Extraordinary Rituals TV - Sam Harris - Jaina Sutras - Mahavira & Sandorson Beck - Virchard Gandhi - George Bernard Shaw - Shri Jawaharlal Nehru - H Jacobi -
Jainism: An act of self-sacrifice which is why in her ultimate test of faith every hair on her head will be plucked out by hand. Extraordinary Rituals: Changing World, BBC 2018
If you think that it would be impossible to improve upon the Ten Commandments as a statement of morality, you really owe it to yourself to read some other scriptures. Once again, we need look no further than the Jains: Mahavira, the Jain patriarch, surpassed the morality of the Bible with a single sentence: ‘Do not injure, abuse, oppress, enslave, insult, torment, torture, or kill any creature or living being.’ Imagine how different our world might be if the Bible contained this as its central precept. Christians have abused, oppressed, enslaved, insulted, tormented, tortured, and killed people in the name of God for centuries, on the basis of a theologically defensible reading of the Bible. Sam Harris, Letter to a Christian Nation
The core principle of Jainism is non-violence. Sam Harris, 2010
He who sees by himself, needs no instruction;. But the miserable, afflicted fool who delights in pleasures and whose miseries do not cease, is turned round in the whirl of pains. Jaina Sutras bk1
A wise man should avoid wrath, pride, deceit, greed, love, hate, delusion, conception, birth, death, hell, animal existence, and pain. ibid.
All breathing, existing, living, sentient creatures should not be slain, nor treated with violence, nor abused, nor tormented, nor driven away. This is the pure, unchangeable, eternal law. ibid.
Four things of paramount value are difficult to obtain here by a living being: human birth, instruction in the Law, belief in it, and energy in self-control. ibid. lecture 3
Death against one’s will is that of ignorant men … death with one’s will is that of wise men. ibid. lecture 5
There are five causes which render wholesome discipline impossible: egoism, delusion, carelessness, illness and idleness. ibid. lecture 11
By the adoration of twenty-four Jinas the soul arrived at the purity of faith. ibid. lecture 29
By renouncing his body he acquires the preeminent virtues of the Siddhas, by the possession of which he goes to the highest region of the universe and becomes absolutely happy. bid.
A monk destroys his austerities the bad karma which he had acquired by love and hatred. ibid. lecture 30
There are three ways of committing sins: by one’s own activity, by commission, by approval. ibid. Sutrakritanga 1
This is the quintessence of wisdom: not to kill anything. Now this to be the legitimate conclusion from the principle of the reciprocity with regard to non-killing. ibid.
This creed of the Nirgranthas [Jains] is true, supreme, excellent, full of virtues, right, pure, it removes doubts, it is the road to perfection, liberation, Nirvana. ibid. Sutrakritanga 2
Nonviolence is the greatest religion. Mahavira
The essential metaphysical ideas of Jainism are nine cardinal principles. The universe is divided into that which is alive and conscious (jiva) and matter which is not (ajiva). Jivas (souls) are either caught by karma (action) in the world of reincarnation (samsara) or liberated (mukta) and perfected (siddha). Though their number is infinite, jivas are individuals and each potentially infinite in awareness, power, and bliss. Matter (ajiva) is made up of eternal atoms in time and space which can be moved and stopped. Sandorson Beck, citing Mahavira’s ‘Ethics of Civilization’
We preach and practice brotherhood – not only of man but of all living beings – not on Sundays only but on all the days of the week. We believe in the law of universal justice – that our present condition is the result of our past actions and that we are not subjected to the freaks of an irresponsible governor, who is prosecutor and judge at the same time; we depend for our salvation on our own acts and deeds and not on the sacrificial death of an attorney. Virchand Gandhi, The Monist
Christian missions to India imply that India is a land of heathens, and, therefore, stands on the same level with the Andaman or the Fiji Islands. That a country which has been recognised in all ages the world over as the mother of all religions and the cradle of civilisation should be considered as pagan, shows how much ignorance prevails in Christendom.
Since the Parliament of Religions, I have been studying Christian institutions, and I have also studied the way in which the Christian ministers and the missionaries are manufactured in this country, and have learned to pity them. We must not blame them too severely, because their education is too narrow to make them broad-minded. I grant that they are good-hearted, that they are good husbands and often fathers of large families, but generally they are very ignorant, especially of the history of civilisation and of the philosophy of religion of India. Most of them do not even know the history of ancient India.
We know that in this age of competition, centralisation, and monopoly, very many people are forced out of business. The English say, ‘The fool of the family goes into the Church.’ So that when a youth is unable to make a living, he takes to missionary work, goes to India, and helps to introduce among the Hindus the doctrines of his church, which have long since been exploded by science. ibid.
I adore so greatly the principles of the Jain religion, that I would like to be reborn in a Jain community. George Bernard Shaw
Truly speaking, Jainism is an independent and original religion, for it is neither Hinduism nor Vedic religion, but of course it is an aspect of Indian life, culture, and philosophy. Shri Jawaharlal Nehru
The interest of Jainism to the students of religion consists in the fact that it goes back to a very early period and to Primitive currents of religious and metaphysical speculations, which gave rise to the oldest philosophies Sankhya, Yoga and to Buddhism. Dr H Jacobi, ‘Faith & Philosophy of Jainism’ p17