Bhagavati-sutra (Viyaha-pannatti)

by K. C. Lalwani | 1973 | 185,989 words

The English translation of the Bhagavati-sutra which is the fifth Jaina Agama (canonical literature). It is a large encyclopedic work in the form of a dialogue where Mahavira replies to various question. The present form of the Sutra dates to the fifth century A.D. Abhayadeva Suri wrote a vritti (commentary) on the Bhagavati in A.D. 1071. In his J...

Chapter 9: Sphere of time

Q. 52. Bhante! What is the sphere of time (i. e., where time is effective)?

A. 52. Gautama! 2½ islands (continents) and 2 oceans—these are stated to be the sphere of time. Of these, this island named Jambu-dvīpa is at the centre of all islands and oceans. The whole description is to be reproduced from the Jīvābhigama Sūtra40,...till the interior of half of Puṣkara, but the description of the Jyotiṣkas is to be excluded.

Chapter nine ends.

Notes (based on commentary of Abhayadeva Sūri):

40. The Sūtra gives the following description of the human world:

arihaṃta-samaya-bāyara-vijju-thaṇiyā balāhagā agaṇī
āgara-ṇihi-ṇai-uvarāga-ṇiggame vuḍḍhivayaṇom ca

[Where there are Arihantas, Cakravarties [Cakravartis/Cakravartins?], Baladevas, Vāsudevas, Prativāsudevas, monks, nuns, men, women, it is the ‘world of men’. Where there are time and time divisions, epochs, lightning, the roar of clouds, rainfall, fire-bodies, mines, hidden treasures, rivers, eclipses, the sun, the moon, their movement between the tropic of cancer and the tropic of cupicorn, waxing and waning of day and night, it is the “sphere of time”, the “sphere of men”.]

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