English translation of. Holy Akaranga Sutra. English translation by Hermann Jacobi taken from Contents: Introduction. Akaranga Sutra: First Book: 1. Knowledge of the weapon. 2. Conquest of the world. 3. Hot and cold. 4. Righteousness. 5. Essence of the. Gaina Sutras, Part I – The Akaranga Sutra, The Kalpa Sutra [transl; F. Max Muller Hermann Jacobi] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.

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THE origin and development of the Gaina sect is a subject on which some scholars still think it safe to speak with a sceptical caution, though this seems little warranted by the present state of akarranga whole question; for a large and ancient literature has been made accessible, and furnishes ample materials for the early history of the sect to all who are willing to collect them.

Nor is the nature of these materials such as to make us distrust them. We know that the sacred books of the Gainas are old, avowedly older than the Sanskrit literature which we are accustomed to call classical.

Regarding their antiquity, many of those books can vie with the oldest books of the northern Buddhists. As the latter works have successfully been used as materials for the history of Buddha and Buddhism, we can find no reason why we should distrust the sacred books of the Gainas as an authentic source of their history.

If they were full of contradictory statements, or the dates contained in them would lead to contradictory conclusions, we should be justified in viewing all theories based on such materials with suspicion. But the character of the Gaina literature differs little in this respect also from the Buddhistical, at least from that of the akaraanga Buddhists. How is it then that so many writers are inclined to accord a different age and origin to the Gaina sect from what can be deduced from their own literature?

The obvious reason is the similarity, real or apparent, which European scholars have discovered between Sutrra and Buddhism.

Two sects which have so much in common could not, it was thought, have been independent from each other, but one sect must needs have grown out of, akaranha branched off from the other. This a priori opinion has prejudiced the discernment of many critics, and still does so.

In the following pages I shall try to destroy this prejudice, and to vindicate that authority and credit of the sacred books of the Gainas to which they are entitled. We begin our discussion with an inquiry about Mahavira, the founder or, at least, the last prophet of the Gaina church. It will be seen that enough is known of him to invalidate the suspicion that he is a sort of mystical person, invented or set up by a younger sect some centuries after the pretended age of their assumed founder.

They would akaganga us believe that Kundagrama was a large town, and Siddhartha a powerful monarch. But they have misrepresented the matter in overrating the real state of things, just as the Buddhists did with regard to Kapilavastu and Suddhodana. For Kundagrama is called in the Akaranga Sutra a samnivesa, a term which the commentator interprets as denoting a halting-place of caravans or processions.

It must therefore have been an insignificant place, of which tradition has only recorded that it lay in Videha Akaranga Sutra II, 15, section Yet by combining occasional hints in the Bauddha and Gaina scriptures we can, with sufficient accuracy, point out where the birthplace of Mahavira was situated; for in the Mahavagga of the Buddhists [1] we read that Buddha, while sojourning at Kotiggama, was visited by the courtezan Ambapali and the Likkhavis of the neighbouring capital Vesali.

From Kotiggama he went to where the Natikas [2] lived. There he lodged in the Natika Brick-hall [2], in the neighbourhood of which place the courtezan that Siddhartha was but a baron; for he is frequently called merely Kshatriya—his wife Trisala is, so far as I remember, never styled Devi, queen, but always Kshatriyani.

Whenever the Gnatrika Kshatriyas are mentioned, they are never spoken of as Siddhartha’s Samantas or dependents, but are treated as his equals. From all this it appears that Siddhartha was no king, nor even the head of his clan, but in all probability only exercised the degree of authority which in the East usually falls to the share of landowners, especially of those belonging to the recognised aristocracy of the country.

Still he may have enjoyed a greater influence than many of his fellow-chiefs; for he is recorded to have been highly connected by marriage.

His wife Trisala was sister to Ketaka, king of Vaisali [1]. She is called Vaidehi or Videhadatta [2], because she belonged to the reigning line of Videha. Buddhist works do not mention, for aught I know, Ketaka, king of Vaisali; but they tell us that the government of Vesali was vested in a senate composed of the nobility and presided over by a king, who shared the power with a viceroy and a general-in-chief [3]. In Gaina books we still have traces of this curious government of the Likkhavis; for in the Nirayavali Sutra [4] it is related that king Ketaka, whom Kunika, al.

Agatasatru, king of Kampa, prepared to attack with a strong army, called together the eighteen confederate kings of Kasi and Kosala, the Likkhavis and Mallakis, and asked them whether they would satisfy Kunika’s demands or go to war with him.

Again, on the death of Mahavira the eighteen confederate kings, mentioned above, instituted a festival to be held in memory of that event [5], but no separate mention is made of Ketaka, their pretended sovereign.

It is therefore probable that Ketaka was simply one of these confederate kings and of equal power with them. In addition to this, his power was checked by the constitution of Vesali. So we are enabled to understand why the Buddhists took no notice of him, as his influence was not very great, and, besides, was used in the interest of their rivals.

But the Gainas cherished the memory of the maternal uncle and patron of their prophet, to whose influence we must attribute the fact, that Vaisali used to be a stronghold of Gainism, while being looked upon by the Buddhists as a seminary of heresies and dissent. We have traced the connection of Mahavira’s family not out of mere curiosity, which indiscriminately collects all historical facts however insignificant in themselves, but for the reason that the knowledge of this connection enables us to understand how Mahavira came to obtain his success.


By birth he as well as Buddha was a member of a feudal aristocracy similar to that of the Yadavas in the legends about Krishna, or that of the Rajpoots of the present day.

In feudal societies family ties are very strong and long remembered [1]. Now we know for certain that Buddha at least addressed himself chiefly to the members of the aristocracy, that the Gainas originally preferred the Kshatriyas to the Brahmans [2]. It is evident that both Mahavira and Buddha have made use of the interest and support of their families to propagate their order.

Their prevalence over other rivals was certainly due in some degree to their connection with the chief families of the country. Through his mother Mahavira was related to the ruling dynasty in Magadha; for Ketaka’s daughter Kellana [3] was married to Seniya Bimbhisara [4] or Bimbisara, king of Magadha, and residing in Ragagriha. He is praised by the Gainas and Buddhists, as the friend and patron of both.

The following table gives the names of the relations of Mahavira, or, as we should call him when not speaking of him as a prophet of the Gainas, Vardhamana or Gnatriputra [1]: I do not intend to write a full life of Mahavira, but to collect only such details which show him at once a distinct historical person, and as different from Buddha in the most important particulars.

Vardhamana was, like his father, a Kasyapa. He seems to have lived in the house of his parents till they died, and his elder brother, Nandivardhana, succeeded to what principality they had.

Then, at the age of twenty-eight, he, with the consent of those in power, entered the spiritual career, which in India, just as the church in Roman Catholic countries, seems to have offered a field for the ambition of younger sons. For twelve years he led a life of austerities, visiting even the wild tribes of the country called Radha. After the first year he went about naked [2]. From the end of these twelve years of preparatory self-mortification dates Vardhamana’s Kevaliship.

Since that akaranfa he was recognised as omniscient, as a prophet of the Gainas, or a Tirthakara, and had the titles Gina, Mahavira, which were also given to Sakyamuni. The last thirty years of his life he passed in teaching his religious system and organising his order of ascetics, which, as we have seen above, was patronised or at least countenanced chiefly by those princes with whom he was related through his mother, viz.

In the towns which lay in these parts he spent almost all the rainy seasons during his spiritual career [1], though he extended his travels as far west and north as Sravasti and the foot of the Himalaya. The names of his chief disciples, the eleven Ganadharas or apostles of the Gainas, as detailed in the Kalpa Sutra List of Sthaviras, section 1are given without any variation by both divisions of the church, the Svetambaras akafanga Digambaras.

Of the details of Mahavira’s life, mentioned in the canonical books, his rivalry with, and victory over Gosala, the son of Makkhali, and lastly, the place of his death, the small town Papa, deserve to be noticed. Nor are we by any means forced to rely on the tradition of the Gainas only, since for some particulars we have the testimony of the Buddhists also, in whose writings Mahavira is mentioned under his well-known name Nataputta, as the head of the Niganthas or Gaina monks and a rival of Buddha.

They only misstated his Gotra as that of Agnivaisyayana; in this particular they confounded him with his chief apostle Sudharman, the only one of all the apostles who survived him and took the lead in the church after his teacher’s death. Mahavira being a contemporary of Buddha, they both had the same contemporaries, viz.

Bimbisara and his sons, Abhayakumara and Agatasatru, the Likkhavis and Mallas, Gosala Makkhaliputra, whom we accordingly meet with in the sacred books of either sect. From the Buddhist Pitakas it appears, as we have seen above, that Mahavira’s followers were very numerous in Vaisali, a fact that is in perfect accordance with what the Gainas relate about his birth in the vicinity of that town, and which at the same time well agrees with his connection with the chief magistrate of the place.

In addition to this, some tenets of the Niganthas, e. Lastly, the Buddhists are correct in assuming the town Papa as the scene of Nataputta’s death. Comparing this outline of Mahavira’s life with that of Buddha’s, we can detect little or nothing in the former which can be xkaranga as having been formed after the latter by tradition.

The general resemblance between the lives of both is due to their being lives of ascetics, which from the nature of the things must present some uniformity, which certainly will appear greater to the mind of a European historian of our times than to that of an ancient Hindu. Some names of Mahavira’s relations are similar to those of Buddha’s: But suta the similarity of these names proves anything, it proves no more than that names of this description were much used then among the Kshatriyas, as surely they were at all times [1].

Nor is it to be wondered at that two Kshatriyas should have founded sects in opposition, or at least in disregard to the authority of the Brahmans. For, sjtra I shall try to prove in the sequel, the Kshatriyas were the most likely of all to become what the Brahmans would call ‘untrue ascetics.

We shall now put side by side the principal events of Buddha’s and Mahavira’s lives, in order to demonstrate their difference. Buddha was born in Kapilavastu, Mahavira in a village near Vaisali; Buddha’s mother died after his birth, Mahavira’s parents lived to see him a grown-up man; Buddha turned ascetic during the lifetime and against the will of his father, Mahavira did so after the xkaranga of his parents and with the consent of those in power; Buddha led a life sutea austerities for six years, Mahavira for twelve; Buddha thought these years wasted time, and that all his penances were akaranta for attaining his end, Mahavira was convinced of the necessity of his penances [1], and persevered in some of them even after becoming a Tirthakara.


Amongst Buddha’s ustra Gosala Makkhaliputra is by no means so prominent as amongst Mahavira’s, nor among the former do we meet Gamali, who caused the first schism in sutrw Gaina church. All the disciples of Buddha bear other names than those of Mahavira. To finish this enumeration of differences, Buddha died in Kusinagara, whereas Mahavira died in Papa, avowedly before the former.

I have dwelt so long on the subject of Mahavira’s life in order to make the reader acquainted with facts which amaranga decide the question whether the origin of Gainism was independent of Buddhism or not. Though most scholars do not go the length of denying that Mahavira and Buddha were different persons, yet some will not admit that this decides the question at issue.

Professor Weber, in his learned treatise on the literature of the Gainas [2], says that he still regards ‘the Gainas merely as one of the oldest sects of Buddhism. According akaramga my opinion,’ he writes, ‘this is not precluded by the tradition about the origin of its founder having partly made use of another person than Buddha Sakyamuni; nay, even of one whose name is frequently mentioned in Buddhist legends as one of Buddha’s contemporary opponents. This rather suggests to me that the Gainas intentionally disowned Buddha, being driven to this extremity by the animosity of sect.

The number and importance of coincidences in the tradition of either sect akarang their founders is, on the whole, overwhelming. sutr

Acharanga Sutra – Wikipedia

Professor Weber’s last argument, the very one on which he seems to base his theory, has, according to my opinion, been fully refuted by our zkaranga inquiry.

This theory, in itself, would require the strongest proof before we could admit it as even probable. Generally, heterodox sects claim to be the most authentic and correct interpreters of the words and tenets of their founders. If a sect begins to recognise another authority kaaranga that of the original founder of the main church, it either adopts another faith already in existence, or starts a new one.

In the first case the previous existence of the Gaina faith in some form or other has to be admitted; in the second sutrs must suppose that the malcontent Buddhists searched in their scriptures for an opponent of Buddha, on whom they might foist their heretical theories, a course in which they were not followed by any other of the many sects of Suhra. Now, granted for argument’s sake, that they really did what they are charged with, they must have proceeded with the utmost dexterity, making use of, and slightly altering all occasional hints about the Niganthas and Nataputta which they were able to hunt up in their ancient scriptures, inventing new facts, and fabricating documents of their own, which to all, not in the secret, would seem just as trustworthy as those of their opponents.

Xkaranga the Buddhistical and Gaina traditions about Mahavira, the circumstances in, and the people with whom he lived, so very well tally with, complete and correct each other that the most natural and plausible way to account for this fact, which our preceding inquiry has established, seems to be that both traditions are, in the main, independent of each other, and record what, at the time of their attaining a fixed form, was regarded as historical truth.

We shall now consider the resemblance between Buddhism and Gainism which has struck so many writers on this topic and greatly influenced their opinion regarding their mutual relation. Professor Lassen [1] adduces akarangz points amaranga coincidence which, according to his opinion, prove that the Gainas have branched off from the Bauddhas.

We shall discuss them one after the other. Both sects give the same titles akwranga epithets to their prophets: Gina, Arhat, Mahavira, Sarvagna, Sugata, Tathagata, Siddha, Buddha, Sambuddha, Parinivrita, Mukta, All these words occur more or less frequently in the writings of both sects; but there is this difference, that with the exception of Gina, and perhaps Sramana, the preference is given akaraga some set of titles by one sect, and to another set by the rival sect; e.

Akaranta, Tathagata, Sugata, and Sambuddha are common titles of Sakyamuni, and are only occasionally used as epithets of Mahavira. The case is exactly reverse with regard to Vira and Mahavira, the usual titles of Vardhamana.

More marked still is the difference with regard to Tirthakara, meaning prophet with the Gainas, but founder of an heretical sect with the Bauddhas. What then may be safely inferred from the peculiar choice which either sect made from these epithets and titles? That the Ssutra borrowed them from the older Buddhists?

For if these words had once been fixed as titles, or gained some special meaning beyond the one warranted by etymology, they could only have been adopted or rejected. Akxranga it was not possible that a word which had acquired some special meaning should have been adopted, but used in the original sense by those who borrowed it from the Buddhists.

The most natural construction we can akaganga on the facts is, that there was and is at all times a number of honorific adjectives and substantives applicable to persons of exalted virtue.