Acharanga Bhasyam: Sūtras 17-20 : Non-Violence

Published: 09.05.2011
Updated: 02.07.2015

8.17 uḍḍhaṃ ahaṃ tiriyaṃ disāsu, savvato savvāvaṃti ca ṇaṃ paḍiyakkaṃ jῑvehiṃ kamma-samāraṃbheṇaṃ.

Different kinds of violent activities are perpetrated unto all kinds of living beings, in all directions, above, below, lateral, surface and sideways.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 17

In all directions above and the like, at all times, in various ways, violence is done to all kinds of living beings. Even among many classes of ascetics, acts like cooking involve injury to life was prevalent.[1] What has been indicated about such activities here has been propounded in the next Sūtra.

8.18 tam parinnāya mehāvī neva sayam etehim kāehim dam dam-samārambhejjā, nevannehim etehim kāehim damdam samārambhāvejjā, nevanne etehim kāehim damdam samārambhamte vi samanujānejjā.

Comprehending this, the intelligent should not indulge himself in injury to the subtle living beings, nor should he commend people engaged in such activities.

Bhāsyam Sūtra 18

The gist is that an intelligent person should discern the nature of violent activity and as a result abstain from injurious indulging in respect of the earth-bodied beings and the like. Such abstinence should be practised through the three instruments of thought, word, deed and three modes of activity such as doing himself, getting done by others and approve of others indulgence in such activities. This is the moral code of the monk. He is dedicated to the practice of the great vow of non-violence. He has abandoned all violent activities through the three instruments and three modes of activities. Such practice is possible only for a monk completely devoted to the principle of non-violence. It is not possible for anybody else.

8.19 jevaṇṇe etehiṃ kāehiṃ daṃḍaṃ samāraṃbhaṃti, tesiṃ pi vayaṃ lajjāmo.

We pity for the monks who indulge in injury to the subtle living beings.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 19

(The ascetics practising the great vow of non-violence feel:) 'Whosoever among the monks inflict injury on these earth-bodied beings and the like, we shun their company, or have mercy on them.[2] The reason for mercy is that they have no compassion for the subtle living beings inspite of their having accepted monkhood. As monk, they have equal status with us. This is why we feel ashamed on account of their indifference to the feeling of compassion for these beings'.

8.20 taṃ pariṇṇāya mehāvī taṃ vā daṃḍaṃ, aṇṇaṃ vā daṃḍaṃ, ṇo daṃḍdabhī daṃḍaṃ samāraṃbhejjāsi. - tti bemi.

Having discerningly relinquished actions involving violence, the wise monk, out of fear of causing violence, abstains from inflicting any kind of injury, as mentioned before or otherwise—Thus do I say.

Bhāṣyaṃ Sūtra 20

Freedom from fear is the essential cause of the practice of non-violence. A cowardly person cannot practice non-violence. Only the person who is completely free from fear is afraid of indulging in violence. There is no incompatibility between 'freedom from fear' and 'dread for violence'. Only the person who is afraid of killing living beings, has dread for violence. Such person is not himself frightened by living beings, nor does he frighten others. Therefore, he is free from fear. And only he who is free from fear abstains from violent activities.


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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. Cūrṇi
  2. Fear
  3. Non-violence
  4. Sayam
  5. Sūtra
  6. Violence
  7. Ācārāṅga
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