Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Caritra

by Helen M. Johnson | 1931 | 742,503 words

This is the English translation of the Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Charita (literally “The lives of the sixty-three illustrious People”), a Sanskrit epic poem written by Hemachandra in the twelfth century. The work relates the history and legends of important figures in the Jain faith. These 63 persons include: the twenty four tirthankaras , the t...

Purity of alms

There are so many references to the necessary purity of alms and the faults that must be avoided in that connection, that I append a complete list. This is based on Jacobi’s list in his edition of the Uttar, with additions and corrections. (See Uttar. 24.11 and the commentaries; Yog. 1.38 and com.; and the Sādhupratikramanādi, folio 14 ff.) These faults are sometimes referred to as forty-six, (e.g., in the Uttar, itself), but the number forty-seven is universally recognized at the present time. The explanation of the discrepancy will appear from the list.

There are 16 faults, udgama-doṣas that render food unfit for the monk.

  1. ādhākarmika, the fault in food, etc., which a layman has prepared especially for religious mendicants.
  2. auddeśika, addition of food for monks to food already prepared.
  3. pūtika, is food, etc., which is pure on the whole, but contains particles impure on account of the first fault.
  4. unmiśra, is food, etc., of which a part only had been prepared for the monk in question.
  5. sthāpanākarmika, is food, etc., which has been reserved for the monk.
  6. prābhṛtika, is food, etc., which has been prepared for some festivity celebrated because of a monk’s presence. E.g., if a wedding feast is in preparation, and the date has been advanced because of the arrival of a monk.
  7. prāduḥkaraṇa, when the layman has to light a lamp, or make a fire, etc., in order to fetch the alms for a monk.
  8. krīta, when he has to buy the things.
  9. prāmitya, when he has to borrow the things from some one else.
  10. parāvṛtti, when he makes any exchange of food, etc.
  11. abhyāhṛta, when a layman carries food to the monks and gives it.
  12. udbhinna, when he has to open locks, before he gets at the food, etc., or opens something that is sealed.
  13. mālāpahṛta, when he has to take the food, etc., from some raised or underground place, or from hanging receptacles.
  14. ācchidya, when the food, etc., was taken by force from some body.
  15. anisṛṣṭa, when a man gives anything from a common store without asking the other owners.
  16. adhyavapūra, when the layman knows in advance that the monk may come and additional food is prepared.

There are also 16 faults, utpādana-doṣas, that occur if the monk uses any means to make the layman give alms.

  1. dhātrīkarman, when the monk plays with the layman’s children.
  2. dūtakarman, when he gives him information about what his people are doing.
  3. nimitta, when he takes the role of a fortune-teller, i.e., he seeks favor by predicting good fortune.
  4. ājīvikā, when he makes his birth and family, former occupation, learning, etc., known to the layman.
  5. vanīpaka, when he professes to be the type of person that the layman favors.
  6. cikitsā, when he cures sick people.
  7. krodhapiṇḍa, when he extorts alms by threats.
  8. mānapiṇḍa, when he tells the layman he has made a wager with other monks that he would get alms from him.
  9. māyāpiṇḍa, when he employs tricks or buffoonery in order to procure alms.
  10. lobhapiṇḍa, when he goes begging from a desire for good fare.
  11. saṃstavapiṇḍa, when he flatters the layman, or when he pretends to know some one in his family to gain a favorable introduction.
  12. vidyāpiṇḍa, when he makes a show of his learning; or when he conjures a god from whom to get alms.
  13. mantradoṣa, when he does something to oblige the layman.
  14. cūrṇayoga, when he performs some miracle, or makes himself invisible and then takes away the food. (Cūrṇa refers to magic powder.)
  15. yogapiṇḍa, when he teaches people spells, tricks, etc.
  16. mūlakarman, when he teaches them how to obviate evils by roots, charms, etc.; especially the use of a charm in reference to an embryo.

There are 10 faults in the acceptance of the food, grahaṇaiṣaṇā.

  1. śaṅkita, when he takes food about whose purity there is doubt.
  2. mrakṣita, when the food is soiled by animate or inanimate matter which is not fit for monks.
  3. nikṣipta, when the food is placed among animate things.
  4. pihita, when the food is covered with animate things.
  5. saṁhṛta, when the layman has to take out from one vessel and put into another the thing to be given.
  6. dāyaka, when the condition or occupation of the giver forbids accepting alms from him, e.g., a blind man, or a pregnant woman.
  7. unmiśrita, when the layman mixes up pure and impure food.
  8. apariṇaṭa, when food has not been properly prepared—when germs of life are not destroyed.
  9. tipta, when the layman gives food, etc., with a ladle or his hand soiled with butter, honey, etc.
  10. chardita, when in giving alms he spills milk, etc.

There are four, or five, faults in the use of alms, paribhogaiṣaṇā.

  1. saṃyojanā, when the monk puts together the ingredients for a good meal.
  2. apramāṇa, when he accepts more than the prescribed amount of food.
  3. aṅgāra, when he praises good food, or a rich man for his good food.
  4. dhūma, when he blames poor food, or a poor man for his food. These two faults are sometimes combined into one, which explains the discrepancy between the numbers forty-six and forty-seven.
  5. akāraṇa, when he eats choice food on other occasions than those laid down in the sacred texts.
Like what you read? Consider supporting this website: