Microcosmology: Atom In Jain Philosophy & Modern Science ► 05 ► [5.15] Atomic Theory And Paramanuvada - Synthesis Of Paramanus Into Composite Bodies

Posted: 17.04.2008

We had discussed the nature of various forces, which are responsible for the disintegration, and integration of material ob­jects by interaction between material particles.

In modern physics, the forces of interactions between the matter-particles are also supposed to be carried by other par­ticles. Out of the four types of forces found in nature, the gravita­tion force, which is the weakest of the four, has practically no effect in the synthesis of subatomic particles into composite bodies. The electromagnetic attraction between - vely charged electrons and + vely charged protons in the nucleus binds together the constituents of an atom and is responsible for the stability of each atom. This force also binds together atoms of different ele­ments into complex molecules of innumerable chemical com­pounds.

Then, there is the weak nuclear force, which is recently unified with electromagnetic force.

And finally, there is the strong nuclear force which is many times greater than the electromagnetic force and which acts as the cosmic cement which binds together the subatomic particles of the nucleus of an atom and prevents its breaking up.

The qualities snigdha and ruksa sparsa, according to the Jain view, play the most important role in the synthesis of different paramanus for the formation of atoms, molecules and small and large objects of matter. The intensity of these two primary qualities varies from a single unit to infinite units in different paramanus-that is, at a given moment, some paramanus have a single unit of glueyness, some are with two units, some with three and so on upto infinity. At the same time, there will be some paramanus with a single unit of dryness, some with two units and so on upto infinity. A summary of the rules in respect of the synthesis of different paramanus is as under:

  1. Synthesis of paramanus having single units of dryness or glueyness is not possible either with one another or with paramanus of higher intensities.
  2. Synthesis of paramanus having two or more units of dryness is possible with other dry paramanus provided there is a difference of two or more units between them. Similarly mutual synthesis of gluey paramanus is pos­sible only if the difference of their intensities is two or more units.
  3. Synthesis of paramanus having two or more units of dryness with all unctuous paramanus (except those with a single unit) is possible1 .

The following points of similarity between the views of Jains and the modern science emerge from the above:

The dryness and glueyness have been equated by us with the - ive and + ive electric charges of the elementary particles respectively2. The interaction of the electronic shells of neighbouring atoms in a molecule, which creates the chemical bond necessary to keep them united, is then equivalent to the interac­tion and union between paramanus of same type of sparsa i.e. sparsa equivalent to - ive charge. The first completed shell con­sists of two electrons. The minimum difference between the unit­ing paramanus of similar sparsa is two units. The quality of mass or guru-laghu sparsa does not play any significant role in the process of synthesis of subatomic particles or paramanus.


  1. See pp. 105-107 in chapter II
  2. See p. 191 in this chapter
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