Moksha (Liberation)


Complete purity of the soul is Moksha. When Jiva is free frem all  the eight Karmas, he gets liberated. Great Ächäryas say that, “As heavily clay-layered pitcher (tumbadu) drowns in the water and it comes to the surface when it is freed of the clay-layers; the soul bound by Karma submerges in the Sansär (cycle of birth and death) and it goes upwards to the Siddhäloka when it is freed of the Karmas.” Of the eight types of Karmas: 1. Knowledge obscuring, 2. Perception obscuring, 3. Deluding (faith & conduct) and 4. Obstructive Karmas are called destructive because they defile the nature of soul, The remaining four, Life-span determining, Body determining, Status determining, and  Situation conferring Karmas are non-destructive. The destructive Karmas are unwholesome and the non-destructive Karmas are both wholesome and unwholesome. When Jiva is bound by excessive unwholesome Karmas, he attains the destiny of hell. When the Jiva is bound by excessive wholesome Karmas, he attains the destiny of heaven. With the majority of unwholesome Karmas, one is born as a creature (animals, birds, insects, etc., called tiryancha  - all living beings other than hellish, heavenly and human beings), and with the majority of wholesome Karmas, one is born as a human being. When Jiva completely succeeds in his Sädhanä, he achieves his ultimate goal, and that is Moksha.


The liberated souls are called siddhas - who are enjoying the pure state of their souls. There are infinite number of siddhäs. The number of siddhas is continuously increasing. There will be an infinite number of more Jivas who will become siddhas in the future. At the present time, the human beings from five Mahä-Videha kshetras (other planets in the universe) are capable of becoming siddhas. Jivas in five Bharat kshetras (one of them where we live) and five Airävat kshetras have to be reborn in the Mahä-Videha kshetras to attain Moksha at the present time, because these two kshetras are in the fifth segment of the regressive time cycle (pancham Ärä, of avasarpini käl), no one can attain Moksha directly from these two kshetras.  This does not mean that the Jivas in these two kshetras can not undertake spiritual pursuit(Sädhanä). One has to continuously shed his Karmas to have the right birth at the right place to go to Moksha. Therefore, one should assume that Moksha is possible from here, and continue his Sädhanä.


Liberated souls are also known as Paramätmä, Ishvar, Bhagavän, God etc. Jains believe that there are infinite number of Gods (liberated souls).


Per Jain beliefs, Arihant is the living God. He has absolute knowledge. Therefore, he reveals the essential and real form of the universe. He revealed that the world is without a beginning, and it has no end. The universe does undergo continuous change. Production and disposal are always going on.  Behind this eternal process there does not exist anyone's planning or organization. The whole universe is a self-regulated one. For living beings, his/her Karma plays an important role. According to his past Karma, his present fate is decided, and his future will be decided based on his present and the balance of his past Karma. Jains do believe in God. Our God is Jina. The word Jina literally means "the Victor" or “the Liberator”,  the one who has freed himself/herself from the bondage of Karma by conquering räga (attachment - deceit and greed) & dvesha (aversion - anger and ego). Lord  Mahavir was the last reformer of Jainism. He should not be mistaken as the founder of Jainism. We had first Tirthankar, Rushabhadev in the third segment of this Avasarpini (regressive half cycle). The remaining 23 Tirthankaras lived during the fourth segment of the Avasarpini. At present, we are in the fifth segment.


No one manages the universe, and the universe is self-regulated. Once the Jiva is liberated, he does not have any attachment to the material world or material affairs. His relationship to the material world is permanently terminated. In Moksha, there is no pain, no material happiness, no sufferings, no obstructions, no birth, no death, no sense-organs, no afflictions, no delusion, no deceit, no possessiveness, no sleep, no hunger, no desire. Siddhas have only infinite knowledge, infinite perception, infinite conduct, unlimited energy, eternality, formlessness,  and complete equality in Moksha. The state of liberation is not describable in words. The best possible material happiness is not even equal to the smallest possible fraction of the permanent happiness that Siddhas have in Moksha. Siddha has complete pure consciousness that can be achieved by the one who endeavors as expounded by the omniscients. That is the state of ultimate holiness, ultimate efficiency and unlimited energy.


Moksha is the supreme condition. It is not describable in words, because words are pudgals, and in Moksha, there is no activities of words. There is no room for applying any logic. This is not the subject of intelligence. Sidhhas have no attachments, therefore, they have no grief. Moksha is the subject of experience. How can a mute person, describe the taste of the delicious food? This does not mean that the delicious food is not tasty. One can understand and enjoy the taste of the delicious food by tasting it. Similarly, no person here can describe the Moksha, one has to experience it. Whatever is being expressed about Moksha,  is like the taste of delicious food described by a dumb person.


Every Jiva should have the goal of liberating himself from the karmic bondage. As one sheds his Karmas, continues to purify his soul, and becomes lighter; he begins to experience what the liberation is like. The human life is successful only if one endeavors to eradicate his Karmas, and tries to free himself from the slavery of the Karmas that has been in existence since the time without beginning. The sole purpose of the religion, Sädhanä and the spiritual practice is that one frees himself from the karmic bondage and attains Moksha.


One experiences happiness when his disease is cured; when his enemies are destroyed or when one gets something he wanted to possess. What kind of happiness would one experience if he is free from all diseases; if he has no enemies and if all his desires are fulfilled? What one gets from Moksha is infinite times greater happiness (peace, bliss, joy) than this. It is felicity arising from no worldly circumstances, but the Jivas in Sansär who are accustomed to enjoy low pleasures cannot think of that.

15 Kinds of Siddhas

All siddhas are equal, and have no differences among them. They can however be described as of the following fifteen types based on what they had been in their last life. (1) Jin - Tirthankars who became siddhas. (2) Ajin: Non-Tirthankars who became siddhas. (3) Tirth: Those who attained Moksha after establishing the Tirth (4) Atirth: Those who became Siddhas without establishing the Tirth like Marudevi (5) Grihasthaling (Householders) like Bharat Chakravarti. (6) Anyaling  - those who were initiated in the different religions. (7) Swaling - those who were initiated as Jain ascetics. (8, 9 and 10): Those who were in three different genders - impotent, women and men (11) Pratyekbuddha: Some external  incident was the cause. (11) Swayambuddha - who are seIf‑awakened. (13) Buddhabodhita - who were guided by the right Tirthankars, right guru or right  books. (14) Ek: Only one Siddha at one time (15) Anek: Many becoming Siddhas at one time.


Efficacy of  Navtattva

Samyaktva or SamyakDarshan is attained when one fully understands the nine fundamentals of  Jiva, Ajiva etc. Those who do not have the detailed knowledge of the Navtattva can, however, attain samyaktva by ardently believing in the Navtattva. Everything said by the Tirthankars must be true because they have no reason to lie.. Falsehood can be indulged only on account of attachment, hatred or ignorance. Since Tirthankars are free from such defilements, whatever they state is bound to be true.


The philosophy of Nav Tattva is very practical. Omniscients have explained us the existence of the living beings, and their relationship with Karmas through these nine aspects. One stops the influx of Karmas through samvar, and eradicates the Karmas through nirjarä; and by these two processes, samvar and nirjarä, one liberates himself from the karmic bondage, and attains the ultimate goal, the liberation (Moksha). One should  therefore pursue the path of samvar  and nirjarä to be successful in discovering the truth about his own Self.