Asteyavrata, Asteya-vrata: 2 definitions

Introduction

Introduction:

Asteyavrata means something in Jainism, Prakrit. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

[«previous next»] — Asteyavrata in Jainism glossary
Source: archive.org: Jaina Yoga

Asteyavrata (अस्तेयव्रत) refers to “vow of not stealing” and represents an observance (vrata) laid down for Jain laymen, classified within the aṇuvrata group. The Śvetāmbara writers generally preface any discussion of stealing (steya or caurya or more generally adattādana, “the taking of what has not been given”) by fourfold classification of adatta, according to Devagupta’s Nava-pada-prakaraṇa (with Laghu-vṛtti): (1) ‘what is not granted by its owner’ (svāmyadatta), (2) ‘what is not granted by a living creature’ (jīvādatta), (3) ‘what is not granted by the Tīrthaṅkara’ (Tīrthaṅkaradatta), (4) ‘what is not given to the monks’ (gurvadatta).

The aticāras of this vow are given alike by Śvetāmbaras and Digambaras:

  1. receiving stolen goods (stenahṛtādāna);
  2. suborning of thieves (taskara-prayoga);
  3. transgressing the limits of a hostile state (viruddha-rājyātikrama);
  4. using false weights and measures (kūṭa-tula-kūṭa-māna);
  5. substitution of inferior commodities (tat-pratirūpaka-vyavahāra).

The transgressions of the asteya-vrata discussed above apply, it is clear, more particularly to members of the trading class. But Hemacandra (in his Yogaśāstra verse 3.92), and with him Āśādhara (in his Sāgāra-dharmāmṛta verse 4.50), raise the point that they may also be committed by the king’s ministers and other officials. Thus a vassal ruler (sāmanta) who assists an enemy of the king to whom he owes allegiance is guilty of viruddha-rājyātikrama.

Source: Encyclopedia of Jainism: Tattvartha Sutra 7: The Five Vows

Asteyavrata (अस्तेयव्रत) refers to the “vow of non-stealing” according to the 2nd-century Tattvārthasūtra 7.6.—What are the five observances of the vow of non-stealing (asteyavrata)? The five observances of the vow of non-stealing are: residence in unoccupied place (śūnyāgāravāsa), residence in a deserted place (vimocitāvāsa), not obstructing access to others (paroparodhākaraṇa), pure food (bhaikṣyaśuddhi) and not quarrelling with fellow ascetics about articles of common use (sadharma-avisaṃvāda).

What is the benefit of observing these five observances (asteya-vrata)? Observing these make free from developing a feeling of mine and strengthens the vow of non-stealing

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Jainism is an Indian religion of Dharma whose doctrine revolves around harmlessness (ahimsa) towards every living being. The two major branches (Digambara and Svetambara) of Jainism stimulate self-control (or, shramana, ‘self-reliance’) and spiritual development through a path of peace for the soul to progess to the ultimate goal.

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