Dr. Jayanti Lal Jain, born on 1th March, 1949 at Galiakot, Dungarpur Dist, Rajasthan, has done PhD. In Economics (1980) from Oklahoma State University, USA, and holds Ph. D in Jainology (2006) from University of Madras, Chennai. He had earlier done M.A. Economics from Wichita State Unviersity, USA, in 1976 and M.A. Economics (Gold Medalist) from the University of Udaipur in 1971 and B.A. from the University of Udaipur in 1969 in First Class.
He is currently Professor Emeritus at Department of Jainology, University of Madras. He retired from the services of Indian Bank, Chennai, as Chief Economic Adviser/General Manager in February 2009.
Before joining Indian Bank, he worked as consultant in Administrative Staff College of India, Hyderabad, Planning Commission, Government of India, Development Research Centre, World Bank, Washington, USA and also taught at the University of Delhi. He was member of various Apex Level Committees of Indian Banks’ Association, Mumbai.
Dr Jayanti Lal Jain has written more than 100 articles on various aspects of Jain Philosophy as well as on Economics, Banking and Finance which have published in various local, national and international Journals/Bulletins/Periodicals.
He delivers lectures regularly in India and abroad. His lectures are very popular, inspirational and appreciated by one and all.
The soul is a treasure house of infinite knowledge, vision, happiness, power and so on about which we have very little knowledge. Some have misgivings and some even doubt the very existence of soul. Absence of this knowledge subjects an individual to many illusionary ideas and consequent anxieties and unhappiness in life. This book on treasure of pure soul is a summary of the concept of pure soul as enunciated by the Tirthankaras, spiritual scientists and innumerable scholars, in Jain tradition, known to mankind from time immemorial. The subject is subtle, complex, defies normal human understanding and no one can claim to cover the same in its various dimensions. This is a small attempt to summarise the existing knowledge on the subject.
The first four chapters provide the background and introduce certain concepts which are essential for better understanding of the subject. Chapters V and VII primarily deal with the treasure of soul in terms of forty seven properties and then over one thousand names or characteristics respectively where each one of them can further be visua1ised in various forms that a soul takes and each form/modification comprising of operation of infinite characteristics. Chapter VI emphasises that the concept of soul has secular underpinnings and should not be believed to belong to one or a few religious groups. This is applicable to all living beings in the universe and does not apply only to a part of the universe or a group of beings in the universe. On the basis of concept of pure soul, it also lays down certain secular/eternal/common standards that should be satisfied while considering a concept as secular.
This book is an abridged version of my thesis submitted to the Department of Jaino1ogy, University of Madras, in partial fulfilment of the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in 2005. In terms of references for this concept, the narration is based on the Annexure to the commentary of Amritchandra on Samayasar of Kundakunda and Jinsena's Jinasahastranama. Kundakunda's major works like Samayasar, Pravanchanasar and Niyamasar have also considerably influenced the reasoning advocated in different chapters.
My endeavour here is to provide a text on pure soul that will be useful to anyone interested in the subject and promote further insight into the same. Special care has been taken to avoid, to a great extent, use of Sanskrit or Prakrit words to facilitate smooth reading and understanding of the subject, keeping in mind the interest of non-scholar Jains, non-Jains and Non-Hindi speaking readers.
I am thankful to Dr. Priyadarshana Jain, Head i/c of the Department of Jainology, University of Madras for her inifiative to publish this work under the Bhagawan Mahaveer Endowment Publication and Sri Krishna Chand, Secretary Research Foundation for Jainology, Chennai for sponsoring this publication. The cover page, picture on Dhyan and Mystic is from the well-known paintings of Kavita Shah, the Map of Universe is from Trilok Bhaskar by Ariyaka Jnanmati, the picture on Existence of Pure Soul is from Jain Dharam by Babulal Jain, picture on Destruction of Karma is from the journal, Dharma-Mangal, October 07.
I am sure that there will be tremendous change in the perception of life of all those who will read and understand this text and will find easy access to the infinite treasure of pure soul and eternal happiness.
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