Unique Teachings of Jainism
• God is not a Creator, Preserver or Destroyer of the Universe
• Every living being has a potential to become God
• Conquer your desire by your own effort to attain liberation

Proper knowledge of universal substances and the nine fundamentals are essential for enlightened intuition and knowledge.
• Self purification, penance, austerity and meditation are essential parts of enlightened conduct

The essence of Jainism
Ahimsa (Non violence)
Anekantvad (Non one-sidedness/Non absolutism)
Aparigraha (Non possessiveness/Non-attachment)

• Ahimsa is disciplined behavior towards every living being – Dashvaikalika Sutra (6/9)
• Absence of violence of any sort towards all beings at all times is Ahimsa. – Yogasutra
• In its absolute definition, ‘Ahimsa is the absence of destructive thoughts, feelings or

Ahimsa is not to be practiced at the physical level only but at a mental one as well. In other words, it is stated that there should be no Himsa by ‘ Man ‘ (mind), ‘Vachan’ (speech), or ‘Kaya” (body).
• Even hurting feelings is himsa.

All claims of “truth” are Relative or Non-absolute
• Truth is expressed in many ways
• One cannot make definite statement about Truth, each statement is true in its own limited sense
• To understand the nature of Existence, one requires the vision of seeing an entity from all perspectives – this is Anekantvad

Application of Anekantvad
Replace certitude with relativity in thinking
Increase tolerance for other’s view points
Dynamic philosophy of life
Life of friendliness and harmony
Life of partnership and participation
Life of universal love and equality
Change in our outlook, thought and action
An integral, balanced and effective approach to problem solving

•It is a theory of conditional predication
•It is a theory of relativity of propositions or judgments
•It explains reality epistemologically
•It is a method of expressing multifacetedness of objects by using the qualifies ‘Syad’

All knowledge claims are only tentative
“X may be Y” or
“X is Y under certain conditions”
rather than “X is Y”

It shares a similarity with Einstein’s theory of Relativity

Saptabhangi (Seven fold prediction)
• Maybe it is existent
• Maybe it is non-existent
• Maybe it is existent and non-existent
• Maybe it is indefinable
• Maybe it is existent and indefinable
• Maybe it is non-existent and indefinable
• Maybe it is existent, non-existent and indefinable

• Parigraha is the primary cause of all violence.
• In fact, true Non-violence can not be achieved without the spirit of Aparigraha.

• Aparigraha for the layperson is commonly understood to mean ‘limiting one’s possessions’.
• One must be careful here not to get caught up in just the physical act of vow taking, in giving up this or that.

It may be the beginning but until we understand and develop the spirit of non-attachment, physical act alone may be of little help!


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