Karma in Jainism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In Jainism, karma is the basic principle within an overarching psycho-cosmology. In the Jain cosmology, human moral actions form the basis of the transmigration of the soul (jīva). The soul is constrained to a cycle of rebirth, trapped within the temporal world (saṃsāra), until it finally achieves liberation (mokṣa). Liberation is achieved by following a path of purification.[1] In Jain philosophy, karma not only encompasses the causality of transmigration, but is also conceived of as an extremely subtle matter, which infiltrates the soul—obscuring its natural, transparent and pure qualities. Karma is thought of as a kind of pollution, that taints the soul with various colours (leśyā). Based on its karma, a soul undergoes transmigration and reincarnates in various states of existence—like heavens or hells, or as humans or animals. Jains cite inequalities, sufferings, and pain as evidence for the existence of karma. Jain texts have classified the various types of karma according to their effects on the potency of the soul. The Jain theory seeks to explain the karmic process by specifying the various causes of karmic influx (āsrava) and bondage (bandha), placing equal emphasis on deeds themselves, and the intentions behind those deeds. The Jain karmic theory attaches great responsibility to individual actions, and eliminates any reliance on some supposed existence of divine grace or retribution. The Jain doctrine also holds that it is possible for us to both modify our karma, and to obtain release from it, through the austerities and purity of conduct. Several scholars date the origin of the doctrine of karma prior to the migration of the Indo-Aryan peoples. They see its current form as a result of development in the teachings of the Śramaṇas, and later assimilation into brahmanical Hinduism, by the time of the Upaniṣads. The Jain concept of karma has been subject to criticism from rival Indian philosophies—like Vedanta Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sāṃkhya.


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1 Philosophical overview 1.1 Material theory 1.2 Self regulating mechanism 1.3 Predominance of Karma 1.4 Reincarnation and transmigration 1.5 Four states of existence 1.6 Lesya – colouring of the soul 1.7 Role of deeds and intent

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[9] Thus.htm 2 Origins and Influence 3 The process of bondage and release 3. in contemporary experience. and the resultant emotions—pleasure.[3] Material theory Jainism speaks of karmic "dirt". The material karma gives rise to the feelings and emotions in worldly souls.[8] When attracted to the consciousness. psychic karma.Wikipedia. pain.Karma in Jainism . as karma is thought to be manifest as very subtle and microscopically imperceptible particles pervading the entire universe. the ideally pure state of the soul has always been overlaid with the impurities of karma. and the ways and means of attaining mokṣa. result in influx and bondage of fresh material karma.[3] Over the centuries. The soul has been associated with karma in this way throughout an eternity of beginningless time. causing emotional modifications within the soul. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. Jain monks have developed a large and sophisticated corpus of literature describing the nature of the soul.5 Modifications 3. infinite bliss and infinite energy.4 Maturity 3.1 Attraction and binding 3.3 Experiencing the effects 3. and so on—experienced by the soul are called bhava karma.[3] This bondage of the soul is explained in the Jain texts by analogy with gold ore. possessing the qualities of infinite knowledge. the soul experiences life as known in the present material universe.[6] The relationship between the material and psychic karma is that of cause and effect. karma is a subtle matter surrounding the consciousness of a soul.[note 1] which—in turn—give rise to psychic karma. which—in its natural state—is always found unrefined of admixture with impurities. They are the material carrier of a soul's desire to physically experience this world. these qualities are found to be defiled and obstructed.6 Release 4 Rationale 5 Scientific interpretation 6 Criticisms 7 See also 8 Notes 9 References 10 Bibliography 11 External links According to Jains. love. on account of the association of these souls with karma. various aspects of the working of karma.[4] They are so small that one space-point—the smallest possible extent of space—contains an infinite number of karmic particles (or quantity of karmic dirt). This analogy with gold ore is also taken one step further: the purification of the soul can be achieved if the proper methods of refining are applied.[8] 2 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . When these two components—consciousness and ripened karma—interact. It is these karmic particles that adhere to the soul and affect its natural potency. These emotions. infinite perception. they are stored in an interactive karmic field called kārmaṇa śarīra.[2] However. which emanates from the soul. Similarly. yet again.2 Causes of attraction and bondage 3. all souls are intrinsically pure in their inherent and ideal state.[7] Jains hold that the karmic matter is actually an agent that enables the consciousness to act within the material context of this universe.[5] This material karma is called dravya karma. hatred.

The soul.[11] The Jain conception of karma takes away the responsibility for salvation from God and bestows it on man himself. or excessively intense emotional relationships. Jaini:[12] Jainism. and no moral judgment involved.[note 4] had to bear the brunt of his previous karma before attaining kevala jñāna (enlightenment). throughout all centuries. they become our masters and must fructify.[17] Jain texts narrate how even Māhavīra. the 24th tīrthaṇkara (ford-maker). Once done. Morality and ethics are important in Jainism not because of a God. consequences occur naturally when one utters a lie. There is no judge. The second-century Jain text.htm Self regulating mechanism See also: Jain cosmology and Jainism and non-creationism According to Indologist Robert J. karmic consequences are unerringly certain and inescapable. No God. as an elephant a clump of lotuses. more than any other creed. When one holds an apple and then lets it go. I can live as I like. Paul Dundas notes that the ascetics often used cautionary tales to underline the full karmic implications of morally incorrect modes of life. and I cannot escape the consequences of it. Predominance of Karma According to Jainism. Nothing can intervene between the actions which we do and the fruits thereof. the 24th tīrthaṇkara bore his karma with equanimity and attained liberation The biographies of the exploits of legendary persons like Rama (Rāma) and Krishna (Kṛṣṇa). but because a life led in agreement with moral and ethical principles (mahavrata) is considered beneficial: it leads to a decrease—and finally to the total loss of—karma. L. The major events. Rather than assume that these consequences—the moral rewards and retributions—are a work of some divine judge. where actions that carry moral significance are considered to cause certain consequences in the same way as physical actions.[16] Māhavīra. but my voice is irrevocable."[15] This predominance of karma is a theme often explored by Jain ascetics in the literature they have produced. However. characters and circumstances are explained by reference to their past lives.Wikipedia. In the words of the Jain scholar. there is no option but to accept karma with equanimity. Zydenbos.[18] The Ācāranga Sūtra speaks of how Māhavīra bore his karma with complete 3 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . As my independence is great. which in turn leads to everlasting happiness. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. with examples of specific actions of particular intensity in one life determining events in the next. Only the practice of austerities and self-control can modify or alleviate the consequences of karma. so my responsibility is co-extensive with it. 1616) sums up the predominance of karma in Jain doctrine: "There is nothing mightier in the world than karma. No divine grace can save a person from experiencing them.Karma in Jainism . [13][14] Even then. karma tramples down all powers. since this is a mechanical consequence of the physical action. he notes that such narratives were often softened by concluding statements about the transforming effects of the protagonists' pious actions. in some cases. Bhagavatī Ārādhanā (verse no.[note 2][note 3] also have karma as one of the major themes. his Prophet or his deputy or beloved can interfere with human life. and their eventual attainment of liberation. gives absolute religious independence and freedom to man. steals something. Jains believe that there is an innate moral order in the cosmos. commits senseless violence or leads a life of debauchery.[10] In the same manner. the apple will fall. self-regulating through the workings of the law of karma. in the Jain versions of the Ramayana and Mahabharata. He attained it only after bearing twelve years of severe austerity with detachment. J. karma is a system of natural laws. and it alone is responsible for all it does.

nāraki (hell beings) and tiryañca (animals. to enable his soul to experience the cruel themes of life.Karma in Jainism . proceeded on the road to nirvāṇa.[25] The hand with a wheel on the palm symbolizes the Jain Vow of Ahiṃsā. such a person attracts karma that ensures that his future births will allow him to experience and manifest his virtues and good feelings unhindered. the Venerable One humbled himself and bore pain. tore his hair under pain. The souls bound by karma go round and round in the cycle of existence. hit with a fruit."[21] The text further states (32. On the other hand.[20] Uttar ādhyayana-sūtra 3. or covered him with dust. a clod. or in lower life forms.[23] There is no retribution. Beating him again and again many cried. the Venerable One. abandoning the care of his body. indicates a latent desire to experience cruel themes of life. plants and micro-organisms). The four gatis are: deva (demi-gods). as follows. Throwing him up they let him fall. Therefore. This jīva sometimes takes birth as a worm. liberation. or disturbed him in his religious postures. even into future incarnations. Actions are seen to have consequences: some immediate.Wikipedia. a potsherd.[19] —Ācāranga Sūtra 8–356:60 Reincarnation and transmigration Karma forms a central and fundamental part of Jain faith. Jainism attributes supreme importance to pure thinking and moral behavior. Four states of existence See also: Jain cosmology The Jain texts postulate four gatis. Bearing all hardships.[22] In this case. that is states-of-existence or birth-categories. non-violence (ahiṃsā) and non-attachment. but also in relation to both future incarnations and past lives. he may take birth in heaven or in a prosperous and virtuous human family. Sometimes it acquires the body of a demon. a good and virtuous life indicates a latent desire to experience good and virtuous themes of life. When he once sat without moving his body many cut his flesh. he will attract karma which will ensure that he is reincarnated in hell.3–4 states: "The jīva or the soul is sometimes born in the world of gods. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. free from desires. as an insect or as an ant. so was there Māhavīra.[24] As a result of this doctrine."[21] Actions and emotions in the current lifetime affect future incarnations depending on the nature of the particular karma. some delayed. For example. among others. As a hero at the head of the battle is surrounded by all sides. So the doctrine of karma is not considered simply in relation to one life-time. being intricately connected to other of its philosophical concepts like transmigration. undisturbed. all this happens on account of its karma.htm equanimity. The word in the middle is "ahimsa". The wheel represents the dharmacakra which stands for the resolve to halt the cycle of reincarnation through relentless pursuit of truth and non-violence. or with a cruel disposition. sometimes in hell. a lance. whatever suffering or pleasure that a soul may be experiencing in its present life is on account of choices that it has made in the past.7): "Karma is the root of birth and death. within which the soul transmigrates. judgment or reward involved but a natural consequences of the choices in life made either knowingly or unknowingly. reincarnation.[10] Hence. a person who has indulged in immoral deeds. manuṣya (humans).[26] The four gatis have four corresponding realms or habitation levels 4 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . He was struck with a stick. the fist.[23] As a natural consequence.

while austerities and the making and keeping of vows leads to rebirth in heaven. commits cruel acts. however. killing of creatures having five sense organs.3 speaks of six main categories of leśyā represented by six colours: black.9. yellow. one's personal destiny is not seen as a consequence of any system of reward or punishment. red and white. humans. but rather as a result of its own personal karma. Bhagvati sūtra 8. lead to rebirth in hell. is 5 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . Deception. including the earth are simply the places which allow the soul to experience its unfulfilled karma. Nigodas are souls at the bottom end of the existential hierarchy. the soul also reflects the qualities of taste.[32] The soul travels to any one of the four states of existence after the death depending on its karmas Lesya – colouring of the soul Main article: Lesya According to the Jain theory of karma.[26] Single-sensed souls. Violent deeds. as well as its own salvation.[note 6] has not ceased to injure the six (kinds of living beings). In certain philosophies.htm in the vertically tiered Jain universe: demi-gods occupy the higher levels where the heavens are situated.[36] Uttarādhyayana-sūtra describes the mental disposition of persons having black and white leśyās:[37] A man who acts on the impulse of the five sins. that lead to the soul being born into good fortune. In all. red and white are auspicious leśyās. They are so tiny and undifferentiated.[35] The black. and so on.[34] Uttarādhyayana-sūtra 34. does not possess the three guptis. until it finds conditions that bring about the required fruits. living in colonies.9. a soul transmigrates and reincarnates within the scope of this cosmology of destinies.Wikipedia. such places. grey. the karmic matter imparts a colour (leśyā) to the soul.[30] Hence a soul may transmigrate from one life form to another for countless of years.[27] Depending on its karma. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. According to Jain texts. Kindness. blue.[note 5] and element-bodied souls pervade all tiers of this universe. depending on the mental activities behind an action. attachments and aspirations of a soul. Jain texts speak of a cycle of 8. that they lack even individual bodies.[30][31] It enables the soul to experience the various themes of the lives that it desires to experience. The four main destinies are further divided into sub-categories and still smaller sub–sub categories. and hellish beings occupy the lower levels where seven hells are situated. this infinity of nigodas can also be found in plant tissues. that acquires the color of the matter associated with it. compassion and humble character result in human birth.4 million birth destinies in which souls find themselves again and again as they cycle within samsara. eating fish.Karma in Jainism . is wicked and violent. taking with it the karma that it has earned. In the same way. leading to the soul being born into misfortunes.[33] The coloring of the soul is explained through the analogy of crystal. Accumulated karma represent a sum total of all unfulfilled desires. links specific states of existence to specific karmas. But according to Jainism.[29] Each soul is thus responsible for its own predicament. smell and touch of associated karmic matter. heavens and hells are often viewed as places for eternal salvation or eternal damnation for good and bad deeds.[28] In Jainism. root vegetables and animal bodies. The yellow. fraud and falsehood leads to rebirth in the animal and vegetable world. God has no role to play in an individual's destiny. plants and animals occupy the middle levels. blue and grey are inauspicious leśyā. although it is usually the colour that is referred to when discussing the leśyās. A text from a volume of the ancient Jain canon. called nigoda.

but engages in meditation on the law and truth only.[39] So the absence of intent does not absolve a person from the karmic consequences of guilt either. the third one suggests simply cutting the branches. thinks of picking up the fallen fruit. the person with the black leśyā. if an act produces violence. in order to spare the tree. In certain philosophies. 34. like Buddhism. Jains argue that the monk's very ignorance and carelessness constitute an intent to do violence and hence entail his guilt. In Jainism.21:22 A man who abstains from constant thinking about his misery and about sinful deeds. — Uttar ādhyayana-sūtra. the sixth one suggests picking up only the fruits that have fallen down. The thoughts. who unknowingly offered poisoned food to his brethren.31:32 The Jain texts further illustrate the effects of leśyās on the mental dispositions of a soul. At the other extreme. the second one suggests cutting the trunk of the tree. intent is important but not an essential precondition of sin or wrong conduct. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. in all its traditions. 34. according to the Jain analysis. 6 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . who practises the samitis and guptis. whereas the Jain view holds the monk to have been responsible. the monk is guilty of a violent act if the other monks die because they eat the poisoned food. the fifth one suggests plucking only the fruits. a person is guilty of violence only if he had an intention to commit violence. and subdues his senses—a man of such habits develops the white leśyā. knowingly or unknowingly. The crucial difference between the two views is that the Buddhist view excuses the act. since he was not aware that the food was poisoned.Karma in Jainism . due to his ignorance and carelessness.[36] Lesyas depicted in the parable of six travellers Role of deeds and intent The role of intent is one of the most important and definitive elements of the karma theory.htm afraid of no consequences.Wikipedia. then the person is guilty of it. They see a tree laden with fruit and begin to think of getting those fruits: one of them suggests uprooting the entire tree and eating the fruit. is calm. the person with the white leśyā.[38] Any action committed. Evil intent forms only one of the modes of committing sin.[39] John Koller explains the role of intent in Jainism with the example of a monk. who controls himself. is mischievous and does not subdue his senses – a man of such habits develops the black leśyā. the fourth one suggests cutting the twigs and sparing the branches and the tree. using an example of the reactions of six travellers on seeing a fruit-bearing tree. thinks of uprooting the whole tree even though he wants to eat only one fruit. according to Jains. — Uttar ādhyayana-sūtra. having evil disposition. According to the Jain view. On the other hand. has karmic repercussions. having a pure disposition. whose mind is at ease. whether or not he had an intention to commit it. but according to the Buddhist view he would not be guilty. words and bodily activities of each of these six travellers are different based on their mental dispositions and are respectively illustrative of the six leśyās. categorising it as non-intentional. whether he be still subject to passion or free from passion. At one extreme.

Dr.[51] Certain authors have also noted the strong influence of the concept of karma on the 7 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM .7: "[The] intentional act produces a strong karmic bondage and [the] unintentional produces weak. Jaini notes that the disagreement over the karmic theory of transmigration resulted in the social distinction between the Jains and their Hindu neighbours. which results in the soul absorbing more karma. to be unchaste and to acquire property. The presence of intent acts as an aggravating factor.Karma in Jainism . Each of the latter traditions. transfer of merit and like."[42] Jainism thus places an equal emphasis on the physical act as well as intent for binding of karmas. but rather may have developed as a part of the indigenous Gangetic traditions from which the various Sramana movements arose. although it is believed by some that the concept of karma has a philosophical background that is non-Vedic and non-brahmanical origin. the doctrine of karma must have existed at least a thousand years before the beginning of the Christian era. with only minimal technical details and classification. Although the doctrine of karma is central to all Indian religions. According to Glasenapp. the social ramifications of these views. Jaina views on the process and possibilities of rebirth are distinctly non-Hindu.[47] Jain and Buddhist scholar.[40] This is explained by Tattvārthasūtra 6.[46] Historian G.[44][45] It is probable that the concept of karma and reincarnation entered the mainstream brahaminical thought via the Sramana movement. Only Jainas have been absolutely unwilling to allow such ideas to penetrate their community. Acaranga Sutra and Sutrakritanga. the physical act is also not a necessary condition for karma to bind to the soul: the existence of intent alone is sufficient. increasing the vibrations of the soul. however.[43] There is no clear consensus amongst scholars as to its origins. According to the scholars. C."[48] The earliest works of the Jain canon.[49] With regards to the influence of the theory of karma on development of various religious and social practices in ancient India.[14] the ritual death of sallekhanā[50] and rejection of god as the creator and operator of the universe can all be linked to the Jain theory of karma. despite the fact that there must have been tremendous amount of social pressure on them to do so. it is difficult to say when and where in India the concept of karma originated. shortlived karmic bondage. to steal. moreover. Pande opines that early Upananiṣadic thinkers like Yājñavalkya were acquainted with the Sramanic philosophy and tried to incorporate ideas of karma."[41] Similarly.[48] The Jain socio-religious practices like regular fasting.Wikipedia. Padmanabh Jaini states: The emphasis on reaping the fruits only of one's own karma was not restricted to the Jainas. contain a general outline of the doctrines of karma and reincarnation. which refers to negative emotions and negative qualities of mental (or deliberative) action. have been profound. Padmanabh Jaini observes: "Perhaps the entire concept that a person's situation and experiences are in fact the results of deeds committed in various lives may not be Aryan origin at all. while (Mahayana) Buddhists eventually came to propound such theories like boon-granting Bodhisattvas. to which Jainism and Buddhism belong. both Hindus and Buddhist writers have produced doctrinal materials stressing the same point. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism.[51] Thus one of the most important Hindu ritual of śrāddha (offerings to ancestors) was not only rejected but strongly criticised by the Jains as superstition.htm Intent is a function of kaṣāya. In addition to śrāddha (the ritual Hindu offerings to the dead ancestors). developed practices in basic contradiction to such belief. Dr. we find among Hindus widespread adherence to the notion of divine intervention in one's fate. whether these offences are actually carried or not. the Jain conception of karma—as something material that encumbers the soul—is probably the oldest distinct element. Saṃsāra and mokṣa into the Vedic thought. leads to bondage of evil karmas. In any case we shall see. This is explained by Kundakunda (1st Century CE) in Samayasāra 262–263: "The intent to kill. Detailed codification of types of karma and their effects is not attested until the time of Umasvati in 2nd century CE. practicing severe austerities and penances.

Anger and pride when not suppressed.[5] The karmic influx occurs when the particles are attracted to the soul on account of yoga.[58][59] Hence the ancient Jain texts talk of subduing these negative emotions:[60] When he wishes that which is good for him. belief in the doctrine of rebirth may have led to the idea of the unity of all life and. short-lived karmic effect.[54][55] However. modality and motivation.[56] Out of the many causes of bondage. 8:36–39 The karmic inflow on account of yoga driven by passions and emotions cause a long term inflow of karma prolonging the cycle of reincarnation and transmigration of a soul.Karma in Jainism .[52] The karmic process in Jainism is based on seven truths or fundamental principles (tattva) of Jainism which explain the human predicament. Causes of attraction and bondage Main article: Causes of Karma (Jainism) The Jain theory of karma proposes that karma particles are attracted and then bound to the consciousness of souls by a combination of four factors pertaining to actions: instrumentality. or the mind. Yoga is the vibrations of the soul due to activities of mind.[57] The karmic inflow on account of yoga driven by passions and emotions cause a long term inflow of karma prolonging the cycle of reincarnations. emotions or passions are considered as the main cause of bondage. especially the ethics of non-violence. he should get rid of the four faults—anger. On the other hand. as in physical actions. —Daśavaikālika sūtra.[53] Out that the seven tattvas. deceit and greed are called sticky (kaṣāyas) because they act like glue in making karmic particles stick to the soul resulting in bandha. Once the doctrine of transmigration of souls came to include rebirth on earth in animal as well as human form. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. pride.[53] Attraction and binding The karmic bondage occurs as a result of the following two processes: āsrava and bandha. the karmic inflows on account of actions that are not driven by passions and emotions have only a transient. depending upon one’s karmas. stoppage (saṃvara) and release (nirjarā)—pertain to the karmic process. the four—influx (āsrava).Wikipedia. The karmas are literally bound on account of the stickiness of the soul due to existence of various passions or mental dispositions. This binding of the karma to the consciousness is called bandha. It is suggested that. it is quite probable that.htm Jain ethics. to the ethical concept of non-violence in ancient India. deceit and greed—which increase the evil. speech and body.[61] The instrumentality of an action refers to whether the instrument of the action was: the body. bondage (bandha). Āsrava is the inflow of karma. process. as in speech acts.[5] The passions like anger. The karmas have effect only when they are bound to the consciousness. and deceit and greed when arising: all these four black passions water the roots of re-birth. the yoga alone do not produce bondage. consequently. as in thoughtful deliberation. it created a humanitarian sentiment of kinship amongst all life forms and thus contributed to the notion of ahiṃsā. one's speech. 8 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . pride.

body and speech without any regard to oneself or others. deceit and greed—are the primary reason for the attachment of the karmas to the soul. can only be overcome by observing the minor vows of a layman.[69] Yoga (activities of mind. The modality of an action refers to different modes in which one can participate in an action. When different permutations of the sub-elements of the four factors are calculated. lack of enthusiasm towards acquiring merit and spiritual growth. pride. each divided into four types. The harming karmas (ghātiyā karmas) directly affect the soul powers by impeding its perception. deceit and so on. including: anger. 9 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . the Jain teachers speak of 108 ways in which the karmic matter can be attracted to the soul. the scriptures advise carefulness in actions. Each cause presupposes the existence of the next cause. All actions have the above four factor present in them. but the next cause does not necessarily pre-suppose the existence of the previous cause.Wikipedia.htm The process of an action refers to the temporal sequence in which it occurs: the decision to act. making preparations necessary for the act. there are eight main types of karma which categorized into the ‘harming’ and the ‘non-harming’.[67] The state of avirati and body influenced by various passions.[62] Even giving silent assent or endorsement to acts of violence from far away has karmic consequences for the soul. body and speech attract and bind the karmas when such actions are influenced by passions.[63] Hence. perverse viewpoints. approval or endorsement of an act. the causes of bandha or the karmic bondage—in the order they are required to be eliminate by a soul for spiritual progress—are: Mithyātva (Irrationality and a deluded world view) – The deluded world view is the misunderstanding as to how this world really functions on account of one-sided perspectives. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. speech harms oneself and others.[68] A soul is able to advance on the spiritual ladder called guṇasthāna.Karma in Jainism . or being one who gives permission.[70] Experiencing the effects See also: Types of Karma (Jainism) The nature of experience of the effects of the karma depends on the following four factors: Prakriti (nature or type of karma) – According to Jain texts. being one who instigates another to perform the act. and improper actions of mind. avirati is the inability to refrain voluntarily from the evil actions.[64][65] According to Tattvārthasūtra. irrational scepticism. plans to facilitate the act. They keep the soul immersed in the darkness of delusion leading to deluded conduct and unending cycles of reincarnations. greed. only when it is able to eliminate the above causes of bondage one by one. Pramāda (carelessness and laxity of conduct) – This third cause of bondage consists of absentmindedness.[66] Avirati (non-restraint or a vowless life) – The second cause of bondage. and purity in thoughts as means to avoid the burden of karma.[68] Kaṣāya (passions or negative emotions) – The four passions—anger. The motivation for an action refers to the internal passions or negative emotions that prompt the act. for example: being the one who carries out the act itself. pride. and ultimately the carrying through of the act itself. speech and body) – The threefold activities of mind. that Karmas are attracted by the activity of mind. awareness of the world. pointless generalisations and ignorance.

the more intense will be its experience at the time of maturity. longevity. mild or intense. that is. Jain texts is induced on account of licking provide minimum and the maximum duration for which such honey from the sword karma is bound before it matures. Anubhava depends on the intensity of the passions at the time of binding the karmas.[73] Pradesha (The quantity of the karmas) – It the quantity of karmic matter that is received and gets activated at the time of experience.—at the time of binding the karma.Wikipedia. those actions that are influenced by intense negative emotions cause an equally strong karmic attachment which usually does not bear fruit immediately.[71] Both emotions and activity play a part in binding of karmas. To explain this.[76] These supportive conditions for activation of latent karmas are determined by the nature of karmas. antarāya (obstacle-creating karma) and mohanīya (deluding karma). Although latent karma does not affect the soul directly.htm knowledge and energy.[75] However. and also brings about delusion. surroundings. These non-harming karmas are: nāma (bodydetermining karma). gotra (status-determining karma) and vedanīya (feeling-producing karma). The non-harming category (aghātiyā karmas) is responsible for the reborn soul's physical and mental circumstances. More intense the emotions—like anger. place. intensity of emotional engagement at the time of binding karmas and our actual relation to time. Vedaniya karma: Pain and Pleasure its existence limits the spiritual growth of the soul. It takes on an inactive state and waits Karma as moral action and for the supportive conditions—like proper time. In this way the law of causality is not infringed here. not arise. as generally most of our activities are influenced by mild negative emotions. It determines the power of karmas and its effect on the soul. and environment—to reaction: goodness sown is arise for it to manifest and produce effects. respectively.[71] Maturity The consequences of karma are inevitable. a Jain monk.Karma in Jainism . Ratnaprabhacharya says: "The prosperity of a vicious man and misery of a virtuous man are respectively but the effects of good deeds and bad deeds done previously. place. There are certain laws of precedence among the karmas. spiritual potential and experience of pleasant and unpleasant sensations. These harming karmas are: darśanāvaraṇa (perception-obscuring karma). jñānavāraṇa (knowledge-obscuring karma). The vice and virtue may have their effects in their next lives."[74] The latent karma becomes active and bears fruit when the supportive conditions arise.[75] A great part of attracted karma bears its consequences with minor fleeting effects. the respective karmas will manifest at the end of maximum period for which it can remain bound to the soul. āyu (lifespan-determining karma). according to which the fruition of some of the karmas may be deferred but 10 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . depends on the anubhava quality or the intensity of the bondage. Duration and intensity of the karmic bond are determined by emotions or "kaṣāya" and type and quantity of the karmas bound is depended on yoga or activity. greed etc. The consequences may take some time to take effect but the karma is never fruitless.[76] If the supportive conditions do reaped as goodness.[71][72] Different types of karmas thus affect the soul in different ways as per their nature. Sthiti (the duration of the karmic bond) – The karmic bond remains latent and bound to the consciousness up to the time it is activated. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism.[73] Anubhava (intensity of karmas) – The degree of the experience of the karmas.

However. no variations or modifications are possible—the consequences are the same as were established at the time of bonding.[86] 4.[86] 6.Wikipedia. Apavartanā (diminution) – In this case.[85] 3. that is.[86] 5. a man on moral path must develop a perfectly patient and unperturbed attitude in the midst of trying and difficult circumstances. speaking.htm not absolutely barred. Udīraṇa (premature operation) – By this process. austerities and penances. penance.[78] 5. that is.[77] Karma undergoes following modifications: 1. non-attachment and continence. self control. placing objects and disposing refuse. Three guptis or three controls of mind. Five samitis or observing carefulness in movement. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. Anuprekshas or meditation on the truths of this universe. 11 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . Saṃkramaṇa (transformation) – It is the mutation or conversion of one sub-type of karmas into another sub-type.[82] The Jain karmic theory.[82] 8. papa (bad karma) can be converted into punya (good karma) as both sub-types belong to the same type of karma.[81] 7. that is. The karma becomes operative only when the duration of subsidence ceases. humility. Jain texts also hold that a soul has energy to transform and modify the effects of the karmas.[78] 2. This is possible by samvara. contentment. Nidhatti (prevention) – In this state.[77] Release Jain philosophy assert that emancipation is not possible as long as the soul is released from bondage of the karmas. there is subsequent decrease in duration and intensity of the karmas due to positive emotions and feelings. truthfulness. renunciation.[87] The shedding or Nirjara of karmic dust or karmas is possible by austerities. stoppage of inflow of new karmas. eating. shedding of existing karmas through conscious efforts. For example. repentance and devotion to Arihants and Siddhas. premature operation and transformation is not possible but augmentation and diminution of karmas is possible.[80] 6. Nikācanā (invariance) – For some sub-types.Karma in Jainism .[74] Modifications Although the Jains believe the karmic consequences as inevitable. thus speaks of great powers of soul to manipulate the karmas by its actions. there is a subsequent increase in duration and intensity of the karmas due to additional negative emotions and feelings. this does not occur between different types. Nirjar ā or annihilation of the existing karmas is possible through tapas. endeavour to remain in steady spiritual practices.[79] 3. it is possible to make certain karmas operative before their predetermined time. Pariṣahajaya. detachment. Cāritra.[83] Samvara or stoppage of karmic influx is achieved through practice of: 1. straightforwardness. that is. Upaśamanā (state of subsidence) – During this state the operation of karma does not occur.[84] 2. and nirjarā. Ten dharmas or observation of good acts like – forgiveness. Udvartanā (augmentation) – By this process. speech and body.[78] 4. Udaya (maturity) – It is the fruition of karmas as per its nature in the due course. that is.

one only needs to recall that science found proof of the existence of molecules and atoms only the 19th and 20th century. yet we are able to know it from its actions. and south many men have been born according to their merit. some as ugly men. one is a master while another is a slave and similarly we find the high and the low. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. sitting and sleeping in lonely place and renunciation of comforts.Karma in Jainism . There are many oddities in this world and it will have to be admitted that behind all this some powerful force is at work whereby the world appears to be full of oddities.[89] Sūtrakṛtāṅga. though such theories were in existence. Some authors have sought to explain the concept of karmic particles in the context of modern science and physics.[92] Anyone who would have suggested that these "indivisible" particles were made up of even subtler units like quarks and leptons only a hundred years ago may have been dismissed. Then. With regards to interaction of consciousness and karmic matter. Even amongst the twins born of the same mother. some of good complexion. the blind and the deaf and many such oddities.[92] While admitting that 12 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . Hermann Kuhn points out that. these and other elementary particles that have been either discovered or postulated cannot be equated with karmic particles. luck. differences in lifespan. accepting food under certain conditions. This force is called 'karma'. of happiness and misery. of inequalities and of existence of different species of living beings. one black and another white. some as non-Aryas.Wikipedia. 2. we find one a dullard and another intelligent. spiritual study. it can be easily understood considering that ideas like the mind fundamentally affecting matter are now accepted in scientific circles. sufferings. one rich and another poor.13 Jains thus cite inequalities. some as small men. some in noble families. See also: Reincarnation research Jain philosopher-monks postulated the existence of karma as subtle and microscopic particles that cannot be perceived by senses. Six forms of internal tapas are—atonement.1. control of appetite. The thrones of mighty monarchs are gone. north. some of bad complexion. some as handsome men. The theory of karma is able to explain day-to-day observable phenomena such as inequality between the rich and the poor. some two millennia before modern science proved the existence of atoms and subatomic particles. some in low families. although the idea of "karmic particles" is not yet proven. However. one of the oldest canon of Jainism. some as big men. and pain as evidence for the existence of karma. Six forms of external tapas are—fasting. as inhabitants of this our world—some as Aryas. rendering of service to worthy ones. renunciation of delicious food.[88] Justice Tukol notes that the supreme importance of the doctrine of karma lies in providing a rational and satisfying explanation to the apparent unexplainable phenomenon of birth and death. reverence. We are unable to perceive karma by our naked eyes.htm Tapas can be either external or internal. avoiding selfish feelings and meditation. According to Jains. What is all this due to? They could not have done any deeds while they were in their mother’s womb. such inequalities and oddities that exist even from the time of birth can be attributed to the deeds of the past lives and thus provide evidence to existence of karmas:[91] One is stout while another is lean. the mutilated and the lame. states:[90] Here in the east. — Sūtrakṛ tāṅga. he further states that. and the ability to enjoy life despite being immoral. The proud and the haughty have been humiliated in a moment and reduced to ashes. west. And of these men one man is king. why then should such oddities exist? We have then to infer that these disparities must be the result of their deeds in their past births though they are born together at one time.

that is."[97] In another Buddhist text Majjhima Nikāya.[99] Buddha also criticises the Jain ascetic practice of various austerities. stating that even a habitual sinner spends more time "not doing the sin" and only some time actually "doing the sin. According to Dr. as these beings clearly would not have had prior opportunity to perform any karmically meaningful actions. he is of opinion that it does not state anything against its existence. a man's fate or karma is decided by what he does habitually. dynamic high energy particles which permeate the universe. then. even though they also believe in karma. Buddha criticises this view.[93] However.[100][note 8] While admitting the complexity and sophistication of the Jain doctrine. the entire concept of nitya-nigoda undermines the concept of karma.[101] The concept of nitya-nigoda. The Buddha responds. a headman who was originally a disciple of Māhavīra. according to him. rather than on eliminating evil mental states such as greed. according to Māhavīra (Nigaṇṭha Nātaputta). hatred and delusion.[94] The Jain theory of karma has been challenged since ancient times by Vedanta Hindu. 2. Adi Sankara. has interpreted karma in terms of modern physics. is happier when not practising the austerities. justly deserved pleasure and pain. The ancient Buddhist scripture Saṃyutta Nikāya narrates the story of Asibandhakaputta. Jaini. Buddha contends with a Jain monk who asserts that bodily actions are the most criminal. neither can super sensuous.Wikipedia.htm though science has not discovered karmic matter yet.[92] K. Vedanta Hindus considered the Jain position on the supremacy and potency of karma. specifically its insistence on non-intervention by any Supreme Being in regard to the fate of souls. Mardia. the Buddha criticizes Jain emphasis on the destruction of unobservable and unverifiable types of karma as a means to end suffering.[102] Statuette of Siddhārtha Gautama The Buddha. as worthy of the label nāstika or atheistic.Karma in Jainism . a supreme being (Ishvara). in a commentary to Brahma Sutras (III. Buddha. considering this view to be inadequate.[96] [note 7] Strong emphasis on the doctrine of karma and intense asceticism was also criticised by the Buddhists. in his book The Scientific Foundations of Jainism. Buddhist and Sāṃkhya philosophies.[98] In the Upālisutta dialogue of this Majjhima Nikāya text. is also criticized. According to Jainism. claiming that he. which are observable and verifiable. who is documented as having criticised some aspects of Jain karma theory 13 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . living in colonies and pervading the entire universe. in comparison to the actions of speech and mind. The fruits. most scientists do not consider karma and reincarnation to be within the bounds of science. In particular.[95] For example. namely. the re-entry of soul in womb after the death. V. nigodas are lowest form of extremely microscopic beings having momentary life spans. argues that the original karmic actions themselves cannot bring about the proper results at some future time. Padmanabh Jaini compares it with that of Hindu doctrine of rebirth and points out that the Jain seers are silent on the exact moment and mode of rebirth. non-intelligent qualities like adrsta—an unseen force being the metaphysical link between work and its result—by themselves mediate the appropriate. which states that there are certain categories of souls who have always been nigodas. saying that the actions of mind are most criminal. telling him that. must be administered through the action of a conscious agent. suggesting that the particles are made of karmons. and 41)). He debates with the Buddha. 38. as it is neither a testable nor a falsifiable theory. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. and not the actions of speech or body.

He compares it to the efforts and pains undertaken by a businessman to earn profit. 107. 35. In the sixteenth century. eating. Ashok Kumar. ^ Jhaveri. 11. they should be undertaken as it is the only means of getting rid of the karma. Padmanabh (1998): p. According to him suffering is on account of past karmas and not due to penances. 4. 7. & Jain. See Haribhadrasūri. 27. placing objects and disposing refuse. the Jain theory of karma does not imply lack of free will or operation of total deterministic control over destinies. 2.Karma in Jainism . The five samitis are: carefulness in movement. Hence. speech and body. and liberated souls." see Dundas.htm Karma is also criticised on the grounds that it leads to the dampening of spirits with men suffering the ills of life because the course of one's life is determined by karma. who are unliberated. 9. which makes him happy. as Paul Dundas puts it. 320 5. the doctrine of karma does not promote fatalism amongst its believers on account of belief in personal responsibility of actions and that austerities could expatiate the evil karmas and it was possible to attain salvation by emulating the life of the Jinas. Robert (2006) p. 8. 34. Another target of these Jain Mahābhāratas was Kṛṣṇa who ceases to be the pious Jain of early Śvetāmbara tradition and instead is portrayed as a devious and immoral schemer. 4. Christopher (1990): p. 255. Jain writers in western India produced versions of the Mahābhārata libelling Viṣṇu who. ^ The word tīrthaṇkara is translated as ford-maker. ^ The Jain hierarchy of life classifies living beings on the basis of the senses: five-sensed beings like humans and animals are at the top. 55. 7. ^ Tatia. ^ a b Zydenbos. The three guptis are: control of mind.Wikipedia. Robert (2006): p. 1328–29 ^ a b Kuhn. 6. see Jainism and non-creationism. 3. Natubhai (1998): p. ^ Jaini. 14 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . Hermann (2001): p. Fording means crossing or wading in the river. ^ a b c Jaini. Haribhadra refutes the Buddhist view that austerities and penances results in suffering and pain. ^ Chapple. who are free from all karma. 3. 2. according to another influential Hindu text. 47 1. (2001): pp. ^ a b c Jaini. 6. John (1996) p.[103] It is often maintained that the impression of karma as the accumulation of a mountain of bad deeds looming over our heads without any recourse leads to fatalism. had created a fordmaker-like figure who converted the demons to Jain mendicancy. J. ^ Shah. but is also loosely translated as a prophet or a teacher. 104–06. the Śiva Purāṇa. speaking. Paul (2002): p. Paul (2002): pp. ^ For the Jain refutation of the theory of God as operator and dispenser of karma. ^ Jain philosophy categorises the souls jivas into two categories: worldly souls. Jain monks have to follow certain supplementary practices that augment these major vows. 237. ^ "The first Jain version of the Rāmāyaṇa was written in about the fourth century CE in Prākrit by Vimala Sūri. see Grimes. Hermann (2001): p. Nathmal (1994): p. 238–39. Padmanabh (1998): p. ^ In addition to the Mahavrata or five vows. B.[104] However. In the same way the austerities and penances are blissful to an ascetic who desires emancipation. Even if penances result in some suffering and efforts. 262. thus enabling the gods to defeat them. 112. ^ "The Jains seem at times to have employed the epic to engage in confrontation with the Hindus. ^ Kuhn.[14] Karma Karma in Buddhism Karma in Hinduism 1." see Dundas. ^ In the 8th century Jain text Aṣṭakaprakaraṇam (11. they are called ford-makers because they serve as ferrymen across the river of transmigration. Padmanabh (1998): pp. 5. Sinha.1–8). 25. Sagarmal (2000) p. and single sensed beings like microbes and plants are at the bottom. ^ Zydenbos.[105] Furthermore. 8. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism. 10. These are three guptis and five samitis.

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org/w/index. a non-profit organization. Inc.asp) — @ Hinduwebsite.com. the free encyclopedia file:///C:/Users/akmoe/Documents/JAINISM/Karma_in_Jainism.php?title=Karma_in_Jainism&oldid=491743915" Categories: Karma in Jainism Jain philosophical concepts Reincarnation This page was last modified on 10 May 2012 at 05:27. See Terms of use for details. additional terms may apply. Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation.hinduwebsite.com/jainism/karmainjainism.htm Jainism and the concept of karma (http://www.wikipedia..Wikipedia.Karma in Jainism . by Jayaram V Retrieved from "http://en. 18 of 18 6/12/2013 6:18 PM . Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.

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