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A History of Indian Philosophy, Volume 1

The Digambaras have a similar outfit


(825 A.D.), _Yogas'astra_ of Hemacandra (1088-1172 A.D.), and _Prama@nanayatattvalokala@mkara_ of Deva Suri (1086-1169 A.D.). I am indebted for these dates to Vidyabhu@sa@na's _Indian Logic_.

It may here be mentioned that the Jains also possess a secular literature of their own in poetry and prose, both Sanskrit and Prakrit. There are also many moral tales (e.g. _Samaraicca-kaha, Upamitabhavaprapanca-katha_ in Prakrit, and the _Yas'astilaka_ of Somadeva and Dhanapala's _Tilakamanjari_); Jaina Sanskrit poems both in the Pura@na and Kavya style and hymns in Prakrit and Sanskrit are also very numerous. There are also many Jaina dramas. The Jaina authors have also contributed many works, original treatises as well as commentaries, to the scientific literature of India in its various branches: grammar, biography, metrics, poetics, philosophy, etc. The contributions of the Jains to logic deserve special notice [Footnote ref 1].

Some General Characteristics of the Jains.

The Jains exist only in India and their number is a little less than a million and a half. The Digambaras are found chiefly in Southern India but also in the North, in the North-western provinces, Eastern Rajputana and the Punjab. The head-quarters of the S'vetambaras are in Gujarat and Western Rajputana, but they are to be found also all over Northern and Central India.

The outfit of a monk, as Jacobi describes it, is restricted to bare necessaries, and these he must beg--clothes, a blanket, an alms-bowl, a stick, a broom to sweep the ground, a piece of cloth to cover his mouth when speaking lest insects should enter it [Footnote ref 2]. The outfit of nuns is the same except that they have additional clothes. The Digambaras have a similar outfit, but keep no clothes, use brooms of peacock's feathers or hairs of the tail of a cow (_camara_) [Footnote ref 3]. The monks shave the head or remove the hair by plucking it out. The latter method of getting rid of the hair is to be preferred, and is regarded sometimes as an essential rite. The duties of monks are very hard. They should sleep only three hours and spend the rest of the time in repenting of and expiating sins, meditating, studying, begging alms (in the afternoon), and careful inspection of their clothes and other things for the removal of insects. The laymen should try to approach the ideal of conduct of the monks


[Footnote 1: See Jacobi's article on Jainism. _E.R.E._]

[Footnote 2: See Jacobi, _loc. cat._]

[Footnote 3: See _@Sa@ddars'anasamuccaya_, chapter IV.]


by taking upon themselves particular vows, and the monks are required to deliver sermons and explain the sacred texts in the upas'rayas (separate buildings for monks like the Buddhist viharas). The principle of extreme carefulness not to destroy any living being has been in monastic life carried out to its very last consequences, and has shaped the conduct of the laity in a great measure. No layman will intentionally kill any living being, not even an insect, however troublesome. He will remove it carefully without hurting it. The principle of not hurting any living being thus bars them from many professions such as agriculture, etc., and has thrust them into commerce [Footnote ref 1].

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