Yogadrstisamuccaya of Haribhadra Suri (Study)

by Riddhi J. Shah | 2014 | 98,110 words

This page relates ‘Rejoicer of worldly existence (Bhavabhinandi Jiva)’ of the study on the Yogadrstisamuccaya: a 6th-century work on Jain Yoga authored by Haribhadra Suri consisting of 228 Sanskrit verses. The book draws from numerous sources on traditional Yoga. Three important topics are stipulated throughout this study: 1) nature of liberation, 2) a liberated soul, and 3) omniscience.—This section belongs to the series “A Line of Demarcation between the first four and last four Yogadrishtis”.

Chapter 5.3 - A Rejoicer of worldly existence (Bhavābhinandī Jīva)

Till now we dilated upon nature of the avedyasaṃvedyapada. Haribhadrasūri proceeds by stating that such avedyasaṃvedyapada is possessed by a soul who is a rejoicer of worldly existence. In Sanskrit such a soul is called Bhavābhinandī Jīva[1] . Haribhadrasūri defines him as a one who has high regard for transmigration[2] . Here, the word bhava is broadly interpreted as transmigration or worldly existence. However it is also interpreted as rigid belief for atattva.

A rejoicer of worldly existence is the one who possesses intense delusion and strong disbelief for the ultimate truth, holds avedyasaṃvedyapada, owns oghadṛṣṭi[3] , craves for enjoyments of worldly objects. First of all Haribhadrasūri narrates those characteristics of a rejoicer of worldly existence[4] which are commonly accepted by almost all Jain scholars.

They are eight in number[5] .

  1. Petty,
  2. Un-generosity,
  3. Miserable,
  4. Jealous,
  5. Fear-stricken,
  6. Deceitful,
  7. Foolish,
  8. Engaged in undertakings that bear no fruits.

These eight characteristics of a rejoicer of worldly existence [bhavābhinandī-jīva] are also mentioned in the treatise Adhyātmasāra written by Upādhyāya Yaśovijaya (18th century A.D.) The verse is:

kṣadro lobharatirdīno matsarī bhayavān śaṭhaḥ |
ajño bhavābhinandī syāt niṣkalāraṃbhasaṃgataḥ ||1.30||”

Characteristics of a rejoicer o worldly existence.

mūḍhā lobhaparāḥ kūrā bhīravo'sūyakāḥ śaṭhāḥ |
bhavābhinandinaḥ santi niṣkalā''rambhakāriṇaḥ ||8.19||

Haribhadrasūri describes each characteristic briefly in the auto-commentary on verse seventy six of the text Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya. Thenafter he dilate upon various behavioural traits and aspects of the subject in question. Let us define each of the eight characteristics in brief.

Petty: kṣudraḥ-kṛpaṇaḥ—The pettiness in a person is reflexive of narrow interests and sympathies. If a petty person sees someone suffering, he would remain indifferent. He is miser not only with respect to money but also helping others physically or mentally. The reason for his pettiness is the attachment with the insignificant worldly pleasures.

Ungenerosity: lābharatiryāñcāśīlaḥ—An ungenerous person would never thought of giving or donating anything to anyone. At the same time he will never get satisfied with whatever he has. Eventhough he gets all luxuries and comforts of life, he needs more and more. His thirst for gaining more and more is unquenchable.

Miserable: dīnaḥ-sadaivā'kalyāṇadarśī—He always suffers from pain. He his unable to withstand a painful situation. Due to intense ignorance he wishes ill-being of others. By doing so he inflicts a lot of pain on his own self.

Jealousḥ matsarī-parakalyāṇaduḥsthitaḥ—He can not see anybody’s happiness. He does not appreciate any good thing of others. Instead of admiring others’ good things he becomes jealous of them.

Fear stricken: bhayavān-nityabhītaḥ—Since he is completely involved in the enjoyment of worldly objects, he always remains fear stricken from seven types of fears.

Deceitful: śaṭho-māyāvī—Due to intense crave for acquiring worldly enjoyments he cheats people to fulfill his endless desires.

Foolish: ajño-mūrkhaḥ—As he is intensely deluded, he is incapable of understanding the ultimate truth. Hence he can not think of doing good to his own soul. This is how he is ignorant about the journey of spiritual elevation.

Engaged in undertakings that bear no fruits: “sarvatrā'tattvābhiniveśāditi”. His all activities are aimed at gaining materialistic enjoyments.Therefore he never understakes any religious performances conducive to spiritual upliftment of his soul. In case he practices religious rituals, his intension is not to gain spirituality but to obtain worldly enjoyments.

Haribhadrasūri says that the understanding (bodha) of a rejoicer of worldly existence is un-admirable. Haribhadrasūri compares it with food mixed poison[6] . When a poison is added to the food it kills a living being instead of nourishing. Similary, the understanding awakens the inner wisdom of a soul and elevates him from the darkness of delusion. But when the understanding becomes un-admirable, it does not cause any spiritual benefits to a soul.

After mentioning eight popular characteristics of a rejoicer of worldly existence Haribhadrasūri describes various behavioral traits of the subject in question. We are informed that the avadyasaṃvedyapada holders are divided into two.

They are:

  1. A rejoicer of worldly existence,
  2. A beholder of any of the first four yogadṛṣṭi.

Haribhadrasūri has defined the nature of the first four yogadṛṣṭis. He has explained characteristics possessed by a beholder of first four yogadṛṣṭis. Now our author describes in detail the personality and evil behavioural traits of a rejoicer of the worldly existence who possesses the avedyasaṃvedyapada.

The rejoicer of worldly existence has adverse perception of objects. Due to adverseness in perception he favours transmigration which is useless from real stand point. He is incapable of viewing an object from manifold perspectives. He is shortsighted and concerned only with the present time. Hence he fails to see what is beneficial to the soul in long run. He can not discriminate between that which is beneficial and harmful[7] .

He is interested only in sensual pleasures which he gets from worldly objects in present time. He is least concerned about the effects of such sensual pleasures in long run. The results obtained from such temporary pleasures cause harm to his spiritual growth. However, he does not care for anything as his inner eyes of wisdom is intensely deluded. All three attributes of the subject in question pertains to eye-sight as well as vision.

Three attributes are:

  1. viparyāsa,
  2. andha and
  3. īkṣa.

The attribute, namely incapability of viewing what is beneficial and harmful (i.e “hitāhitavivekāndhāḥ”) matches with one of the previously mentioned eight characteristics of a rejoicer of worldly existence [bhavābhinandī-jīva]. It is ignorance (ajña). Due to ignorance the subject in question is unable to see his welfare from real stand point. This ignorance is nothing but an effect of intense delusion.

On one hand his is obsessed with wretched worldly pleasures that are insignificant and beget horrible consequences -like a fish who is rewarded with death for the meat attached to the fish hook (meant for catching fish). On the other hand he refrains from performing various virtuous acts conducive to attainment of religion[8] . His such type of obsession for materialistic pleasures reflects his pettiness (one of the afore mentioned eight characteristics of a rejoicer of worldly existence).

Our author attaches three adjectives to a worldly object. They, in a way, define the nature of a worldly object. It is of the nature of, tuccha, dāruṇodaya, kusukha.

The worldly object is said tuccha. A very less amount of pleasure is obtained from it. For instance eating an apple gives pleasure. However, the pleasure is experienced till the apple is on tongue. Such pleasure sustains for a moment. Hence our author defines a worldly object as tuccha. The other feature of a worldly object is dāruṇodaya i.e. it is conducive to horrible consequences. The voluptuous pleasure obtained from a worldly object generates temporary delight and causes a lot of accumulation of inauspicious karmans. When inauspicious karman, accumulated thus, fructify, they produce pain, miseries in the present birth and evil states of existence (durgati) in the next birth. Therefore our author defines a worldly object as thus. The same is well explained in Jain scriptures too. The third characteristic mark of a worldly object is kusukha. That means a worldly object offers wretched pleasure. It is called the worldly objects live shortly. They give very little pleasure and their enjoyments beget horrible consequences.

The dull witted subject in question though born in the karmabhūmīs (in Jainism we get description of fifteen karmabhūmīs. They are places where all sixty three great personages i.e. triṣaṣti śalākā puruṣa including tīrthaṅkara do take birth. The residents of these places can attain liberation in their present birth. The rejoicer of worldly existence fails to seize the opportunity of achieving spiritual growth even after being born as a human being (the best among all four gatis) in the fifteen karmabhūmīs. Such human birth is considered to be the best for imbibing the religion (i.e. practicing religious activities that join one with liberation) in one’s own life. Instead of utilizing such a precious birth to saw seeds of the religion he wastes his birth in gaining enjoyments from worldly objects[9] . This behavioral trait of the subject in question somewhat relates with the characteristic namely ‘engaged in undertaking that bear no fruits.’ It is the last characteristic out of eight afore mentioned characteristics of a rejoicer of worldly existence.

He is blind to his own spiritual welfare. He is prone to perform unworthy acts and refrain from the performance of worthy acts. Sinful activities viz. violence etc. which result into pain, are performed with the desire of getting worldly pleasure by him like a man who scratches his itching limbs[10] . Under the sway of delusion he behaves improperly without considering what ought to be done. Such behaviour makes his soul dirty with the dust like particles of the inauspicious karman[11] . This type of activity of the subject in question identify him as an ignorant one (i.e.ajña). Ajña is one of the previously mentioned characteristics of a rejoicer of worldly existence. The ignorance born out of intense delusion leads the subject in question to make two major blunders. They are: (1) To see evil deeds as something to be done and to do things that ought not to be done. (2) To be driven in the lap of misery as a result of mistaking it for happiness.

Haribhadrasūri compares worldly crave of a rejoicer of worldly existence with a person who scratches his itching limbs. Due to intense delusion he has high regard for the transmigration. Therefore, he does not perceive the insignificant, disdaining as well as tormenting worldly existence worth disliking or disgusting. The worldly existence is such due to the contingencies like birth, death, old age, chronic diseases, temporary ailments to body, mental anguish caused by separation from dear ones etc.[12] . Our author presents an example which compares the mind set of an individual who suffers from scab with the worldly inclination of the subject in question. A scab-sufferer, even though painful, enjoys itching limbs. Just like it the subject in question, though suffers from transmigration, is not ready to get rid of the very desire for obtaining worldly enjoyments[13] . The example is as following:

Once a person suffering from scab, whose nails have become blunt due to continuous scratching, meets a physician (vaidya). The physician was carrying material for itching in bulk. The former needed it. So he asked the physician that how can I get it. The compassionate physician answered that with this material you will itch more and your disease would spread. It is going to cause pain to you. Instead of doing so you take the medicine namely triphalā (a herb) to heal your disease within seven days. Listening to it the person says that if my scab will be cured, I will not be able to get the enjoyments of itching. Without this enjoyment life would be meaningless for me. Therefore I do not want the medicine but I want grass, the material for itching[14] . Similar is the mental state of the subject in question. His abundant desires for sensual pleasure beget ceaseless chain of birth and death. It again is the cause of innumerable miseries and pain. On viewing his sufferings the compassionate preceptor (here it is a compassionate physician) shows him the path that results into complete cessation of desires. However the subject in question possesses so much attachment to the desire that he is not ready to walk on the path which causes cessation of his desires for sensual pleasure. He wishes to desire more and more and seeks the means that fulfill his endless desires.

While describing the vicious behavioral traits of a rejoicer of worldly existence [bhavābhinandī-jīva], our author always states that the reason for the subject’s such character is his ignorance which has arisen from intense delusion. Thus, we may say that it is the avedyasaṃvedyapada as well as intense delusion should be are condemned and not a soul of a rejoicer of worldly existence. In short Haribhadrasūri condemns the vice and not its beholder.

Haribhadrasūri’s goal is to lead an aspirant to attain samyagdarśana and then gradually salvation. Therefore, he does not stop at the condemnation of the avedyasaṃvedyapada. He further shows the way to get rid of it. It can be won over by a noble soul (mahātman) by accompanying the saintly personages on one hand and the scriptures on the other[15] . These two ways are presented as one using singular form of third case instead of its dual form by our author[16] . The reason for it is to emphasis togetherness of these two. The one without other and vice-versa does not help the subject in question to get victory over the avedyasaṃvedyapada. Both are equally chief and prominent for it.

The co-existence of these two can be interpreted in two ways. They are:

(1) A seeker, who is desirous of getting rid of avedyasaṃvedyapada, should stay in the company of saintly personages in whose life the scriptural texts stand prominently. That is to say whose mental, physical and verbal activities are always in proper accordance with the scriptural texts.

(2) A seeker should acquire understanding of the scriptural texts from above mentioned type of saintly personages.

After stating the way to get victory over the avedyasaṃvedyapada, our author says that a noble soul is capable of doing it[17] . Now we may go in details as who is the noble soul according to our author? Here we are reminded of verse thirty three of the text Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya, where Haribhadrasūri addresses a carmāvartin soul as a noble soul (mahātman). In order to discriminate an acarmāvartin bhavābhinandin soul from a carmāvartin first four yogadṛṣṭis beholder, Haribhadrasūri uses a word mahātman for the later one. Haribhadrasūri knows very well the nature of a rejoicer of worldly existence [bhavābhinandī-jīva]. Haribhadrasūri knows that a rejoicer of worldly existence has so much imbibed the avedyasaṃvedyapada in him that there is no chance of getting rid of it. But the carmāvartin soul (who may or may not has acquired any of the first four yogadṛṣṭis) would be surely capable of winning the avedyasaṃvedyapada. Therefore our compassionate author clarifies it by saying that winning the avedyasaṃvedyapada is not a cup of tea for a rejoicer of worldly existence but for a noble soul (mahātman = who is carmāvartin and beholder of any of the first four yogadṛṣṭi).

Footnotes and references:


avedyasaṃvedyapadaṃ..............| bhavābhinandiviṣayaṃ,...............| ||75||


bhavābhinandī-saṃsārabahumānī,....... ||76||
   –Auto-commentary of Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya.


J odyadṛṣṭiḥ - sāmānyadarśanaṃ bhavābhinandisattvaviṣayā |... ||14||


| bhavābhinandī — “asāro'pyeṣa saṃsāraḥ sāravāniva lakṣyate | dadhi-dugdhāmbu-tāmbūla-paṇya-paṇyāṅganādibhiḥ ||” ( ) katyādivacanaiḥ saṃsārā'bhinandanaśīlaḥ...||10.5||
   -Tattvārthadīpikā (an auto-commentary on Dvātriṃśad Dvātriṃśikā by Upādhyāya Yaśovijaya).

The same lines are found in commentary of the text Yogabindu composed by Haribhadra. (There is a dispute among scholars regarding the commentary of the text Yogabindu. Some believe that the commentary is written by Haribhadra whereas others think that someone else wrote it.).


kṣudro lābharatirdīno, matsarī bhayavān śaṭhaḥ |
ajño bhavābhinandī syā-nniṣph lārambhasaṅgataḥ ||76||


katyasatpariṇāmānu-viddho bodho na sundaraḥ |
tatsaṅgādeva niyamād, viṣasampṛktakānnavat ||77||


etadvanto'ta eveha, viparyāsaparā narāḥ |
hitāhitavivekāndhāḥ, khidyante sāmpratekṣiṇaḥ ||78||


baḍiśāmiṣavattucche, kusukhe dārūṇodaye |
saktāstyajanti sacceṣṭāṃ, dhigaho ! dāruṇaṃ tamaḥ ||84||


dharmabījaṃ paraṃ prāpya, mānuṣyaṃ karmabhūmiṣu |
na satkarmakṛṣāvasya, prayatante'lpamodhasaḥ ||83||

dharmabījaṃ-dharmakāraṇaṃ para-pradhānaṃ prāpyā''sādya, kiṃ tadityāha-mānucyaṃ-mānuṣatvaṃ, kve tyāha-karmabhūmiṣu-bharatādyāsu | kimityāha-na satkarmakṛṣau-dharmabījādhānādirūpāyāṃ asyadharmabījasya prayatante'lpamoghasaḥ-alyamataya katyarthaḥ ||83||

Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya and its auto-commentary.


kukṛtyaṃ kṛtyamābhāti, kṛtyaṃ cā'kṛtyavat sadā |
duḥkhe sukhadhiyā''kṛṣṭāḥ, kacchūkaṇḍūyakādivat ||80||


ātmānaṃ pānsayantyete, sadā'sacceṣṭayā bhṛśam |
pāpadhūlyā jaḍāḥ kārya-mavicāryaiva tattvataḥ ||82||


janmamṛtyujarāvyādhi- rogaśokādyupadrutam |
vīkṣamāṇā api bhavaṃ, nodvijante'timohataḥ ||79||

janma-prādurbhāvalakṣaṇaṃ, mṛtyuḥ-prāṇatyāgarupaḥ jarā-vayohānyātmikā, vyādhiḥ-kuṣṭhādilakṣaṇaḥ, rogo- viśucikādyātaṅkaḥ, śoka-kaṣṭaviyogādijomanovikāraḥ,...... ||79||

Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya and its auto-commentary.


yathā kaṇḍūyaneṣveṣāṃ, dhīrna kacchūnivarttane |
bhogāṅgeṣu tathaiteṣāṃ, na tadicchaparikṣaye ||81||

akṣāragamanikā tu-yathā kaṇḍūyaneṣu - tṛṣṇoṣveṣāṃ-kacchūkaṇḍūyakānāṃ dhīrbuddhistattvānabhijñatayā, na kacchūnivartane duḥkhānubhavavikārabhāvāt | bhogāṅgeṣu-stryādiṣu tathaiteṣām — avedyasaṃvedyapadavatāṃ bhavābhinandināṃ dhīrna tadicchaparikṣaye — na bhogocchanivṛttau tattvānabhijñatayaiva, vayaḥ paripāke'pi vājīkaraṇādarāt | kacchagrahaṇamiha bhogakriyopalakṣaṇam ||81||

Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya and its auto-commentary.


kasyacit kaṇḍūyakasya kaṇḍūnātirekāt parikṣīṇanakhasya sikatākṣitinivāsāt kathaścidnavāptatṛṇakaṇḍūvinodakasya bhikṣāpuṭikāyai gṛhītatṛṇapūlakena vaidyapathikena darśana babhūva | sa tena tṛṇamokaṃ yācito, dattaṃ cā'nena tat tasmai | parituṣṭo'sau hṛdayena | cintitaṃ ca satoṣam — ‘aho dhanyaḥ khalvayaṃ yasyaitāvanti kaṇḍūyanāni’| pṛṣṭaśca sa — ‘kva khalvetānyevamatiprabhūtānyavāpyante ? | tenokta-‘lāṭadeśādau, kiṃ vā tavaibhiḥ prayojanaṃ ?’ | tenoktaṃ-‘kacchūkaṇḍūvinodanam’ | pathikastvāha-‘yadyaivaṃ, tataḥ kimobhiḥ ? kacchūmaiva te’ ‘kacchvapagamo kaṇḍūvinodābhāvāt kiṃ phalaṃ jīvitasya ? tadalaṃ triphalayā, kvai tānyavāpyata katyetadeva kathaye’ti ślokagarbhārthaḥ |......||81||
   –Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya and its auto-commentary.


satsaṅgāgamayogona, jeyamotanmahātmabhiḥ ||85||


| satsaṅgāgamayogona — viśiṣṭa saṅga - āgama - sambandhenetyarthaḥ, ekavadbhāva ubhayaprādhānyakhyāpanaparaḥ ||85||
   –Auto-commentary of Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya.


| jeyamotadavedyasaṃvedyapadaṃ mahātmabhiḥ - pumbhiḥ, asyāmova bhūmikāyāmanyadā jetumaśakyatvāt |
ata evā ‘'nuvādaparo'pyāgama’ kati yogācāryāḥ, ayogyaniyogāsiddheriti ||85||
   –Auto-commentary of Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya.

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