(Last Updated on : 12/09/2018)
Duties of a Common Man hold a prominent position in the Jain Philosophy
. The philosophical tenets of Jainism say that a layman should have complete faith in the teachings in the guru and necessarily must follow the path of righteousness. A common man who has the knowledge of the true doctrine of the true God
(Jina) and the right master (Guru
) and who is free from 5 offences and does not have any doubt about the faith, the teachings and the truths of Jainism
. Such a layman can take upon himself to fulfil the 12 Vratas
, namely 5 Anuvratas, 3 Gunavratas and 4 Siksha Vratas.
The 5 Anuvratas are as follows:
not to kill or injure a living being intentionally.
to say the truth.
not to steal.
to live in chastity.
5. Parigraha Tyaga:
not to be greedy.
Observing the Anuvratas mentioned above is supported by the observance of the following Gunavratas. They are:
1. Dig Vrata:
The layman takes upon himself to extend his journeys in each direction only up to a definite point.
2. Upabhogaparibhoga Vrata:
He vows to make use of only number of things necessary for life, and to avoid the others.
3. Anarthadanda Vrata:
to keep himself away from all that is harmful or neither to wish bad for someone.
Besides these there are 4 Siksha Vratas that are to be followed by a common man. They are as follows:
1. Samayika Vrata:
A layman vows to meditate daily in imperturbable peace for one or several Muhurtas. This happens in the morning, noon time and evening.
2. Desavakasika Vrata:
He vows not to leave certain boundaries for a definite period, not to use things, eatables, etc.
3. Posadha Vrata:
He vows to fast through 24 hours on and live as monk.
4. Atithisamvibhaga Vrata:
He vows to offer to guests, particularly monks, what they need by right.
11 Pratimas are the stages of perfection. A layman also observes 11 Pratimas which bring him closer to asceticism. They are as follows:
means belief in the Tirthankaras
, right teacher and the Jain faith.
means accurate observance of the 12 vows.
means three meditations
on full-moon and new-moon days and on the 8th and the 14th of every half of a lunar month.
5. Sacitla Tyaga
means abstinence from eating of living beings.
6. Ratribhukta Tyaga
means avoiding eating of living between sunset and sunrise.
renunciation of physical love/ marriage
8. Arambha Tyaga
means giving up all worldly activities, involving injury to living beings.
9. Parigraha Tyaga
means giving up possession.
10. Anumati Tyaga
means renunciation by a pious man of the proper food that is prepared for him and eating only that what has been left over.
11. Udista Tyaga
means acceptance of monks dress and looking for a temple
or solitude to meditate there without being disturbed.
Hence, a layman obtains the duties one after the other, and while doing so, maintains the vow of the each preceding last stage corresponds practically to monkhood, only that the consecration of the order is missing.