what is Jainism?

the way of ahimsa; Digambara and Svetambara
Post Reply
User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

cross-posted from DWT, found this good video on Jainism:

Ajay0
Posts: 185
Joined: Wed Aug 26, 2020 6:30 am

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by Ajay0 »

I have interacted with Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs and Jains and from my personal observation, find the Jains the sweetest. Their vibes are always harmless and pleasant. It perhaps may have something to do with the teachings of nonviolence in Jainism. :smile:
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost.~ Buddha AN 10.1

If you do right, irrespective of what the other does, it will slow down the (turbulent) mind. ~ Rajini Menon
User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

Ajay0 wrote: Sat Sep 12, 2020 11:28 am I have interacted with Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs and Jains and from my personal observation, find the Jains the sweetest. Their vibes are always harmless and pleasant. It perhaps may have something to do with the teachings of nonviolence in Jainism. :smile:
Yeah, I hear that a lot from people who have been around adherents of various religions. Buddhist lay people and even monks praise the Jains for their behavior, actions, ahimsa, sila, etc. See for example:
https://dharmapaths.com/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=1676

I think if they had done some missionary work in their early years like Buddhism did, they would be much more popular and have more adherents, something closer to the Buddhist numbers.
User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

See also this blog post from Ven. Dhammika (Buddhist monk):

https://sdhammika.blogspot.com/2010/01/ ... faith.html

If there were 3 billion Jains, or even 300 million, rather than just 3 million of them the world would be that much more peaceful.
User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

User avatar
Nicholas
Posts: 2607
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2016 8:21 pm
Location: California

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by Nicholas »

Can a Westerner convert to Jainism? Some religions may be open to conversion, but in practice one is still a foreigner.
A true mind and true intent bring truth within truth. True practice and true cultivation take the truth beyond truth. True behavior and true conduct add truth to truth. In everything and every way, be true, true, true. Master Hua
User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

Nicholas wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 4:29 pm Can a Westerner convert to Jainism? Some religions may be open to conversion, but in practice one is still a foreigner.
Good question. I've never been to a Jain temple (yet), but from what I've seen in online photos of some temples and their services, it looks like all the participants are [Asian] Indian-Americans. I remember seeing a blog one time from a white guy who converted to Jainism and was progressing to become a Jain monk. And there are a couple of celebrities of European-ancestry who converted to Jainism, but nothing like the conversion to Buddhism, which is in the millions.

I imagine a Western ancestry race/ethnicity person would feel like a foreigner in a Jain temple in the U.S. or other Western nation. I imagine the services might even be in Hindi, rather than English, even though this is an English speaking nation.

In theory / doctrine, Jainism is universal and open to everyone regardless of race/ethnicity, but yes, in practice, one might feel like an outsider, which is unfortunate.
User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

Sam Harris, Bhante Dhammika and perhaps some other scholars have said something like "the world would be a much better place if we had another 300 million or even better, a couple of billion Jains."

I agree with that.
User avatar
Nicholas
Posts: 2607
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2016 8:21 pm
Location: California

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by Nicholas »

Source Book in Indian Philosophy has about 20 pages on this heterodox system. Here is part of the preface to the three selections:
The Jainas are the followers of Vardhamana (Mahavira) (599 b .c. -
527 B.C.), who systematized the doctrine of the three tlrthankaras (founders
of the path), Rsabha, Ajitanatha, and Aristanemi (all of ancient date,
mentioned in the Yajur Veda).
The Jaina system does not accept the authority of the Veda. It commends
the truth of its system on the ground of its accordance with reality.
Its scheme of the universe is said to be grounded in logic and experience.
Its central features are its realistic classification of being, its theory of
knowledge with its celebrated doctrines of syadvada and saptabhangi, and
its ascetic ethics.
The Jainas admit five kinds of knowledge, (1) mati or ordinary cognition,
which includes memory, recognition, and induction; (2) sruti or
knowledge derived through signs, symbols, or words, which includes association,
attention, understanding, and naya or aspects of the meanings of
things; (3) avadhi or direct knowledge of things at a distance in time or
space (clairvoyance); (4) manahparyaya or direct knowledge of the thoughts
of others; and (5) kevala or perfect knowledge, which is all-comprehensive.
The first three are liable to error, not the last two.
Consciousness is the essence of the self (or soul); its manifestations are
perception and intelligence. The former is simple apprehension, while the
latter is conceptual knowledge. The Jainas adopt the mediate theory of
perception, and hold that things are extramental realities. The relation
between knowledge and its object is an external one with regard to physical
objects, though it is different in the case of self-consciousness. As light
reveals itself and other objects, so jnana (wisdom) reveals itself and others.
In knowing any object the self knows itself simultaneously.
A true mind and true intent bring truth within truth. True practice and true cultivation take the truth beyond truth. True behavior and true conduct add truth to truth. In everything and every way, be true, true, true. Master Hua
User avatar
Nicholas
Posts: 2607
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2016 8:21 pm
Location: California

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by Nicholas »

More from the preface: [pardon missing diacriticals]
In its perfect condition the soul is pure jnana and darsana, i.e., knowledge
and intuition. In its imperfect condition there are disturbing media,
passions and emotions, which cause the inflow of matter and prevent the
soul from exercising its natural function in full measure. Souls are substances
characterized by intelligence, and differences among souls are due
to the degrees of their connection with matter.
A prominent feature of Jaina logic is its doctrine of naya (aspects or
standpoints). Knowledge is either of the thing as it is in itself (pramana)
or of the thing in its relation (naya). Nayas give us knowledge of a thing
from particular standpoints and these relative views are abstractions from
which reality is regarded. The nayas are said to be seven in number. In
the saptabhangi (seven forms), we use judgments in seven different ways
to discriminate the several qualities of an object. Jainism holds that all
knowledge is only probable or partial. It gives us a “ somehow,” a
“ perhaps,” or a "maybe” (syad). This is the doctrine of syadvada. (This
doctrine is described in detail in the introduction and the selections of
section B of this chapter.)
The whole universe is traced to the everlasting, uncreated, independent
categories of jiva and ajiva, the conscious and the nonconscious. Animate
beings are composed of soul and body. The souls are distinct from matter
and are eternal. Nonconsciousness (ajiva) is divided into two main classes,
those without form (arupa) such as dharma (principle of motion), adharma
(principle of rest), space, and time, and those with form (rupa) such as
pudgala or matter. The Jainas believe in the atomic structure of the universe.
A true mind and true intent bring truth within truth. True practice and true cultivation take the truth beyond truth. True behavior and true conduct add truth to truth. In everything and every way, be true, true, true. Master Hua
User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

Nicholas wrote: Wed Dec 01, 2021 3:40 am
The Jaina system does not accept the authority of the Veda. It commends
the truth of its system on the ground of its accordance with reality.
Its scheme of the universe is said to be grounded in logic and experience.
Its central features are its realistic classification of being, its theory of
knowledge with its celebrated doctrines of syadvada and saptabhangi, and
its ascetic ethics.
:thumbsup: Jainism is often thought of as being similar or even an offshoot of Hinduism, but it's actually much more similar to Buddhism.
User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 5784
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:36 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by DNS »

Nicholas wrote: Wed Dec 01, 2021 10:22 pm More from the preface: [pardon missing diacriticals]

Jainism holds that all
knowledge is only probable or partial. It gives us a “ somehow,” a
“ perhaps,” or a "maybe” (syad). This is the doctrine of syadvada. (This
doctrine is described in detail in the introduction and the selections of
section B of this chapter.)
The whole universe is traced to the everlasting, uncreated, independent
categories of jiva and ajiva, the conscious and the nonconscious. Animate
beings are composed of soul and body. The souls are distinct from matter
and are eternal. Nonconsciousness (ajiva) is divided into two main classes,
those without form (arupa) such as dharma (principle of motion), adharma
(principle of rest), space, and time, and those with form (rupa) such as
pudgala or matter. The Jainas believe in the atomic structure of the universe.
:thumbsup: Sounds very scientific. The scientific method (contrary to some popular beliefs) never says that they "prove" something; it only provides evidence and a probable truth, still be tested and re-tested.
User avatar
Nicholas
Posts: 2607
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2016 8:21 pm
Location: California

Re: what is Jainism?

Post by Nicholas »

The rest of the preface. Of course this book has selections for each kind of major Indian philosophy, even the Carvakas - very materialistic group who existed around the time of Mahavira & Buddha.
The cause of the soul's embodiment is the presence in it of what is called
karmic matter. The self is never separated from matter until its final
release. The way to deliverance is through the three “jewels” of right
faith, right knowledge, and right conduct. Belief in real existence or the
tattvas is right faith. Knowledge of real nature without doubt or error is
right knowledge. The practice of the five virtues, (1) ahimhsa (non-violence),
(2) truth-speaking, (3) non-stealing, (4) chastity, and (5) non-attachment
to worldly things, constitutes right conduct. The Jainas were the first to
make ahimsa, non-violence, into a rule of life.
The state of “ release” for the Jainas is one of distinctiveness of the selves
endowed with the qualities that are generally attributed to the divine
principle in other systems, such as perfect tranquillity, perfect knowledge,
and perfect power.
A true mind and true intent bring truth within truth. True practice and true cultivation take the truth beyond truth. True behavior and true conduct add truth to truth. In everything and every way, be true, true, true. Master Hua
Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 16 guests