Jainism and its Context in Indian Philosophy and Literature

Event Start Date: 

Nov 13 2023 – 09:00 to Nov 24 2023 – 17:00

Event Category: 

School of the Wisdom

Event Theme

The School of the Wisdom



Event Person: 

Dr Jayandra Soni & Dr Luitgard Soni

Theme: Jainism and its Context in Indian Philosophy and Literature

Facilitators:  Dr Jayandra Soni & Dr Luitgard Soni

Dates: 13 – 24 November 2023
Daily: Meditation 8 – 8.30 AM, Classes 8.30 – 11.00 AM and 2.30 – 5.00 PM

Venue: TS at Adyar, India (not online)

APPLICATION: click here


Course Description (pdf attached)

The aim of the course is to highlight Jaina contributions in the context of Hinduism and Buddhism. One key theory accepted by all these 3 indigenous streams is the karma and rebirth theory. This in particular needs some explanation because each of the streams interprets the theory in its own way. For example, the Jainas see karma as fine, invisible subtle particles of matter which become associated with the sentient self (jīva) and influence it positively or negatively.

            In the context of philosophy, it is useful to see the Jaina ontological categories of sentience and insentience (jīva and ajīva) in comparison and contrast to the Sāṅkhya/Yoga ontological terms puruṣa and prakṛti.  It will be shown that this shared duality signifies several noteworthy differences, for example, that the Jainas attribute energy (vīrya) to the sentient principle jīva, (similar to śakti in Śaivism, but for different reasons). Sāṅkhya/Yoga ascribe energy (sakriya, SK 10) to prakṛti or matter as such. Both Jainism and Sāṅkhya/Yoga, however, share the same view that the human psyche is material. Sāṅkhya/Yoga clearly define terms such as the intellect/reason, ego, mind, and internal sense organs (sight, etc.) and supply clear definitions of their functions (buddhiahaṃkāramanasjñānendriyas). The category of mind or manas is particularly revealing for their differences, for example, with Jainism seeing a modifica­tion of the manas as a means of knowledge, namely manaḥ-paryaya (telepathy) as a pramāṇa.

            It will be illustrated in the course that the Jainas are noted since very early times for using didactic stories to elucidate ethical concepts, rules of behaviour and crucial points of the doctrine. The corpus of stories which they carefully collected bears evidence to this. It is a special cultural achievement that the Jainas collected, preserved and modified such exemplary stories in voluminous anthologies and literary works. The stories serve as useful tool to exemplify intricate details of their world-view.

            In view of the fact the Jainism has not enjoyed much prominence as is evident in the research on Buddhism and Hinduism, the course will etch out selected topics to underscore the Jaina contribution to Indian philosophy and literature. For Jaina philosophy the Tattvārthasūtra and its commentary Sarvārthasiddhi will be studied.

The course will be done on the basis of 10 themes which make up the syllabus:

1. Introduction to Indian philosophy, including the karma and rebirth theory.

2. The Sāṅkhya and Yoga systems of Indian Philosophy (JS).

3. Sāṅkhya and Yoga systems of Indian Philosophy Continued (JS).

4. Introduction to Jainism (JS).

5. Jaina Narrative Literature (LS).        

6. The Jaina theory of knowledge (JS).

7. Jaina ethics and its emphasis on non-violence (ahiṃsā), including Ecology and Human-Animal Relations (LS).

8. Worldliness (bhoga) and Renunciation/Asceticism (vairāgya) in Jaina Narratives (LS).

9. Death and Dying in Jainism (LS)

10. Recapitulation of and Discussion on the above themes (JS and LS).


Dr Luitgard Soni has a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Salzburg, Austria, and studied Sanskrit, Indian Philo­sophy and Hindi at the Banaras Hindu University. She was affiliated to the Department of Indology and Tibetology, University of Marburg, Germany, from 1992 to 2012. She is now retired and lives in Innsbruck, Austria, continuing her research mainly on Jaina literature. See her website for further details and publications:


Dr Jayandra Soni retired in May 2012 from the Department of Indology and Tibetology, University of Marburg, Germany, where he taught Indian languages (Sanskrit, Hindi and Gujarati) and Indian philosophy from 1991–2012. Born and brought up in South Africa where he did his BA in 1972 (University of Durban, Westville), he studied further at the Banaras Hindu University, India (PhD 1978) and the McMaster University, Canada, for a second Phd (1987). He now lives in Innsbruck, Austria, continuing his own studies and teaching at the University of Innsbruck, Austria, as a part-time lecturer. See his website for further details and publications:


Event Status: 


Sign Up Link: 

Application required

What is provided: 

Accommodation is provided during the event duration. Meals are optionally provided. Sign up for it separately

PDF icon Course Description364.44 KB
PDF icon Poster Jainism394.85 KB

Jainism and its Context in Indian Philosophy and Literature


Theosophical Society

Blavatsky Avenue

600020 Adyar, Chennai


Email address: theschoolofthewisdom@gmail.com

See map: Google Maps



– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –


 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

The School of the Wisdom aims at bringing each student to survey life ‘from the centre’, which is intuitive awareness. There can be no Wisdom without an ever-increasing sense of Wonder. Essential in the progress towards Wisdom is a growing intimacy with all aspects of Nature.

The SOW was inaugurated in 1949 by C. Jinarajadasa, the fourth International President of the TS, to revive the 1922 Adyar School initiated by Annie Besant. This school was named Brahmavidyā Āśrama, which has almost the same meaning as the School of the Wisdom.


The SOW is meant for members of the Theosophical Society to deepen their understanding in theosophy, making it a living force in daily life. Students may apply for all or some of the School of the Wisdom sessions in one form and are expected to attend all the classes in the session chosen.

1. Please, before applying click here to download and read the Online Class Decorum.

2. Fill in the Application Form which you find for each Session’s page


For students joining any SOW programme, we recommend reading the following:

01 – The School of the Wisdom by Jinarajadasa and Radha Burnier (PDF)
02 – An Unending Path by Tim Boyd (PDF)
03 – Freedom of Thought and Freedom of Society (PDF)
04 – Why Theosophy is left undefined by N. Sri Ram (PDF)
05 – Adyar as a Spiritual Centre by J. Krishnamurti (PDF)
06 – What Is Truth? by H. P. Blavatsky (PDF)

 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –


 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

La Escuela de la Sabiduría tiene como objetivo llevar a cada estudiante a examinar la vida «desde el centro», que es la conciencia intuitiva.  No puede haber Sabiduría sin un creciente sentido de Maravilla. Esencial en el progreso hacia la Sabiduría, es una creciente intimidad con todos los aspectos de la Naturaleza.

La SOW fue inaugurada en 1949 por C. Jinarajadasa, el cuarto presidente internacional de la ST, para revivir la Escuela Adyar de 1926 iniciada por Annie Besant. Esta escuela se llamó Brahmavidyā Āśrama, que tiene casi el mismo significado que la Escuela de la Sabiduría.


La SOW está pensada para que los miembros de la Sociedad Teosófica profundicen su comprensión de la teosofía, de modo que la conviertan en una fuerza viva en la vida diaria. Los estudiantes pueden aplicar para todas o algunas de las sesiones de la Escuela de la Sabiduría en un solo formulario y se espera que asistan a todas las clases en la sesión elegida.

1. Por favor, antes de postularse, haga clic aquí para descargar y leer las directrices de las clases en línea.

2. Complete el formulario de solicitud que encontrará en la página de cada sesión


Para los estudiantes que se unen a cualquier programa de la SOW, recomendamos leer lo siguiente:

01a – La Escuela de la Sabiduría Jinarajadasa 1949 (PDF)
01b – La Escuela de la Sabiduría Jinarajadasa 1950 (PDF)
01c – La Escuela de la Sabiduría Radha Burnier (PDF)
02 – Un Sendero sin final por Tim-Boyd (PDF)
03 – Libertad de Pensamiento & Libertad  de la Sociedad Teosófica (PDF)

Ir arriba