Category: Jainism
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Sūtrakṛtāṅga सूत्रकृताङ्ग (also known in Prakrit as Sūyagaḍaṃga सूयगडंग) is the second agama of the 12 main aṅgās of the Jain Svetambara canon.







One should know what causes the bondage of Soul, and knowing (it) one should remove it.

(Gambûsvâmin asked Sudharman):

What causes the bondage (of Soul) according to Mahâvîra? and what must one know in order to remove it? (1)

(Sudharman answered):

He who owns even a small property in living or lifeless things or consents to others holding it, will not be delivered from misery. (2)

If a man kills living beings, or causes other men to kill them, or consents to their killing them, his iniquity will go on increasing. (3)

A sinner who makes the interests of his kinsmen and companions his own, will suffer much; for the number of those whose interest he takes to heart constantly increases. (4)

All this, his wealth and his nearest relations, cannot protect him (from future misery); knowing (this) and (the value of) life, he will get rid of Karman. (5)

Some men Sramanas and Brâhmanas, who ignore and deny these true words adhere (to their own tenets), and are given to pleasures. (6)

Some profess (the exclusive belief in) the five gross elements: earth, water, fire, wind, and air. (7)

‘These five gross elements (are the original causes of things), from them arises another (thing, viz. âtman) for on the dissolution of the (five elements) living beings cease to exist.’ (8)

‘And as the Earth, though it is but one pile, presents many forms, so the intelligent (principle, viz. the âtman) appears under various forms as the universe .’ (9)

Thus say some fools. (But how can they explain on their theory that) the man engaging in undertakings, who has committed a sin, will himself suffer severe pain. (10)

‘Everybody, fool or sage, has an individual soul.’ These souls exist (as long as the body), but after death they are no more; there are no souls which are born again. (11)

‘There is neither virtue nor vice, there is no world beyond; on the dissolution of the body the individual ceases to be.’ (12)

‘When a man acts or causes another to act, it is not his soul (âtman) which acts or causes to act .’ Thus they (viz. the adherents of the Sâṅkhya philosophy) boldly proclaim. (13)

How can those who hold such opinions explain (the variety of existence in) the world? They go from darkness to utter darkness, being fools and engaged in works. (14)

Some say that there are five elements and that the soul is a sixth (substance), but they contend that the soul and the world (i.e. the five elements) are eternal. (15)

‘These (six substances) do not perish neither (without nor with a cause); the non-existent does not come into existence, but all things are eternal by their very nature .’ (16)

Some fools say that there are five skandhas of momentary existence. They do not admit that (the soul) is different from, nor identical with (the elements), that it is produced from a cause (i.e. the elements), nor that it is without a cause (i.e. that it is eternal). (17)

The Gânayas say that there are four elements: earth, water, fire, and wind, which combined form the body (or soul?). (18)

(All these heretics say): ‘Those who dwell in houses, in woods, or on hills, will be delivered from all misery if they adopt our creed.’ (19)

But they do not cross the Flood of Life, who, ignoring the true relation of things, and not versed in the true Law, hold the above heretical opinions. (20)

They do not reach the end of the Samsâra, who, ignoring, &c. (21)

They do not reach the end of transmigration, who, &c. (22)

They do not put an end to birth, who, &c. (23)

They do not put an end to misery, who, &c. (24)

They do not put an end to death, who, &c. (25)

They will again and again experience manifold pains in this ring of the earth, which is full of death, disease, and old age. (26)

The highest Gina, Mahâvîra the âtriputra, has said that they will undergo births without number, being placed in all sorts of existences. (27)

Thus I say.


Again some say: ‘It is proved that there are individual souls; they experience pleasure and pain; and (on dying) they lose their state of life.’ (1)

‘But misery (and pleasure) is not caused by (the souls) themselves; how could it be caused by other (agents, as time, &c.)? Pleasure and misery, final beatitude and temporal (pleasure and pain) are not caused by (the souls) themselves, nor by others; but the individual souls experience them; it is the lot assigned them by destiny.’ This is what they (i.e. the fatalists) say. (2, 3)

Those who proclaim these opinions, are fools who fancy themselves learned; they have no knowledge, and do not understand that things depend partly on fate, and partly on human exertion (4)

Thus (say) some heretics they are very bold men; if they act up to their principles, they will never be delivered from misery. (5)

As the swift deer who are destitute of protection, are frightened where there is no danger, and not frightened where there is danger; (6)

(As) they dread safe places, but do not dread traps; they are bewildered by ignorance and fear, and run hither and thither; (7)

If they did jump over the noose or pass under it, they would escape from the snare; but the stupid animal does not notice it; (8)

The unhappy animal, being of a weak intellect, runs into the dangerous (place), is caught in the snare, &c., and is killed there; (9)

So some unworthy Sramanas who hold wrong doctrines are afraid of what is free from danger, and are not afraid of real dangers. (10)

The fools dread the preaching of the Law, but they do not dread works, being without discernment and knowledge. (11)

Shaking off greed pride deceit and wrath one becomes free from Karman. This is a subject (which an ignorant man, like) a brute animal, does not attend to. (12)

The unworthy heretics who do not acknowledge this, will incur death an endless number of times, like deer caught in a snare. (13)

All Brâhmanas and Sramanas contend that they possess the knowledge (of the truth), but the creatures in the whole world do not know anything. (14)

As a Mlêkkha repeats what an Ârya has said, but does not understand the meaning, merely repeating his words, so the ignorant, though pretending to possess knowledge, do not know the truth, just as an uninstructed Mlêkkha. (15, 16)

The speculations of the Agnostics cannot lead to knowledge; they cannot reach the truth by themselves, still less teach it to other men. (17)

As when a man in a wood who does not know it, follows a guide who also does not know it, both being unacquainted (with the place), come to great trouble; (18)

As when one blind man is the guide of another, the man walks a great distance, loses his way, or follows a wrong way; (19)

Thus some who search after salvation and pretend to practise the (true) Law, follow the false Law and do not arrive at the thoroughly right (thing, viz. self-control). (20)

Thus some (wrong philosophers) do not apply to others for arguments, but they continue to err because they believe their own arguments to be right (21)

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