Appendix: Canonical quotes in support of positive non-violence (4)
Tae ṇaṁ ahaṁ Goyamā! Gosālassa Maṅkhali-puttassa aṇukampaṇaṭṭhayāe Vesiyāyaṇassa Bālatavassissa teyapaḍisāharaṇaṭṭhayāe ettha ṇaṁ antarā sīyaliyaṁ teyalessaṁ nisirāmi, jāe sā mamaṁ sīyaliyāe teyalessāe Vesiyāyaṇassa Bālatavassissa usiṇā teyalessā paḍihayā |
- Vyākhyāprajñapti, Śataka 15.
Then O Gautama! Out of compassion for Maṅkhaliputra Gośālaka I projected the cold energy beam to overcome the hot energy-beam that austere but ignorant Vaiśyāyana had launched earlier. That cold energy-beam projected by me killed the hot energy-beam projected by austere but ignorant Vaiśyāyana.
Comments – These words of Bhagvān Mahāvīra clearly indicate that He saved the life of Maṅkhaliputra Gośālaka purely out of compassion for him.
Jai majjha kāraṇā ee, hammanti subahu jiyā | Na me eyaṁ tu nissesaṁ, paraloge bhavissaī |
- Uttarādhyayana sūtra, 22.19.
That is – If many creatures are killed for my sake, it will not be good for me in my afterlife.
Comments – These words of Bhagvān Ariṣṭanemi spoken at the time when his wedding procession had reached the bride (Rājimati)’s place and where He saw a large number of animals penned there for the purpose of preparing the wedding feast for the groom’s party, indicate that any mass killing for the sake of anybody is not correct and should always be avoided. Today, many toiletries and silk, leather and fur garments involve killing or maiming animals and insects/ worms on a large scale. This statement motivates us for giving up such things involving mass violence.
Ahiṁsayaṁ savvapayāṇukampī, dhamme ṭhitaṁ kammavivegaheuṁ |
- Sūtrakṛtāṅga, 2.6.25.
That is, – The lord is totally free from any violence towards any living being; He is always compassionate towards them. He is always steadfastly stable in dharma and is endowed with a high degree of karmic discretion.
Bhūtavratvanukampādānaṁ sarāgasaṁyamādiyogaḥ kṣāntiḥ śauchamiti sadvedyasya | – Tattvārtha sūtra, 6.13.
That is, – Giving of a gift of compassion to all the living beings and the restrained and the renounced results in the bonding of pleasurable feeling producing karma.
Comments – By saying that the gift of compassion to all the living beings and the restrained and the renounced results in the bonding of pleasurable feeling producing karma Uamāsvāti upholds the prevalent view that ‘giving pleasure results in pleasure and giving pain results in pain’.
Tae ṇaṁ tumaṁ Mehā! Pāeṇaṁ gattaṁ kaṇḍuissāmi tti kaṭṭu pāe ukkhitte, taṁsi ca ṇaṁ antaraṁsi annehi balavantehi sattehi paṇolijjamāṇe paṇolijjamāṇe sasae aṇupaviṭṭhe |
Tae ṇaṁ tumaṁ Mehā! Gāyaṁ kaṇḍuittā puṇaravi pāyaṁ paḍinikkhamissāmi tti kaṭṭu taṁ sasayaṁ aṇupaviṭṭhaṁ pāsasi, pāsittā, pāṇāṇukampayāe bhūyā-ṇukampayāe sattāṇukampayāe se pāe antarā ceva sandhārie, no ceva ṇaṁ ṇikkhitte |
Tae ṇaṁ Mehā! Tāe pāṇāṇukampayāe jāva sattāṇukampayāe saṁsāre parittikae, māṇussāue nibaddhe |
- Jñātādharmakathāsūtra, Ch.1.
Then O Megha! Thinking, “I should scratch my body”, you lifted one leg. During that interval tormented by other more powerful animals one rabbit came to that vacant space and settled down there.
Then O Megha! Having scratched you thought “I should put the leg down” but you saw the rabbit sitting there and out of compassion for that living being you held that leg and kept it lifted only and did not put it down.
O Megha! Due to that compassion for the living being you reduced your worldly transmigration and bonded the human rebirth giving karma.
Comments – In this aphorism there are two results of compassion mentioned here. 1. Reduction in worldly transmigration and 2. Bonding the auspicious karma that yield human rebirth from one of an elephant. Such auspicious karmic bondage due to compassion must motivate all for undertaking acts of compassion. In the act of compassion by the elephant there was no feeling of attachment or selfishness. The feeling of saving a life motivated his compassion. It is this form of compassion that helps one in attaining spiritual emancipation and eventual liberation. It is worth mentioning that in the very next birth the elephant was reborn as Meghakumāra and was liberated.
Aṇassuyāe ṇaṁ jive aṇukampae aṇubbhaḍe vigaya-soge carittamohaṇijjaṁ kammaṁ khavei |
- Uttarādhyayanasūtra, 29.29.
That is, – Due to detachment and compassion the soul sheds all misery and becomes unperturbed and sheds conduct-deluding karma to attain full freedom from attachment.
Rāgo jassa pasattho aṇukampāsaṁsido ya pariṇāmo | Cittamhi natthi kalussaṁ puṇṇaṁ jīvassa āsavadi |
- Pañcāstikāya, 135.
That is – The inner self of one who is endowed with noble attachment and compassionate feelings does not harbour any blemish and he earns meritorious and auspicious karmic bondage.
Puṇṇāsavamūḍhā aṇukampā suddhao a uvajoo | Vivarīo pāvassa hu āsavaheuṁ viyāṇāhi |
- Jayadhavalā, Book 1, p. 96.
That is, – Compassion and pure consciousness are the forms of auspicious karmic influx and as opposed to these the lack of compassion and volitional impurity indicate sinful karmic influx.
Comments – Purity of consciousness is considered to be a cause of karmic reduction and destruction. Therefore, kindness and compassion also cause karmic reduction and destruction.
Kṛtakariṣyamāṇopakārānapekṣairanukampā kṛtā bhavati |
- Bhagavatīārādhanā Vijayodayā Tīkā, p. 816.
That is, – Kind acts by those who are not doing so in return of a past favour or in expectation of a future favour is said to be compassion.
Comments – When one does well by others in return for a favour received in the past or in expectation of a favour to be received in future, it is not called an act of compassion but a selfish act. It is like trading favours. When we have neither received any favour from anybody in the past nor is there any possibility of receiving favours in future and even then we act with kindness towards that creature, it is said to be noble compassion.
Varamekākṣara grāhyaṁ sarvasatvānukampanaṁ | Na tvakṣapoṣakaṁ pāpaṁ kuśāstraṁ dhūrtacarcitaṁ |
- Jñānārṇava, 28.26.
That is – Even one letter that has been written in the compassionate vein is noble and acceptable while even the whole scripture written otherwise by the cheats is ignoble and not acceptable.
Dhamme ṭhio savvapayāṇukampī |
- Uttarādhyayanasūtra, 13.32.
That is, – Be steadfast in dharma and be compassionate on all subjects.
Jo u paraṁ kampantaṁ daṭṭhūṇa na kampae kaṭhiṇabhāvo | Eso u niraṇukampo, aṇu pacchābhāva-joeṇaṁ | – Vṛhatkalpabhāṣya, 1320.
That is, – The hardhearted that is not moved by seeing others in misery is not compassionate.
Paraduḥkhavināśinī karuṇā | – Dharmabindu.
That is, – Kindness destroys others’ troubles.
Kāruṇyamanukampā dīnānugraha ityanarthāntaraṁ |
- Tattvārthabhāṣya, 7.6.
That is, – Kindness, compassion and being favourable to the poor are synonymous.
Dīnānugrahabhāvaḥ kāruṇyaṁ | Śārīra-mānasa-duḥkhāmyarditānāṁ dīnānāṁ prāṇināṁ anugrahātmakaḥ pariṇāmaḥ karuṇasya bhāvaḥ karma vā kāruṇyamiti kathyate | – Tattvārthavārtika, 7.11.3.
That is, – To be favourable to the poor and the miserable is kindness. The favourable attitude towards those miserable creatures that suffer from physical and mental pains is called kindness. In other words the volitional disposition of a kind person is said to be kindness.
Dīnābhyuddharaṇe buddhiḥ kāruṇyaṁ karuṇātmanāṁ |
- Upāsakādhyayana, 337.
That is – Kindness is nothing but the engaging of the kind person’s mind in mitigating the troubles of the miserable poor creatures.
Dīneśvārteṣu bhīteṣu yācamāneṣu jīvitaṁ | Pratikāraparā buddhiḥ kāruṇyamamidhīyate |
- Yogaśāstra, 4.120.
That is, – A mind to help and save those that are poor and miserable, that are frightened and the ones that beg to be spared is kindness.
Tvāmanapekṣya paraduḥkhaprahāṇecchā kāruṇyaṁ |
- Pramāṇa, Syādvāda, 5.8.
That is, – Kindness is to desire to mitigate the troubles of others with utter disregard to mitigating own troubles.
Hīna-dīna-kānīnānayajanānugrāhāktvaṁ kāruṇyaṁ |
- Tattvārthavṛtti, śruta 7-11.
That is – To be kind to the poor and the miserable, to the backward and the blind is kindness.
Roga-śoka-daridrādyaiḥ pīḍitā ye’tra jantavaḥ | Teṣāṁ duḥkhaprahāṇecchā kāruṇyaṁ kriyatāmiti |
- Dharmasaṅgraha, śrā 10-104.
That is – The desire to mitigate the troubles of those suffering from sickness, grief, poverty, etc., is kindness.
Janmāmmoghau karmaṇā bhrāmyamāṇe jīvagrāme duḥkhite’nekabhede | Cittārdratvaṁ yadvidhate mahātmā tatkāruṇyaṁ darśyate darśnīyaiḥ |
- Amitagati Śrāvakācāra, 2.81.
That is – The gentle call the activities of the great men aimed at mitigating the troubles of the creatures that transmigrate the worldly cycles and suffer variously.
Dainya-śokasamuttrāse rogapīḍārditātmasu | Vadha-bandhanaruddheṣu yācamāneṣu jīvitaṁ | Kṣuttṛṭśramāmibhūteṣuśītādyairdhyadhiteṣu ca | Aviruddheṣu nistriṁśairyātyamāneṣu nirdayaṁ | Maraṇārteṣu jīveṣu yatpratikāravāñchayā | Anugrahamatiḥ seyaṁ karuṇeti prakīrtitā |
- Jñānārṇava, 27.8-10.
That is, – Kindness is the mental disposition to help and mitigate the troubles of those who, owing to poverty, grief and fear, suffer from disease, pain, etc.,; who have been tied down or captured for slaughter and beg for their lives; who have been overwhelmed by hunger, thirst and overwork and are tormented by heat and cold; and those who are defenseless and are threatened by the cruel and are subjected to cruelties.
Parahitacintā maitrī, paraduḥkhavināśinī tathā karuṇā | Parasukhatuṣṭirmuditā, paradoṣekṣaṇamupekṣā |
- Bhagavatī Ārādhanā, Vijayodayā Tīkā, p. 816.
That is, – To care about others’ interests and to cooperate with them is friendship; to think of mitigating others’ sufferings is kindness; to be pleased in others’ pleasures is said to be happiness and to ignore other’s faults are the four volitional dispositions that are essential for pious contemplation.
Comments – Absolutely speaking, it is possible that one may not be fully capable of mitigating others’ troubles but one can always be moved by their sufferings and try to mitigate them up to one’s capacity. This will result in reduction of attachment of the kind person and the others will be encouraged to struggle themselves. In practice also, good results of kindness are noticed. In practicing kindness others being helped are not considered inferior to the one that helps but an effort is made to remove their poverty and suffering. This itself fills their eyes with an added sparkle.