Author: W J Johnson
Publisher: Motilal Banarsidass
ISBN/UPC (if available): 812081309X
Harmless Souls considers doctrinal change and its implication for religious practice in early Jainism. It focuses on evolving views about the conditions necessary for karmic bondage and the liberation of embodied souls, as described in parts of the early Svetambara cannon, Umasvati’s Tattvartha Sutra, and the major works of Kundakunda.
Particular attention is paid to the roles the knowledge and self-realisation play on Kundakunda’s path to liberation. The strategies used to preserve ascetic discipline when faced by the challenge of this emphasis on gnosis are explored in the light of various interpretations of Kundakunda’s two truths doctrine.
It is concluded that, although significant doctrinal changes do take place, these are not permitted to affect Jaina practice, for it is just such ascetic practice which constitutes and preserves the distinctive religious and social identity of the Jaina community.
PART I- EARLY JAINISM
Bondage and liberation according to the early Svetambara canon
PART II-UMASVATI’S JAINISM
The mechanism of bondage according to the Tattvartha Sutra
PART III-KUNDAKUNDA: THE PRAVACANASARA
Kundakunda: content and context
The mechanism of bondage according to the Pravacanasara
The mechanism of liberation according to the Pravacanasara
PART IV-KUNDAKUNDA: THE SAMAYASARA
Kundakunda: definitions and truths
The mechanism of bondage according to the Samayasara
The mechanism of liberation according to the Samayasara
Appendix 1: Niyamasara
Appendix 2: Pancastikaya
Appendix 3: Pravacanasara
Appendix 4: Samayasara
Glossary and Index