09.05.2015 ►FIU ►Lecture: Violence and Nonviolence in Acharanga ►Samani Chaitanya Prajna

Posted: 12.05.2015
Updated on: 02.07.2015



Jain Education and Research Foundation

Florida International University


Samani Chaitanya Prajna is the Professor of Jainology and Comparative Religion and Philosophy and Executive Director of BMIRC at Jain Vishva Bharati Institute (Deemed University), Ladnun, Rajasthan, India. She has published 3 books including Scientific Vision of Lord Mahavira (2005), Fundamental Elements of Jainism (2008), Jainism in Modern Perspectives (2014). She has taught at Florida International University and served Jain Foundation of Education and Research for three years from 2010-2013 in Miami USA. She has also served as the member of Academic Council of the International School for Jain Studies (Delhi) in 2005-6. She has been the editor of the JERF Newsletter for three years.

Outlines of the Lecture on Violence and Nonviolence in Acharanga

Religiously speaking Jainism is a purely spiritual tradition. It starts with the knowledge of the self and ends with the realization of the pure and divine self. Being spiritual in nature it is deeply rooted in nonviolence. Self-restraint and observance of various types of penance are two supportive practices of non-violence. Non-possession is another necessary condition to be nonviolent. It is the greed or attachment to land, money, natural resources etc. which causes violence. Philosophically speaking it is a non-absolutist tradition. The doctrine of non-absolutism is important to understand multi-dimensional reality. It also helps dissolve individual, social and cultural conflicts and thereby promotes social harmony. This lecture will explore the concept of violence and non-violence in various contexts on the basis of Acharanga. The following will, therefore, be the main points o

  1. Acharanga: Text and Context
  2. Violence: Cause and Effect
  3. Non-violence: Philosophy and Practice


Acharanga: Text and Context


Violence: Cause and Effect


  • Acharanga Bhasyam (Chapter I.5-13, 19-30, 38-65, 66-89, 91, 101, 113, 118-175; Chapter IV.1-39) Commentary by Acharya Mahaprajna, (Ladnun: Jain Vishva Bharati, edn. 1st, 2001), ISBN: 81-7195-74-4, pp 1-92, 241-355 on Blackboard Shell
  • Praśnavyākaraņasūtra (Chapters 1,6), ed. by Madhukar Muni, (Byavar: Agam Prakashan Samiti, 1983), Translation available on Blackboard Shell

Nonviolence: Philosophy and Practice


  • Dasaveāliyam (Chapter 4.3-10, 18-23;Chapter 6.8-12, 24-47and Chapter 7.1-3,11-13, 21-42) trans. and ed. by Acharya Mahapragya, (Ladnun: Jain Vishva Bharati, edn. 1st, 1965), Translation available on Blackboard Shell
  • Tattvārtha Sūtra (Chapter 7.1-8, 19, 20), That Which Is –Tattvārtha Sūtra of Umāsvāti, trans. by Nathmal Tatia (NY: HarperCollins, 1994). ISBN: 0-06-068985-4, pp 169-174, 179-178 on Blackboard Shell
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