Every religion accepts non-violence, but Jainism strictly
follows it. Similarly, every religion states the importance
of right vision and judgment on its basis. The importance
that has been granted to faith is fully matched by the emphasis
that has been laid on logic in Jainism. Where basis of religion
conduct is laid on non-violence, its origin is provided by
Anekantavada the doctrine of many-sided reality. No
other religion other than Jainism has given the detailed explanation
as well as importance to this concept.
Jainism deeply believes in non-violence. non-violence through
mind, body, speech, conduct, thought. Because Jainism believes
in the equality of souls. All the living beings on this earth,
no matter how big or small, wants to be happy and no body
wants to suffer.
So Jainism follows the principle of Anekantavada.
Anekantavada stands for a philosophical concept
about looking and understanding any object from different
directions and different view points. It believes that to
view any object from a single point of view generates only
partial truth about the object. Any object might seem very
ugly from one angle but the same object might seem very beautiful
from some other angle. So, is the object good or bad depends
upon from where it is seen. Poison is very bad for everybody
because it can kill, but for a medicine manufacturer it can
be very good because he uses it in his medicines that save
life. Another example can be of a fruit. This fruit is stuffed,
tasty, aromatic, soft to touch, beautiful color, nice shaped
etc., as well it might also have a good capacity to please
hunger. It could also posses some kind of medicinal values.
So, in this way this fruit becomes multifaceted. So it is
important to judge any thing from all its aspects to access
its real value.
Let us imagine a person who is a father, husband, son, brother,
friend, uncle, boss or employee; so, if his son calls his
Dad, he is not wrong. If his wife calls him husband
then she is not incorrect, if his niece calls him uncle that
he is correct, if his mother calls him son then is also right.
So this explains what exactly I am trying to say.
Anekantavada means a wider vision of the space
around any object before passing any judgment against it because
every object possesses many characteristics.
Seven fold judgment
The object has been described as the possessor of infinite
characteristics. When we select one of the characteristics
with its contrary aspect and judge it, this kind of judgment
has seven forms; hence, it is called seven-fold judgment.
If the object is considered to be as a glass then:
The glass exists it has its own individuality and its
The glass does not exist the same glass from the point
of view of another might be non-existent (non-existence).
The glass exists and does not exist when it is thought
about the two aspects gradually that the thing can be existent
as well as non-existent.
The glass is indescribable when we think of two aspects
together as to the object exists or not then the object becomes
The glass exists and it is indescribable under this
judgment the thing cannot be spoken about generally. It might
be this or that. So it exists but
is not explainable.
The glass does not exists and it is indescribable
here the thing that is indescribable because it does not exists
yet be spoken from a certain point of view.
The glass exists, does not exists and is indescribable
this is when the thing from a certain point of view
is this from another not this may
be in a general sense indescribable also.
The foundation of Anekantvada or the whole fundamental
of it is that when the truth of a particular aspect of a thing
is to be judged, then it should be done from all aspects,
keeping all views of different directions in mind.