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Ātman (Jainism)

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Title: Ātman (Jainism)  
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Subject: Jain philosophy, Kundakunda, Nirjara, Panch Kalyanaka, Nandavarta
Collection: Conceptions of Self, Jain Philosophy
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Ātman (Jainism)

The Atman (; Sanskrit: आत्मन्, IAST: Ātman) is a philosophical term used within Jainism to identify the soul. It is one's true self (hence generally translated into English as 'Self') beyond identification with the phenomenal reality of worldly existence. As per the Jain cosmology, atman or soul is also the principle of sentience and is one of the tattvas or one of the fundamental substances forming part of the universe. According to The Theosophist, "some religionists hold that Atman (Spirit) and Paramatman (God) are one, whilst others assert that they are distinct ; but a Jain will say that Atman and Paramatman are one as well as distinct."[1] In Jainism, spiritual disciplines, such as abstinence, aid in freeing the atman "from the body by diminishing and finally extinguishing the functions of the body."[2] Jain philosophy is essentially dualistic. It differentiates two substances, the self and the non-self.[3]

See also


  1. ^ The Theosophist. Theosophical Publishing House. 1609. p. 553. For instance, some religionists hold that Atman (Spirit) and Paramatman (God) are one, whilst others assert that they are distinct; but a Jain will say that Atman and Paramatman are one as well as distinct. 
  2. ^ Hubbard, Jamie; Swanson, Paul Loren (1997). Pruning the Bodhi Tree: The Storm Over Critical Buddhism. University of Hawaii Press. p. 246.  
  3. ^ Jaini 2013, p. 1.

Further reading

  • Jaini, Jagmander Lal (2013), Outlines of Jainism, Cambridge University Press,  
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