Let us appreciate the scriptures and enhance the glory of life
Writing is the foundation of thinking. The books in your library reflect your character. A person who loves books is never alone. He is always surrounded by pictorial descriptions of immortal and great individuals. We often decorate our rooms with many quotes and ideas that pave the way to the growth of a banyan of wisdom. However, only a few people realize it in its entirety. Nevertheless, for those who wish to enhance their life to the fullest, the lives and works of the great philosophers, poets, and great men are readily available to guide them continuously. This is the strength of books. When we turn to many religious practices, we should also rejuvenate the habit of reading our scriptures. In order to get rid of some traditional and illusory sentiments, we need to go back to the core elements. The core enlightens us and makes our mind clearer and harmonious. Gandhiji used to say, “Whenever I am in doubt, I seek guidance from the Gita.” The relevance of the great books is a bright example of friendship. In the long run, books bring clarity, shape our personalities, and make us adventurous. The way out of the web of thoughts can only be found when the brilliance of the books is the basis.
A sage on the top of the Himalayas experiences the highest realization of Sadhana. Acharya Bhagavant and Sadhviji express the realization of Sadhana in books. When we absorb these books, no one can stop the heart from blossoming. Jainism always glorifies reading scriptures. Swadhyaya (self-study) is important. The words of many Agama Granths (scriptures) are made humanly oriented that gave birth to the discourse of salvation. These scriptures bring clarity about karma, righteous conduct, and rights and lead human beings on the right path.
Milton once said, “Books are the soul of life because they contain the thoughts of life.” “Books have a soul,” Litton said, “because the scriptures are alive. They never perish.”
Human life is filled with many kinds of knowledge. The human mind is a constant source of various ideas. As a result of those multiple ideas conflicts also arise in the inner and outer life of human beings. In such a battle of thought, books prove to be a powerful weapon for human beings. A person’s knowledge may be limited and solitary, but with the help of good books, a man can find the true solution to his doubts. Books are helpful in the struggle for ideas.
Great books have noble ideas. Where there are excellent thoughts, noble feelings, and imaginations, there is Heaven. Lokmanya Tilak said. “I will welcome good books even in hell because good books have such power that they automatically create heaven wherever they are.” No one is sure of the existence of heaven. The higher state of mind of man which is the fruit of excellent thoughts is heaven in itself. Where the human intellect receives the presence of excellent books, it begins to feel like heaven. The current issue presents the articles on some of these texts. Many such texts have remained untouched, and this is just the beginning. Through short articles, we can reach the heart of the texts, understand the core of thoughts, and find inner happiness. When you look at the home library of many great thinkers, you realize that their greatness is shaped by some great books or others.
Literature of such universal eminence that contributed immensely to Indian society is found in Jain texts. For instance, the ancient language text Angavijja edited by Munishri Punyavijayji is the only ancient bibliography of Angavidhya, in which abundant and diverse cultural records are preserved. Vasudeva Hindi written by Sanghadasgani in the Prakrit language contains many mythological and secular stories about the journey of Sri Krishna’s father Vasudeva. Rushibhasita is a collection of thoughts of sages of all three religions, Jain, Buddhist, and Vedic.
In Paschyabhyuday Kavya composed by Acharya Jinsen in Sanskrit, Lord Parshwanath is portrayed as a supplement to the stories of Meghdoot. Another Jain Sanskrit text in the world literature is the Ashtalakshi, which was written by Mahopadhyaya Samaysundarji during the reign of Emperor Akbar in composed in 1593, where the sentence ‘Raja dadat Soukhyam’ made more than a million meanings of this eight-syllable verse.
Sapta Sandhan is an epic in Sanskrit composed by Meghvijaya in the 18th century, in which the lives of Rushabhadeva, Shantinath, Neminath, Parshvanatha, and Mahavira Swami and the popular great men Rama and Krishna are depicted together. Mrigapakshishastra composed by the southern Digambar Jain scholar Hansdev describes the species and forms of birds and cattle. In Kannada literature, the Siri Bhuvalaya Granthstha is written in numerals. In which many bibliographies are compiled as well as many languages are used. A semi-narrative work in Hindi language, Arthkathnk was composed by the 17th-century Jain poet Banarsidasji wrote his autobiography in a very lucid manner in this volume. Thus, there are many important scriptures available in Jain literature that enriched Indian literature.
Let’s get introduced to such scriptures. We wish and pray that this issue will once again lead you to the library.
Dr. Sejal Shah (Ph.D.)