
Jain Vishva Bharati University First Edition: 2009

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Page glossary
Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Jain Philosophy
  2. Karma
  3. Mithyādarśana
  4. Mithyādṛṣṭi
  5. Samyagdarśana
  6. Soul
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