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...
Part 1 - On activities (Kiriyā or Kriyā)
In that period, at that time, there was a city named Rājagṛha,...till the people dispersed. In that period, at that time, a monk and disciple, Maṇḍitaputra by name, who was gentle by nature,....till worshipped and made the following submission:
Q. 67. Bhante! How many have been stated to be the activities (kiriyā/ kriyā)?
A. 67. Maṇḍitaputra! Activities have been stated to be five, which arc, physical, instrumental, hatred-born, and those arising from torture and slaughter14.
Q. 68. Bhante! How many have been stated to be the types of physical activities?
A. 68. Maṇḍitaputra! Two types, which are, anuparata-kāya-kriyā or activities of a body which is not desisted and duṣprayukta-kāya-kriyā or activities of a body which is ill-directed (usually that of an infatuated-restrained)15.
Q. 69. Bhante! How many have been stated to be the types of instrumental activities?
A. 69. Maṇḍitaputra! Two types, which are, saṃyojanādhikaraṇa-kriyā or activities necessitated to assemble, and nirvartanādhikaraṇa kriyā or activities necessitated to manufacture.
Q. 70. Bhante! How many have been stated to be the types of hatred-born activities?
A. 70. Maṇḍitaputra! Two types, which are, born of hatred towards soul, and born of hatred towards non-soul.
Q. 71. Bhante! How many have been stated to be the types of activities arising from/leading to torture?
Q. 71. Maṇḍitaputra! Two types, which are, torturing, by one’s own hand, and causing torture by other(s).
Q. 72. Bhante! How many have been stated to be the types of activities arising from/leading to slaughter?
A. 72. Maṇḍitaputra! Two types, which are, slaughter by one’s own hand, and slaughter by other(s).
Q. 73. Bhante! Is activity first, and pain next? Or is pain first, and activity next?
A. 73. Maṇḍitaputra! Activity first, pain next; not pain first and activity next.
Q. 74. Bhante! Do śramaṇas have activities?
A. 74. Yes, they have.
Q. 75. Bhante! What’s the activity of śramaṇa monks due to?
A. 75. Maṇḍitaputra! (It is) due to pramāda (carelessness), and due to yoga (activities of mind, words and body). On account of these, do the śramaṇa monks perform activities.
Q. 76. Bhante! Does a living being always tremble, tremble in various ways, move, throb, move in all directions, is enthused, pull up and transform in a measured way?
A. 76. Maṇḍitaputra! A living being always trembles... till transforms in a measured way.
Q. 77. Bhante! When a living being always trembles,... till transforms in a measured way, do these, in the end, become final activities for him?
Q. 78. Why do you say so that when a living being,... till in a measured way, these do not, in the end, become final activities for him?
A. 78. Maṇḍitaputra! So long as the living being,...till transforms in a measured way, he disturbs, resolves (to kill) and tortures; he continues to disturb, to resolve and to torture; he is disturbing, resolving and torturing; he is continuing to disturb, to resolve and to torture; and so he causes, to prāṇa, bhūta, jīva and sattva, grief, pain and sorrow, makes them shed tears, beats them, chastises them, makes them unhappy, and turns himself into an instrument (of torture). So it is said that a living being who trembles,...till suitably transforms in a measured way, such one does not perform final activities before his death16.
Q. 79. Bhante! Does a living being not tremble always in a measured way,...till does he not always get transformed accordingly?
A. 79. No, Maṇḍitaputra, not always does a living being tremble in a measured way,...till not always does he get transformed accordingly.
Q. 80. Bhante! When a living being does not always tremble in a measured way,...till does not always transform accordingly, does his activity before exit become his final activity?
A. 80. Yes, it does.
Q. 81. How does it happen?
A. 81. Maṇḍitaputra! When a living being trembles, not always in a measured way,...till not always transforms, he does neither disturb, nor resolve, nor torture, he employs not himself in disturbing, resolving and torturing; and when he does not disturb, nor resolve, nor torture, nor engages to disturb, to resolve, to torture, he does not become instrumental in causing grief to prāṇa, bhūṭa, jīva and sattva... till in making them unhappy17.
Maṇḍitaputra! A man throws a bundle of hay in the fire. Does it not burn at once?
Yes, it does.
Manditaputra! A man pours drops of water on a hot cauldron. Do these drops so poured on the cauldron not disappear at once?
Yes, they do.
Now, take the case of a tank, which is full of water, which js full to its capacity, full to the brim, which will overflow if more water pours in, which, like a jar full of water, is full everywhere. Do you understand?
Yes, Sir, I do.
Now, in that tank, if a man places a big boat with hundreds of small holes and hundreds of big holes, then, does not that boat, taking water in through those holes, become full of water? Does it not become full to the brim? Does it not have an overflow of water? Is it not full everywhere like a jar full of water?
Yes, it is as aforesaid.
Now, Maṇḍitaputra, suppose somebody applies wax on all the holes, and throws out the whole quantity of water; then, does it not float again?
Yes, it does.
Maṇḍitaputra! In the same manner, one who has restrained self by self, who observes all forms of vigiīance starting with vigilance ia movement,...till is controlled and restrained in sex behaviour, who is consciously careful when he moves, when he lives, when he sits, when he lies, when he picks up and places his cloth, pot, blanket, duster, etc,, even such a monk acquires, in an indeterminate way, activity of the type of non-vigilance for a moment which is no bigger than a wink of the eye. This, in the first stage, ties-and-touches, in the second stage, comes up and makes him experience, and in the third stage, gets exhausted. (In other words,) tied-and touched, come up, experienced and exhausted, this activity becomes, in future, virtually a non-activity, For this reason, Maṇḍitaputra, when a living being trembles not in a measured way,...till does not so transform, he has, at the time of his death, his final activity. So it is stated like that18.
(The implication is that a man without āsrava is without activity, and he crosses safely through the world.)
Notes (based on commentary of Abhayadeva Sūri):
14. For details, supra śataka 1 Uddeśaka 2.
15. For details, supra śataka 1 Uddeśaka 2.
16. The discussion on activities is relevant of those who have three types of activities, viz., of body, of mind and of words, not of those who have no activities. Six external expressions of activity are: throbbing, trembling, moving, pacing, walking and getting enthused. When indulging in activities, one cannot perform the final activity, nor terminate the cycle of life and death. The reason for this is that activities of body, mind and words have ārambha, saṃrambha and samārambha.
saṃkappo saṃrambho paritāvakaro bhave samārambho
ārambho uddabao savvanayāṇaṃ visuddhāṇaṃ
[Saṃrambha is decision to injure, Samārambha is to torture and ārambha is killing. Such is the view of the best nayas.]
17. This is a state when one is fixed rock-like, without activity of body, mind or words, śaileśī as it is called. For such one, all activities cease, and his activity before final exit becomes his final activity.
18. A man whose activities have ceased is the only one who has his final activity at death. In the case of the restrained, what to speak of his movement and other activities, even the movement of his eyes is done with the greatest precaution. It is for this that he has now only one activity called ‘cautious movement’ (īryāpathikī). Its stages have been indicated in the Sūtra itself.
Particularly significant is the word attattā saṃbuḍassa. It means one who has restrained self by self. Even such a person acquires karma, what to speak of one who is not at all restrained. The latter sinks like a boat with a hundred small holes and a hundred big holes.