Sutrakritanga

by Hermann Jacobi | 1895 | 52,880 words | ISBN-10: 8120801466 | ISBN-13: 9788120801462

The English translation of the Sutrakritanga, which represents the second Agama of the 12 Angas in Shevatambara Jainism. It is traditionally dated to the 4th-century BCE and consists of two parts (verse and prose) explaining various doctrinal aspects of Jainism. Alternative titles: Sūtrakṛtāṅga (सूत्रकृताङ्ग), Sūtrakṛta-aṅga (सूत्रकृत-अङ्ग), Prakr...

Lecture 7: Nalanda

At that time, at that period, there was a town of the name Rājagṛha: it was rich, happy, thriving, &c.[1] Outside of Rājagṛha, in a north-eastern direction, there was the suburb Nālandā; it contained many hundreds of buildings, &c.[2] (1)

In that suburb Nālandā there was a householder called Lepa; he was prosperous, famous; rich in high and large houses, beds, seats, vehicles, and chariots; abounding in riches, gold, and silver; possessed of useful and necessary things; wasting plenty of food and drink; owning many male and female slaves, cows, buffaloes, and sheep; and inferior to nobody. (2)

This householder Lepa, a follower of the Śramaṇas, comprehended (the doctrine of) living beings and things without life, (&c., all as in II, 2, 76, p. 382, down to the end of the paragraph). (3)

This householder Lepa possessed, in a northeastern direction from the suburb Nālandā, a bathing-hall, called Śeṣadravyā[3]; it contained many hundreds of pillars, was beautiful, &c. In a northeastern direction from this bathing-hall Śeṣadravyā, there was a park called Hastiyāma. (Description of the park[4].) (4)

And there in some house the Venerable Gautama was staying. The venerable (man) was in the garden, and so was Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, a Nirgrantha and follower of Pārśva[5], of the Medārya Gotra. He went there where the Venerable Gautama was, and said: ‘O long-lived Gautama, I want to ask you about a point (of faith); O long-lived one, please explain it to me so as it has been taught (by the Tīrthakara).’ And the Venerable Gautama spoke thus to Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla: “Well, long-lived one, I shall see about it, when I have heard and understood (your question).” And Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, spoke thus to the Venerable Gautama: (5)

'O long-lived Gautama, there are Nirgrantha Śramaṇas, called Kumāraputras, who profess your creed; they make a zealous[6] householder, a follower of the Śramaṇas, renounce injury to movable beings except on the order (from an established authority), as the householder caused one of the captured thieves to be set free[7]. Those who make this renunciation, make a bad renunciation; those who cause this renunciation to be made, cause a bad renunciation to be made; in causing another to make this renunciation, they annul their own allegation[8]. Why do I say this? Beings belong to the Circle of Births; though they be (now) immovable beings, they will (some time) become movable ones, or though they be (now) movable beings, they will become immovable ones; when they leave the bodies of immovable beings, they will be born in bodies of movable ones, and when they leave the bodies of movable beings, they will be born in bodies of immovable ones. When they are born in bodies of immovable beings, it is no sin to kill them. (6)

‘(But if they make him renounce) injury to creatures which are, for the time being, movable beings, except on the order (from an established authority)--as the householder caused one of the captured thieves to be set free--(if they take this vow), those who make this renunciation, make a good renunciation; those who cause this renunciation to be made, cause a good renunciation to be made; in causing another to make this renunciation, they do not annul their own allegation. Though in this way[9] a correct expression is found, some (monks) from anger or greed cause the householder to make the renunciation (without the necessary restriction). Is not this our interpretation right? O long-lived Gautama, do you approve of it?’ (7)

And Gautama spoke thus to Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla: “O long-lived Udaka, we certainly do not approve of it. The Śramaṇas or Brāhmaṇas who say thus, speak thus, declare thus, and explain thus, do not speak as Śramaṇas or Nirgranthas, they speak noxious speech. They mislead laymen. They make void all vows undertaken for sparing particular living beings[10]. Why do I say this? Beings belong to the Circle of Births; though they be (now) immovable beings, they will (some time) become movable ones, (&c., all as in § 6, down to) when they leave the bodies of movable beings, they will be born in the bodies of immovable ones. When they are born in the bodies of movable beings, it is a sin to kill them.” (8)

And Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, spoke thus: ‘Which beings do you call movable beings? movable ones or others? ’

And Gautama spoke thus to Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla: "O long-lived Udaka, what you call beings which are, for the time being, movable ones, we call movable beings; and what we call movable beings, you call beings which are, for the time being, movable ones. Both expressions are equal, and mean the same thing. O long-lived one, why do you think it more correct to say: beings which are, for the time being, movable ones; and why do you think it incorrect to say: movable beings, that you censure the one expression, and applaud the other? This your interpretation is not right. (9)

"And the Venerable One has spoken thus: Some men there are who say: we cannot, submitting to the tonsure, renounce the life of a householder and enter the monastic state, but we shall gradually conform to the Gotra (i.e. community of the monks). Accordingly they make known the limits[11], fix the limits, determine the limits (beyond which they will not go in the enjoyment of worldly goods); and renounce injury to movable beings, except on the order[12] (of an established authority)--as the householder caused one of the captured thieves to be set free. And this turns out to their benefit. (10)

“Movable beings are called so, when they get this character[13] through the taking effect of the Karman relating to movable beings. But when their duration of life as movable beings comes to its close, the (soul), embodied in a movable being, leaves its life as such and becomes embodied in an immovable being. Immovable beings are called so, when they get this character through the taking effect of the Karman relating to immovable beings. But when their duration of life as an immovable being comes to its close, the (soul), embodied in an immovable being, leaves its life as such and takes again a new form of existence; they are (then) called[14] animated beings, (animals) of large bodies, or of long life.” (11)

And Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, spoke thus to the Venerable Gautama: ‘Is there not a chance, that a follower of the Śramaṇas, though he has renounced slaughter of but one class of living beings, ceases altogether to injure any[15]? Why do I say this? Beings belong to the Circle of Births, though they be (now) immovable beings, they will (some time) become movable ones, and though they be movable beings, they will become immovable ones. When they leave the bodies of immovable beings, all are born in bodies of movable ones, and when they leave the bodies of movable beings, all will be born in bodies of immovable ones. When they are born in bodies of immovable beings, they may be killed[16].’ (12)

And the Venerable Gautama spoke thus to Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla: “O long-lived one, we[17] do not admit what you say; viz. that there is a chance that a follower of the Śramaṇas should cease to do injury to any kind of living beings. Why do we say this? Beings belong to the Circle of Births, (&c., all as above, down to) when they are born in bodies of movable beings, it is a sin to kill them. They are called animated beings, (animals) of large bodies, or of long life. There are always a great many animate beings, (the slaughter of) which a follower of the Śramaṇas must renounce, there are none, (the slaughter of) which he need not renounce. If he ceases, or has done with, or has given up (injuring) the large class of movable beings, his renunciation is good. What you or somebody else says, that there is a chance of a layman’s ceasing to do an injury altogether, by renouncing slaughter of one kind of beings; this interpretation of yours is not right.” (13)

The Venerable One[18] gave an illustration: “I put a question to the Nirgranthas: O long-lived ones, (suppose) there be some men who have made the following declaration: ‘I shall not inflict punishment on those who, submitting to the tonsure, renounce the life of a householder and enter the monastic state; but I shall inflict punishment on those who lead a domestic life.’ Some Śramaṇa, who for four or five years, or for six or ten years--the period may be shorter or longer--has wandered about in the land, returns to domestic life. Now answer me: does the man break his word when he puts to death this (renegade) householder?” ‘Certainly not!’ “It is just the same with a follower of the Śramaṇas, who has renounced injury to movable beings, but not to immovable ones. If he kills immovable beings, he does not transgress his vow. This you acknowledge, O Nirgranthas, this you must acknowledge!” (14)

The Venerable One gave another illustration: “I put a question to the Nirgranthas. O long-lived Nirgranthas, (suppose) there be householders or sons of householders, born in respectable families, who come to you for instruction in the Law. Ought they to be instructed in the Law?” ‘Yes, they should.’ “When they have learned and understood this Law, will they say: this creed of the Nirgranthas is true, supreme, excellent, full of virtues, right, pure, it removes doubts, it is the road to perfection, liberation, Nirvāṇa; it is free from error and doubts, it is the road of those who are free from all misery; those who adopt it will reach perfection, (&c., all down to) put an end to all misery; exerting ourselves we shall control ourselves with regard to all kinds of living beings.--Will they speak thus?” ‘Yes.’ “Should such men be admitted to the order?” ‘Yes, they should.’ “Should such men be instructed in the discipline and kept to attend to religious instruction?” ‘Yes, they should.’ “Do they renounce injury to every living being?” ‘Yes, they do.’ “Now (suppose) one of these men who lead such a life, after wandering about in the land for four or five years, or for six or ten years--the period may be shorter or longer--returns to domestic life. Will this man (still) abstain from doing injury to every living being?” ‘No.’ “The same man[19] who at first (as a householder) had not renounced injury to every living being, who afterwards has renounced, and who now does not renounce injury to every living being, did at first not control himself, did so afterwards, and does not so now. As long as he does not control himself, he does not renounce injury to every living being[20]. This you acknowledge, O Nirgranthas, this you must acknowledge!” (15)

The Venerable One gave (another) illustration: “I put a question to the Nirgranthas. O long-lived Nirgranthas, (suppose) there be monks or nuns of other sects, who come to you for instruction in the Law, (all as before, down to) attend to religious instruction.” ‘Yes, they should.’ “Is it lawful to eat with such men?” ‘Yes, it is.’ “Now (suppose) some of these people who lead such a life, (&c., all as before, down to) return to domestic life. Is it lawful to eat with them then?” ‘No, it is not[21].’ “The same man with whom to eat was not lawful at first, was lawful afterwards, and is not lawful now, was no Śramaṇa at first, was a Śramaṇa afterwards, and is no Śramaṇa now. It is not lawful for Nirgrantha Śramaṇas to eat together with him. This you acknowledge, O Nirgranthas; this you must acknowledge!” (16)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: “There are some followers of the Śramaṇas, who have made this declaration: we cannot, submitting to the tonsure, renounce the life of a householder and enter the monastic state, but we shall strictly observe the Posaha on the fourteenth and the eighth days of each fortnight, (on the new-moon, and) full-moon days, we renounce gross ill-usage of living beings, grossly lying speech, gross taking of things not given, (unlawful) sexual intercourse, (unlimited) appropriation of property; we shall set limits to our desires in the two forms and in the three ways[22]. They will also make the following renunciation: ‘neither do nor cause anything (sinful) to be done for my sake.’ Having (on Posaha-days) abstained from eating, drinking, bathing, and using beds or chairs, may they, on their decease, be said to make a (righteous) end of their life?” ‘Certainly, they do make such an end of their life.’ “They are called animated beings, (&c., all as in § 13, down to) this interpretation of yours is not right.” (17)

The Venerable One spoke thus: “There are some followers of the Śramaṇas, who have made this declaration: we cannot, submitting to the tonsure, renounce the life of a householder and enter the monastic state; we also cannot strictly observe the Posaha on the fourteenth and the eighth days of each fortnight, (on the days of new-moon) and full-moon; but while we are preparing ourselves for death by fasting[23], we shall abstain from food and drink without longing for the end; we shall renounce all ill-usage of living beings, all lying speech, all taking of things not given, all sexual intercourse, all property, (saying): ‘neither do nor cause anything (sinful) to be done for my sake.’ (All the rest as in the preceding paragraph)” (18)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: “There are some men of great desires, great undertakings, &c.[24], who do not abstain from all ill-usage of living beings, (&c., down to) from all property. During the whole time, from their taking the vows of a follower of the Śramaṇas till their death, they abstain from injury to living beings. Then they die; in their next existence they experience their Karman, and receive an evil lot. (The rest as before)” (19)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: “There are some men of no desires, no undertakings, who abstain from all ill-usage of living beings, (&c., down to) from all property. During the whole time, from their taking the vows of a follower of the Śramaṇas till their death, they abstain from injury to living beings. Then they die; in their next existence they experience their Karman, and receive a happy lot. (The rest as before)” (20)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: “There are some men of few desires, few undertakings, who abstain from ill-usage of one sort of living beings, (&c., down to) from one sort of property. During the whole time, (&c., the rest as in the last paragraph).” (21)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: “There are some men who live in woods, in huts, near villages, or practise some secret rites, who are not well controlled, do not well abstain (from slaying) all sorts of living beings. They employ speech that is true and untrue at the same time: do not beat me, beat others, (&c., all as in II, 2, 21, down to) having died at their allotted time, they are born in some places inhabited by Asuras[25] and evil-doers. And when they are released therefrom, they will be born deaf and dumb or blind. They are called animated beings, (&c., the rest as in § 13).” (22)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: “There are some beings of a long life, which a follower of the Śramaṇas abstains from injuring through life. They die after him. They are called animated beings, (&c., the rest as in § 13).” (23) (The two next paragraphs treat in exactly the same way of beings of an equally long life, which die simultaneously with him, and of beings of a short life, which die before him.) (24, 25)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: "There are some followers of the Śramaṇas, who have made this declaration: we are not able to strictly observe the Posaha-days, but we are able, when preparing ourselves for death by fasting, to abstain from food and drink without longing for the end. The vow of such a man is the Sāmāyika Deśāvakāśika[26]: (he declares) in the morning: (I shall travel) only thus or thus far in an eastern, western, southern, northern direction. He renounces injury to all beings: I shall cause peace and security to all sorts of living beings.

"Within those (limits) the movable living beings, which the follower of the Śramaṇas abstains from injuring till his death, will leave their life, and will then be born, within the same limits, as movable living beings, which the follower of the Śramaṇas abstains from injuring till his death. With regard to them the follower of the Śramaṇas has made a good renunciation. They are called animated beings, (&c., the rest as before). (26)

"The movable beings within those limits, &c,[27], will, after their death, be born within the same limits as immovable beings, from injuring which without a purpose the follower of the Śramaṇas abstains till death, but not with a purpose[28], (&c., the rest as before). (27)

"The movable beings within those limits, &c., will, after their death, be born, beyond those limits, as movable or immovable beings, (&c., the rest as before). (28)

"The immovable beings within those limits, &c., will, after their death, be born, within the same limits, as movable beings, (&c., the rest as before). (29)

"The immovable beings within those limits, &c., will, after their death, be born, within the same limits, as immovable beings, (&c., the rest as before). (30)

"The immovable beings within those limits, &c., will, after their death, be born, beyond those limits, as immovable beings, (&c., the rest as before). (31)

"The movable and immovable beings beyond those limits, &c., will, after their death, be born, within those limits, as movable beings, (&c., the rest as before). (32)

"The movable and immovable beings beyond those limits, &c., will, after their death, be born, within those limits, as immovable beings, (&c., the rest as before). (33)

“The movable and immovable beings beyond those limits, &c., will, after their death, be born, beyond those limits, as movable and immovable beings, (&c. the rest as before).” (34)

The Venerable One spoke thus: “It has never happened, it does not happen, nor will it ever happen, that all movable beings will die out and become immovable ones, nor that all immovable beings die out and become movable ones. Since movable and immovable beings never die out, there is no chance, as you or somebody else say, that a layman ceases to do injury altogether by renouncing slaughter of one kind of beings; this interpretation of yours is not right.” (15)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: “If (a man) who has been instructed in right knowledge, faith, and conduct for the avoidance of sins, blames a (righteous) Śramaṇa or Brāhmaṇa though he is well disposed towards them, he effects the loss of his merit for another world; but if he does not blame them, he heightens the purity of his merit for another world.”

On this Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, took no further notice of the Venerable Gautama and was about to return in the direction in which he had come. (36)

And the Venerable One spoke thus: “O long-lived Udaka, he who has learned from a Śramaṇa or Brāhmaṇa whomsoever even one noble religious truth, and considers himself thereby furthered with regard to his peace and happiness, will respect, acknowledge, praise, salute, honour, reverence, and worship him even as a blessed and holy deity or sacred shrine.” (37)

Then Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, spoke thus to the Venerable Gautama: ‘As I had not before known, heard, understood, and comprehended these words, I did not believe in the meaning (of your words), which I had never perceived nor heard nor understood nor appreciated, and which were never explained nor defined nor delivered nor made clear to me, nor pondered over by me. But now, Reverend Sir, as I do know, &c., these words which I have perceived, heard, &c., I believe, accept, and approve of their meaning. It is just as you say!’ (38)

Then the Venerable Gautama spoke thus to Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla: “Believe it, sir; accept it, sir; approve of it, sir; it is just as we have said.” Then Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, spoke thus to the Venerable Gautama: ‘I desire, Reverend Sir, in your presence to pass from the creed which enjoins four vows[29], to the creed which enjoins the five great vows and the Pratikramaṇa[30].’ (39)

Then the Venerable Gautama went with Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, to the Venerable Ascetic Mahāvīra. Then Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, solemnly circumambulated the Venerable Ascetic Mahāvīra three times from the left to the right, and having done so he praised and worshipped him, and then he spoke thus: ‘I desire, Reverend Sir, in your presence to pass from the creed which enjoins four vows, to the creed which enjoins the five great vows and the Pratikramaṇa. May it so please you, beloved of the gods, do not deny me!’ Then, in the presence of the Venerable Ascetic Mahāvīra, Udaka, the son of Peḍhāla, passed from the creed which enjoins four vows, to the creed which enjoins the five great vows and the Pratikramaṇa. (40)

Thus I say.

Footnotes and references:

[1]:

This '&c.' refers to the typical description of towns. Our text contains only the first words of the description, but the Aupapātika Sūtra, § 1, gives it at length.

[2]:

I cannot tell where the full description occurs.

[3]:

The name denotes: the rest of materials, i.e. the hall which was built with the materials not used (in building the house), the well-known 'few remaining bricks.'

[4]:

The text is given in the Aupapātika Sūtra, § 3.

[5]:

Compare the Twenty-second Lecture of the Uttarādhyayana.

[6]:

Uvasampanna.

[7]:

These words seem to refer to an apologue told by the commentator: King Ratnaśekhara of Ratnapura, once making a pleasure trip, issued an order that nobody should remain in the town. Six brothers disobeyed, were brought before the king, and sentenced to death. Their father in vain implored the king to spare them, or to spare five, four, three, two of his sons. At last the king consented to pardon the eldest son, at which the old father rejoiced.--The six sons are likened to the six classes of living beings. As a householder cannot altogether abstain from injuring them, as monks do, he is content to abstain from injuring movable beings or animals.

[8]:

Viz. that by abstaining from slaughter of living beings they kill no living beings.

[9]:

I.e. by specifying the movable beings as beings which are movable ones for the time being.

[10]:

E.g. if a man vows to kill no Brāhmaṇa (and does not add the restriction 'for the time being'), he may kill no man or animal whatever; for the soul of that man or animal may, in the past, have been embodied in a Brāhmaṇa.

[11]:

Literally, the number. A sample of such vows is given in the beginning of the Uvāsaga Dasāo, see Hoernle’s edition, § 16 ff.

[12]:

Abhiyoga. Śīlāṅka enumerates four kinds of abhiyoga: gaṇa-, bala-, devatā-abhiyoga, and gurunigraha.

[13]:

Nāma, literally, name.

[14]:

They are called (vuccanti = ucyante) is apparently equivalent with: they get the name (nāma); 'name,' however, means in Jaina and Bauddha terminology as much as 'the nature of the thing.' The words of the text, therefore, come to mean: 'they become or are animated beings,' &c.

[15]:

The question discussed in the following paragraphs is whether, at some future time, all movable beings in the Saṃsāra might not die out, and none but immovable beings be left. This idea is combated at great length by Gautama.

[16]:

The meaning is, that at some future time movable beings may have ceased to exist, since they are all born as immovable beings, and vice versā. If the latter is the case, a layman, who abstains from killing animals, practically does injury to no being whatever; if the former is the case, he cannot transgress his vow even if he would.

[17]:

The text has the Sanskrit word asmākam, of which the commentator alleges that it was thus pronounced by all people in Magadha, compare note 2, p. 358.

[18]:

Gautama.

[19]:

Se je se jive, literally, his soul.

[20]:

Here the last sentence but one of the preceding paragraph ought to be repeated. But there is no trace of it in my MSS. or the commentary.

[21]:

No iṇ'aṭṭhe samaṭṭhe; I think the Sanskrit of this phrase, which is not explained by the commentator, is no ayam arthaḥ samarthaḥ.

[22]:

Viz. 'I will not do it, nor cause it to be done, either in thought or in word or in deed.' Compare Uvāsaga Dasāo, Hoernle’s edition, §13 ff.

[23]:

Saṃlehaṇajhūsaṇājhūsiyā.

[24]:

See II, 2, 61.

[25]:

Āsuriya. Śīlāṅka here offers a second explanation of this word, viz. asūrya, where no sun ever shines.

[26]:

The Deśāvakāśika 'consists in drawing closer or contracting every day the limits already laid down (in accordance with the Guṇavratas) to the range of one’s travels,' &c. The Guṇavrata referred to is the Digvirati, i.e. 'to lay down a limit beyond which one shall not travel in the different directions, or a limit as to the countries one shall visit for the acquisition of wealth.' From Bhandarkar Report, p. 214 f. The explanation in the commentary materially agrees with the above.

[27]:

The original repeats the phrases of the preceding paragraph. p. 432 I abridge them as far as possible, and give the full text only where it differs from that of § 26.

[28]:

This clause comes always after the words 'immovable beings' down to § 34.

[29]:

See above, p. 121, note 2. In this way the creed of Pārśva is characterised in contradistinction to that of Mahāvīra.

[30]:

'Pratikramaṇa is the expiation of sins . . . by means of Nindana Garhaṇa, Ālocanā, and other processes. Nindana is condemning the sinful act or repenting of it to oneself; Garhaṇa is doing the same before a Guru; and Ālocanā is making a confession of it to the Guru.' Bhandarkar, Report, p. 9, note ‡.

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