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Samayasara - by Acharya Kundakunda: Transcendental Aspect Of Right Conduct

kammaṃ jaṃ puvvakayaṃ suhāsuhamaṇeyavittharavisesaṃ.
tatto ṇiyattade appayaṃ tu jo so paḍikkamaṇaṃ..

kammaṃ jaṃ suhamasuhaṃ jamhiya bhāvamhi bajjhadi bhavissaṃ.
tatto ṇiyattade jo so paccakkhāṇaṃ havadi cedā..

jaṃ suhamasuhamudiṇṇaṃ saṃpaḍi ya aṇeyavittharavisesaṃ.
taṃ dosaṃ jo cedadi so khalu āloyaṇaṃ cedā..

ṇiccaṃ paccakkhāṇaṃ kuvvadi ṇiccaṃ pi jo paḍikkamadi.
ṇiccaṃ āloceyadi so hu carittaṃ havadi cedā..

(Puvvakayaṃ aṇeyavittharavisesaṃ jaṃ suhāsuhaṃ kammaṃ tatto jo tu appayaṃ ṇiyattade so paḍikkamaṇaṃ) [From transcendental aspect,] [only] that [soul] itself, which has turned its back towards the vast variety of [both] auspicious and inauspicious actions is real repentance for the past misconduct/transgressions [pratikramaṇa]; [but a routine act is not real pratikramaṇa].

(Ya bhavissaṃ jaṃ suhamasuhaṃ kammaṃ jamhi bhāvamhi bajjhadi tatto jo cedā ṇiyattade so paccakakhāṇaṃ havadi) [From transcendental aspect,] [only] that soul itself which retires and keeps away from those impure psychic conditions which had resulted in the bondage of various auspicious and inauspicious karma is real renunciation (for the future) [pratyākhyāna] [but a routine act is not real pratyākhyāna].

(Saṃpaḍi ya udiṇṇaṃ jaṃ aṇeyavittharavisesaṃ suham­suhaṃ taṃ dosaṃ jo cedā cedadi so khalu āloyaṇaṃ) [From the transcendental aspect,] [only] that soul itself which has realized as misconduct all those impure psychic states which are the result of fruition of a vast variety of auspicious and inauspicious karma is real confession (of the past transgressions) [ālocanā] [but a routine act is not real ālocanā].

(Jo cedā ṇiccaṃ paccakkhāṇaṃ kuvvadi ṇiccaṃ pi paḍikkamadi ṇiccaṃ āloceyadi so hu carittaṃ havadi) [And thus, from the transcendental aspect,] [only] that soul itself which is always engaged in the practice of the above-mentioned—repentance [pratikramaṇa], renunciation [pratyākhyāna] and confession [ālocanā]—is real [right] conduct [cāritra] [but the routine act is not real cāritra].


In the last chapter, we had discussed some daily routine acts of an ascetic, such as repentance for the past transgressions (pratikramaṇa), (verses 9.19 & 9.20). The author had, in strong terms devalued these routine acts as pots of poison from the transcendental aspect. Now he reverts to the subject and reveals the real or transcendental aspect of these routine acts.

We have already said earlier that Jains give as much importance to right conduct as to right faith and right knowledge. While the right faith turns the soul in the right direction and the right knowledge illumines the path, the right conduct leads to the goal, i.e., final liberation is the fulfillment of conduct. Right knowledge and right conduct—spiritual discipline—are equally necessary for emancipation.

But the scriptures evaluate the conduct from both empirical as well as transcendental aspects. The routine acts of an ascetic—observance of great vows, austerities, penance, restraint and discipline—constitute the right conduct form the empirical aspect or vyavahāra naya. Daily performance of eight kinds of discipline described in the last chapter is very essential for an ascetic life. All these are prescribed to control and restraint the impure impulses of the ascetic in the early stages of spiritual progress. Later on, however, these routine acts become less important in view of the observance of pure transcendental conduct or niścaya cāritra. From the transcendental aspect, the purer states of the soul attained by the aspirant, themselves constitute the right conduct. The acts of repentance, renunciation etc. are then relegated to an inferior status as they become non-essential. In the above verses Ācārya Kundakunda clearly describes the constituents of the right conduct from the transcendental aspect.


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. Cāritra
  2. Discipline
  3. Karma
  4. Kundakunda
  5. Naya
  6. Pratikramaṇa
  7. Soul
  8. Vyavahāra Naya
  9. Ācārya
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