Aṅgavijjā - A Study [Abstract]

Published: 09.10.2010
Updated: 30.12.2010
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International Conference

on

Jainism Through the Ages

A Historical Perspective

8th, 9th & 10th October 2010

Mysore, India


Abstract

The present Indian literature has flown in three main streams, viz. Sanskrit, pali and prakrit. Each of them witnessed enormous range of creative activity. Like others prakrit literature presents enormous amazing phenomenon in the field of Indian literary activity.The original Jaina sacred literature i.e. the teachings of Lord Mahavira are compiled in Ardhamagadhi Prakrit. During this long period of time of twenty six centuries a vast body of religious and secular literature came into existence. Fortunately this literature is of intrinsic value as a perennial source of Indian Literary and cultural history. “Aṅgavijja” is an exceptionally rich source of Indian cultural history. It has preserved valuable lists appertaining to the realia of Indian life.


Aṅgavijja is a prakirnaka text written almost in Maharashtri prakrit language although effect of other languages can be clearly seen in the text frequently. It is an anonymous text. The author of this text is unknown and its only seven to ten manuscripts at different libraries which are not in good condition too.

It is a voluminous text possessing sixty chapters and about nine thousand verses. Only edited form of this text is available and yet no Sanskrit, hindi or English translation is done. It is a text of prognostications i.e. Nimitta shastra. Thereare basically eight nimittas and aṅga is one of the most important nimitta. Aṅga is defined as the science of prognostication by means of external and internal manifestation of signs. The contents are manifold and difficulty in interpretation is very crucial. The language is full of technical terms and long lists of the objects of daily use in early centuries. Although it is very difficult to find the exact meaning of them but they are very important to understand the Indian life during those times. Hence it is very essential to take up a serious study of this text.

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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Ardhamagadhi
  2. Aṅga
  3. Body
  4. JAINA
  5. Jaina
  6. Jainism
  7. Jainism Through The Ages
  8. Mahavira
  9. Mysore
  10. Nimitta
  11. Pali
  12. Prakrit
  13. Sanskrit
  14. Science
  15. Shastra
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