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Acharanga Bhasyam: Sūtras 57-74 : Acquisitiveness And Its Evils

Published: 22.11.2010
Updated: 02.07.2015

2.57 jīvīyaṃ puḍho piyaṃ ihamegesiṃ māṇavāṇaṃ khettavatthu mamāya- māṇāṇaṃ.

To some people, a highly prosperous life is dear, owing to their clinging to land and property.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 57

The desires are manifold. Some people desire only for fortune and power. An ostentatious and prosperous life alone is dear to them. They have strong clinging to land and property.

2.58 ārataṃ virattaṃ maṇikuṃḍalaṃ saha hiraṇṇeṇa, ithiyāo parigijjha tattheva rattā.

They gather clothes of different colours, precious gems, ear-rings, precious metals like gold and silver and women, and cling to them.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 58

Such people have lust for clothes dyed with kusumbha flowers [1] and various other colours, and also precious stones, ear-rings, precious metals like gold and silver, and women.

People accumulate clothes for protection of the body, precious gems and ornaments for adorning the body; they amass precious metals and wealth for maintenance of life, and women for enlarging family; when utility is replaced by clinging, the knot of 'mine'-ness becomes invincible. The Sūtra  has disclosed this truth.

2.59 ṇa ettha tavo vā, damo vā, ṇiyamo vā dissati.

Neither penance, nor self-control, nor self-discipline is found in such persons.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 59

It is not possible to find penance, restraint, or discipline in persons who have possessions or lust for possessions. On account of their possessions, they always suffer from anger and anguish. The agonised mind can hardly think of penance and restraint.

'Penance' means conquering taste and successfully practising the postures, etc.

Self-control means conquering the senses and restraining the passions.

Self-discipline means abstaining from the objects of enjoyment (consumable and usable) for a limited period.[2]

2.60 saṃpuṇṇaṃ bāle jīviukāme lālappamāṇe mūḍhe vippariyāsicvei.

The ignorant person who desires to live an unhindered prosperous life, and hankers after pleasures meets the reverse (i.e. suffering) in life under the sway of delusion.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 60

An ignorant person with the ambition of living a trouble-free and prosperous life hankers after pleasures, time and again. But on account of his excessive lust for possessions, he is thwarted in his ambition. He desires pleasures but gets suffering.[3]

2.61 iṇameva ṇāvakaṃkhaṃti, je jaṇā dhuvacāriṇo. jātī-maraṇaṃ pariṇṇāya, care saṃkamaṇe daḍhe..

People exerting for the state of eternal liberation do not like such reversal. Therefore, comprehending the cycle of birth and death, one should tread on the firm causeway of non-possession.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 61

The aspirants who realize the evil consequences of clinging to possessions are inclined toward liberation, that is they are heading towards the eternal state of liberation. They do not hanker after the life that is fleeting though prosperous, and is full of perversions and prejudices. The singular result of the possessive clinging is birth and death and transmigration through many species of life and experience of the status of blindness and the like. Comprehending this, a person free from delusion should travel on a steady path, that is, the causeway leading to emancipation. The implication is that he should tread the path of non-possession.

2.62  ṇatthi kālassa ṇāgamo.

There is no moment inaccessible to death.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 62

The reason for abandoning the fleeting and moving towards the eternal is indicated here. A person usually hankers after a prosperous life. But how long does such prosperity continue? There is no moment inaccessible to death. There is no moment when death cannot visit a being. There is every chance of death at any moment, in day or night, childhood, youth or old age. Advance towards the eternal, therefore, is the desideratum. The person thus advancing is always vigilant and vice-versa.

2.63 sawe pāṇā piyāuyā suhasāyā dukkhapaḍikūlā appiyavahā piyajīviṇo jīviukāmā.

2.64 sawesiṃ jīviyaṃ piyaṃ.

2.65 taṃ parigijjha dupayaṃ cauppayaṃ abhijumjiyāṇaṃ saṃsiṃciyāṇaṃ tivieṇaṃ jā vi se tattha mattā bhavai - appā vā bahugā vā.

(63-65) All beings love long life, relish happiness, hate suffering, dislike torture, love to live, desire for life. To everyone life is dear. However, the person addicted to possession owns the biped, the quadruped and engage them in service by force to multiply his wealth. By triple effort, he amasses wealth in small or big quantity.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtras 63-65

Violence is committed for possession's sake. Humans and animals are also subjugated. In the three Sūtras, the accumulation of possession is shown to be done by means of violence. Life is dear to everybody, pleasurable feelings are favourable to all. Suffering is repugnant, torture is distasteful, a life rich in enjoyments is dear to all. They desire to live free from premature and untimely death.[4]

Everybody wants to live an independent life. Nobody likes domination by others. But, nevertheless, a person, attached to possessions, takes hold of the life of the biped and quadruped and accumulate fortune, engaging them forcibly in his service.                                              

Such person succeeds in acquiring wealth and property, small or large, in triple way: by the effort of himself, of others or of both, or by the exertion of mind, speech and body. As a result he becomes a millionaire or even multimillionaire.

The truth that "Happiness is loved and sufferings loathed" has been discussed here in the context of acquisitiveness. One who amasses wealth endeavours to get rid of his miseries and acquire happiness. While doing so, he does not care if he ruins the happiness of others. He forgets the fact that just as he likes happiness and loathes sufferings, others also do so. In the field of commerce and trade, dishonesty and exploitation practised in society are nothing but the results of losing sight of the above fact. Bhagvān Mahāvīra has repeatedly stressed this point and admonished that conduct should be based on the precept of self-equality.

2.66se tattha gaḍhie ciṭṭhai bhoyaṇāe.

2.67 tao se egayā viparisiṭṭhaṃ saṃbhūyaṃ mahovagaraṇaṃ bhavai.

2.68 taṃ pi se egayā dāyāyā vibhayaṃti, adattahāro vā se avaharati, rāyāṇo vā se viluṃpaṃti, ṇassati vā se, viṇassati vā se, agāradāhiṇa vā se ḍajjāi.

(66-68) He gets ensnared in fortune for its enjoyment. Then at one time, his manifold savings grow into a large fortune; at another time his fortune is divided by relatives among themselves, or stolen by the thief, or confiscated by the king, or is lost, or destroyed or burnt in housefire.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtras 66-68

Such person is overwhelmed with lust for the accumulated wealth. He needs wealth for enjoyment, and so develops delusive attachment to it.

Now he strives for preserving his wealth and sometimes his savings become huge and grow to a big quantity. He lives in luxury, heaps of wealth.

The accumulated wealth generates ambition in many people. This is an objective truth. Such wealth has three phases: acquisition, enjoyment and destruction. Here the third phase is shown as an inevitable consequence. Sometimes the relatives divide his big savings among themselves; sometimes it is stolen by the thieves, or confiscated by the king (or the state), or lost, or destroyed,[5] or reduced to ashes when the house is on fire.

2.69 iti se parassa aṭṭhāe kūrāiṃ kammāiṃ bāle pakuwamāṇe teṇa dukkheṇa mūḍhe vippariyāsuvei.

In this way, the ignorant person engaged in cruel acts for the sake of others is bewildered by his suffering and has a setback (i.e. loss of fortune).

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 69

The ignorant person commits cruel deeds for earning money mainly for the members of his family. On account of the cruel and heinous deeds, he incurs suffering and is deluded[6] by it. Consequently, he falls into misfortune. In other words, while hankering after pleasures, he meets suffering.[7]

2.70  muṇiṇā hu eyaṃ paveiyaṃ.

This has been proclaimed by the Jina.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 70

This truth has been revealed by Lord Mahāvīra, the omniscient ascetic.

2.71 aṇohaṃtarā ete, no ya ohaṃ tarittae. atīraṃgamā ete, no ya tīraṃ gamittae. apāraṃgamā ete, no ya pāraṃ gamittae..

They do not cross the flood of suffering, nor are they able to. They do not cross on to other shore, nor are they able to. They do not go to the opposite bank nor are they able to.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 71

The cruel people attached to their possessions are unfit to cross the stream of suffering, that is, they are incapable of overcoming the flood of suffering in the ocean of Saṃsāra. They cannot cross to over the other side of that tide to reach the other bank. Such people cannot reach the end of the ocean of suffering.

There is internal relationship between possession and cruelty. With the increase of possessions there is decrease of the tenderness of heart and increase in cruelty. The history of mankind stands witness to this. Tenderness of heart is the way to freedom from suffering. Cruelty creates problems in social relations and hinders one from crossing the ocean of suffering.

2.72 āyāṇijjaṃ ca āyāya, tammi ṭṭhāṇe ṇa ciṭṭai. vitahaṃ pappa kheyaṇṇe, tammi ṭhāṇammi ciṭṭhai..

Accepting the acceptable (non-possessiveness) the ignorant person does not stick to it. Having access to the untrue (i.e. possessiveness), he sticks to it.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 72

Here 'acceptable' stands for non-possessiveness. A person ignorant of himself accepts non-possessiveness, but does not stick to it. On his access to the untrue (i.e. possessiveness), he remains addicted to it.

A person ignorant of himself is not capable of avoiding his clinging to possessions of worldly objects. Sometimes, somehow he even accepts the acceptable, but in the absence of the power of discrimination between soul and matter, he does not adhere to it which is possible only on the acquisition of the power of discrimination.

2.73 uddeso pāsagassa ṇatthi.

There is no designation for the seer.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 73

The person who sees the objective truth is a seer. There is no designation for him'. 'Designation' means the description, for example, the naming of a person as happy, miserable, angry, proud, deceitful, greedy, rich, poor etc.

The seer transcends such designations and always experiences his self-nature and avoids conceptual vagaries.[8]

2.74 bāle puṇa ṇihe kāmasamaṇuṇṇe asamiyadukkhe dukkhī dukkhāṇameva āvaṭṭaṃ aṇupariyaṭṭai.—tti bemi.

An ignorant person is but full of affection. He desires for pleasurable things. His suffering is not mitigated. Being miserable, he rotates in the whirl of suffering - Thus do I say.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 74

A person who is ignorant and not a seer is filled with affection and desires for sensual objects. He is not able to calm down his suffering arising from sensual objects and possessions. With unmitigated suffering, he lives in miserable condition. Because of his physical and mental suffering, he revolves in the whirl of miseries.

The ignorant person is designated as happy, miserable, angry etc.[9]


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Jain Vishwa Bharati

Ladnun- 341 306 (Raj.) India © Jain Vishva Bharti

ISBNS 1-7195-74-4

First Edition:2001

Courtesy :
Shree Chhotulal Sethia Charitable Trust Sethia House, 23/24,
Radha Bazar Street, Kolkata-700 001 (INDIA)

Printed by:
Shree Vardhaman Press
Delhi (INDIA)

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Page glossary
Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Anger
  2. Body
  3. Cūrṇi
  4. Discipline
  5. Jina
  6. Karmas
  7. Mahāvīra
  8. Omniscient
  9. Saṃsāra
  10. Soul
  11. Sūtra
  12. Violence
  13. Vṛtti
  14. Ācārāṅga
  15. Āyāro
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