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Samayasara - by Acharya Kundakunda: Delusion And Affection Are The Ultimate Causes Of Bondage

esā du jā madῑ de dukkhidasuhide karemi satte tti.
esā de mūḍhamadῑ suhāsuhaṃ baṃdhade kammaṃ..

dukkhidasuhide satte karemi jaṃ evamajjhavasidam te.
taṃ pāvabaṃdhagaṃ vā puṇṇassa va baṃdhagaṃ hodi..

māremi jῑvavemi ya satte jaṃ evamajjhavasidaṃ te.
 taṃ pāvabaṃdhagaṃ vā puṇṇassa va baṃdhagaṃ hodi..

(De esā du jā madῑ satte dukkhida-suhide karemi tti) Your conviction that you can make other organisms happy or miserable (esā de mūḍhamadῑ suhāsuhaṃ kammaṃ baṃdhade) is a delusion which is the cause of bondage of auspicious and inauspicious karma.

(Satte dukkhida-suhide karemi) "I am making other organisms happy or miserable"-(jaṃ evaṃ te ajjhavasidaṃ) such dispositions are your affective feelings, (taṃ pāvabaṃdhagaṃ vā paṇṇassa bandhagaṃ hodi) and they [these feelings] become the causes of bondage of inauspicious as well as auspicious karma.

(Satte māremi ya jῑvavemi) "I am killing or saving other organisms"—(jaṃ evaṃ te ajjhavasidaṃ) such dispositions are your affective feelings; (taṃ pāvabandhagaṃ puṇṇassa bandhagaṃ hodi) and they [these feelings] become the causes of the bondage of inauspicious [pāpa] as well as auspicious [puṇya] karma.


In these verses, nos. 8.11 to 8.25, the author continues the discussion on the ultimate cause of bondage of karma, initiated in the preceding verses, from another angle. In the cauldron of worldly hotchpotch, one often kills others and is killed by others; or saves others and is saved by others. In popular parlance killing is an immoral/sinful act. Conversely 'saving' is a moral/virtuous act. This is in accordance with the empirical (vyavahāra) aspect. From the transcendental aspect, however, life-span-determining (āyuṣya karma) is the sole determinant of life and death of every living organism. Āyuṣya, itself, is again, determined by each soul for itself and nobody can interfere or alter it. So from this aspect nobody can 'kill' or 'save' since nobody can alter the āyuṣya karma[1].

Similarly, in the worldly life our inherent selfishness and greed results in inflicting injuries and miseries on those whom we exploit. On the other hand, we also possess streaks of altruism and cooperation and we take pride in protecting and providing worldly comforts not only to our kith and kin but also to other fellowmen. In popular parlance, again, it is said that those who exploit and oppress others are the causes for the unhappiness and the miseries suffered by the exploitation. Conversely, altruism is the cause of making our fellowmen happy and comfortable. All this is entirely in keeping with the empirical aspect (vyavahāra naya). But again, from the transcendental aspect the sole determinant of one's misery is the rise and fruition of one's own inauspicious karma. So from this aspect, since nobody can give or take away from the fruition of karma, nobody can cause suffering to others. In the same way the rise and fruition of auspicious karma is the sole determinant of one's pleasures and worldly happiness. So from this point of view, altruism has no ultimate value, since it cannot provide karma or karmaphala for worldly happiness.

In all the above cases, killing, saving, inflicting miseries or providing comforts-distinction is made between the substantive or primary (Upādāna) cause and external or secondary (nimitta) cause. For instance in the case of saving, it appears that life of an organism "A" was saved by the efforts of someone "B", and therefore, B is considered to be the saviour of "A" s life. Now, transcendentally or ultimately, "A" was saved because there was some balance period left in its life-span, according to its āyuṣya karma, and it could not have been saved, inspite of best efforts.

On the part of "B", if the life-span of "A" would have been exhausted. Thus, "B" only is a secondary or external cause in the process of saving, the primary cause being the balance period of life-span. Nothing at all can save "A" if the life-span has come to an end.

Same is the case with "A" being happy or miserable in the worldly state. In the worldly life, rise and fruition of auspicious karma (puṇya) alone is the primary cause of pleasures and happiness, while rise and fruition of inauspicious karma (pāpa) alone is the primary cause of suffering and miserableness. This being the eternally unalterable rule, the function of "B", who may be apparently instrumental in the happiness or misery of "A" could be regarded only as an external causative influence—nimitta.

It should be carefully noted that in all these cases the author does neither praise the efforts of B in saving A's life or being instrumental in A's pleasure, nor does he devalue them by saying that they are of secondary importance. The author's purpose, clearly, is to establish that B's efforts as A's saviour or benefactor must be viewed in porper perspective and "B" need not arrogate himself to be the ultimate, saviour or benefactor. In other words, while B's efforts are, no doubt, to be regarded as Good Samaritan acts from empirical aspect, in view of the ultimate aspect, they do not lead to B's spiritual purification or psychical advancement.


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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. Cooperation
  2. Greed
  3. Karma
  4. Naya
  5. Nimitta
  6. Pride
  7. Puṇya
  8. Pāpa
  9. Soul
  10. Upādāna
  11. Vyavahāra Naya
  12. āyuṣya
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