Chapter 18 – Six Substances Part II – Non-Living Substances (Ajiv)
Non-living Substances (Ajiv)
Anything that does not have life or consciousness is Ajiv. Ajiv literally means without a soul and therefore, they cannot accumulate any karma. They do not have birth, death, pleasure, or pain; they are Achetan (inert). Examples of Ajivs are: a box, car, fan, television, photo frame, iron, watch, etc.
Jain Philosophy has classified Ajivs into the following five categories:
(1) Dharmästikäya (Medium of Motion).
(2) Adharmästikäya (Medium of Rest).
(3) Äkäshästikäya (Space).
(4) Pudgalästikäya (Matter).
(5) Käl (Time).
Dharmästikäya (Medium of Motion)
Dharmästikäya is made up of two words: Dharma and Astikäya. The term Dharma here does not refer to religion, but means the medium of motion. Astikäya means collection of spaces. It denotes the medium of motion for things in the universe. In the absence of this medium, Jiv and other matters would be unable to move. This medium prevails in lok (cosmic space), but is absent in alok (trans cosmic space)
Its primary function is to help in the movement of soul and matter in a similar way water provides a medium for fish to move. It exists in the entire cosmic universe (Lokäkäsh)
Adharmästikäya (Medium of Rest)
This word is also made up of two words: Adharma and Astikäya. Here again, Adharma does not refer to a lack of religion, but rather it means the medium of rest. In the absence of this medium, jivs and other things would continuously move. This medium also prevails in lok, but is absent in alok.
Its primary function is to help to rest the movement of soul and matter in a similar way. People rest in the shade of a tree. It exists in the entire cosmic universe (Lokäkäsh)
Äkäshästikäya is made up of two words: Äkäsha and Astikäya. Whole space in the universe is called Äkäsha. In Jainism, Äkäsha is divided into two parts: Lokäkäsh (Loka or cosmic space) and Alokäkäsh (Aloka or trans cosmic space). Jiv, Pudgal, Dharmästikäya, and Adharmästikäya exist only in Lokäkäsh. Alokäkäsh is an empty space and does not contain any Jiv, Pudgal, Käl, Dharmästikäya, and Adharmästikäya.
The qualities are as follows:
- Provides room to soul, matter, medium of motion, and medium of rest
- Pervades everywhere (infinite)
- Supports everything and thus it is self supported
- Has no form, color, taste, smell, and touch
- Does not perform any active action (inactive)
- Provides accommodation to soul and matter of their actions
- Is one and whole
The word Pudgal is made up of two words: Pud means addition and Gal means division. In other words, what continuously changes by addition and/or division is called the Pudgal or the matter. All the matters in the universe are called Pudgals.
Matter is a nonliving substance. It is the only substance, which possesses a physical body consisting of mass and volume. Its qualities are as follows:
- Possesses a physical body
- Has qualities, which can be perceived by our senses of touch, taste, smell, sight, and/or hearing
- Possesses color
- Does not have consciousness
- Does not have any knowledge
- Are of infinite number
The smallest particle of matter is known Paramänu (atom). It occupies only one unit of space called Pradesha.
There are four categories of matter:
Skandha (whole matter):
Any object, which has a mass of matter, is called Skandha. e.g. stick, stone, knife, a particle of sand
Skandha-Desha (portion of matter):
Desha means a part, portion, or division. An undetached portion of Skandha is called Skandha Desha. When a part of the Skandha (Skandha Desha) is separated from the whole, it also becomes another Skandha. e.g. The hand of a statue is known as a Skandha Desha but when separated from the statue is known as Skandha.
Skandha-Pradesha (smallest particle of matter):
The smallest undetached portion of Skandha, which cannot be further divided, is called Skandha Pradesha.
Paramänu or Anu (atom):
When the smallest portion of the matter is separated from its Skandha, it is called Paramänu or anu. Paramänu matter cannot be further sub-divided, cut, or pierced.
Karma or Karmic Matter (Karma Pudgal):
Karma is one of the categories of matter. It is known as karmic matter (karma Pudgal). Karma particles are of very fine matter and are not perceptible to the senses. The entire universe is filled with such karmic matter. Karmic matter from eternity covers every living being. It is the karmic matter that keeps the soul from the realization of its true nature. It is due to karma that one feels pleasure and pain, reincarnates into different forms of life, acquires a certain type of physical body, and the duration of life.
Käl means time, which measures changes in living beings and non-living substances. It is not the cause of such changes. A child becomes a young person, a young person becomes an old person, and the old person dies. In other words, something, which is new, becomes old, worn, and torn over a period of time. All of these changes do not happen because of time. Käl is merely the measure of time, over, which those changes occur. The past, present, and future are different modes of time and are measured in terms of years, months, days,hours, minutes or seconds. According to what is commonly known for all practical purposes, a second is the smallest measurement of time. Jainism however, recognizes a very tiny measurement of time known as Samay, which is an infinitely small part of a second.
Two views exist in Jainism with regards to time.
(1) Time is an imaginary thing; it has no real existence.
(2) Time has a real existence consisting of innumerable time atoms.
The smallest indivisible portion of time is called Samay. Combination of Samays are called moment, second, minute, hour, day, month, year, etc.
Innumerable Samays One Ävali (time required to blink an eye)
16,777,216 Ävalis One Muhurt (48 minutes)
30 Muhurts One day
15 days One fortnight
2 fortnights One month
12 months One year
5 Years One Yuga
8,400,000 x 8,400,000 years One Purva (70,560,000,000,000 Years)
Innumerable years One Palyopams*
10 x 10,000,000 x 10,000,000 Palyopams One Sägaropam
10 x 10,000,000 x 10,000,000 Sägaropams Avasarpini or Utsarpini (Half Cycle)
20 x 10,000,000 x 10,000,000 Sägaropams One Time Cycle
Time is infinite, without any beginning or end. Time is divided into infinite equal time cycles (Kälchakras). Every time cycle is further sub-divided in two equal halves. The first half is the progressive cycle or ascending orders, called Utsarpini. The other half is the regressive cycle or the descending order called Avasarpini. Every Utsarpini and Avasarpini is divided into six unequal periods called Äräs. During the Utsarpini half cycle; progress, development, happiness, strength, age, body, religious trends, etc., go from the worst conditions to the best. During the Avasarpini half cycle, progress, development, happiness, strength, age, body, religious trends, etc. go from the best conditions to the worst. Presently, we are in the fifth Ärä of the Avasarpini phase. When the Avasarpini phase ends the Utsarpini phase begins. The Kälchakra repeats and continues forever.
Each Ärä is divided into six parts. The duration and the name of each part is as follows: The six Äräs are:
- Sukham Sukham Käl- Happy Happy (happiness all the time).
- Sukham Käl- Happy (happiness).
- Sukham Dukham Käl- Happy Unhappy (happiness with some unhappiness).
- Dukham Sukham Käl- Unhappy Happy (unhappiness with some happiness).
- Dukham Käl- Unhappy (unhappiness).
- Dukham Dukham Käl- Unhappy Unhappy (unhappiness all the time).
Six parts of Declining Era (Avasarpini) Time Cycle
01 Happy_happy 4 x 1014 Sägaropams
02 Happy 3 x 1014 Sägaropams
03 Happy_unhappy 2 x 1014 Sägaropams
04 Unhappy_happy 1 x 1014 Sägaropams – 42000 years**
05 Unhappy¹ 21000 years¹
06 Unhappy_unhappy 21000 years
1 This is current Ärä, which began about 2500 years ago
Six parts of Rising Era (Utsarpini) Time Cycle
01 Unhappy_unhappy 21000 years
02 Unhappy 21000 years
03 Unhappy_happy 1 x 1014 Sägaropams – 42000 years
04 Happy_unhappy 2 x 1014 Sägaropams
05 Happy 3 x 1014 Sägaropams
06 Happy_happy 4 x 1014 Sägaropams
1. Sukham Sukham Käl – This is a time of great During this phase people are very tall and live for a very long period of time. All the needs and desires of the people are fulfilled by ten different kinds of Kalpa-vriksha (wish-granting trees). These trees provide places to live, clothes, pots and pans, good food, fruits, sweets, harmonious music, jewelry, beautiful flowers, radiant lamps, and a bright light at night. There is no killing, crime, or vices. There is no need of religion an no Tirthankar exist during this time period.
2. Sukham Käl – This is also a time of happiness, but it is not great The wish- granting trees still continue to provide for the people’s needs, but the people are not as tall and do not live as long. There is no need of religion an no Tirthankar exist during this time period.
3. Sukham Dukham Käl – This is a phase consisting of more happiness than misery. During this period the Kalpa-vrikshas do not consistently provide what is The first Tirthankar of a given half time cycle is born towards the end of this Ärä. Towards the end of this period in the current time cycle Rushabhdev became the first Tirthankar. He realized that things were going to get worse. So, he taught the people useful arts including, pot making, farming, and cooking to enable them to depend upon themselves. He introduced a political system and became the first king. This Ärä came to an end three years and eight months after the nirvana of Rushabhdev. The first Chakravarti (king of kings) Bharat, his brother Bähubali, well known for his strength, Brähmi, his sister, who devised eighteen different alphabets and, Sundari, also his sister, who devised math, were Rushabhdev’s children.
4. Dukham Sukham Käl – This is a phase of more misery, sorrow, and suffering than The other twenty-three Tirthankars and eleven Chakravartis were born during this Ärä, which came to an end three years and eight months after the last Tirthankar Lord Mahävir’s Nirvän.
5. Dukham Käl – This is the currently prevailing Ärä. It is an Ärä of unhappiness, which began a little over 2,500 years ago and will last for a total of 21,000 No one born during this period will gain liberation in his or her present life, because no one will be capable to follow the true religion to the fullest extent. It is said that by the end of this Ärä, the Jain religion will be extinct (only temporarily, to be revived in the next half cycle by future Tirthankars).
6. Dukham Dukham Käl – This is a time of great misery and unhappiness. During this time, people will experience nothing but suf There will be no trace of religious activity. The life span of people will be very short, exceeding no more than twenty years. Most people will be non-vegetarian and the social structure will be destroyed. The weather will become extreme, the days will be very hot, and the nights will be very cold.
At the end of this Ärä, a period of Utsarpini will start and the time wheel will take an upward swing. Miseries will gradually diminish and happiness will increase until every phase is once again reached. 23 Tirthankars will be born during the 3rd Ärä and last one during beginning the 4th Ärä of the next half cycle. These cycles go on forever.