Jainism & Islam at a Glance;

By Ijaz Chaudry

 

Difference between Jainism and Islam, Islamic point of view;

 

Jainism;

Jainism is an ancient religion from India that teaches that the way to liberation and bliss is to live lives of harmlessness and renunciation. The essence of Jainism is concern for the welfare of every being in the universe and for the health of the universe itself.

 

Islam;

The above is a nice thought but the world does not always favour the harmless and the renouncing.  There will be time when one has to stand up for their rights.  Non aggression is a Muslim trait with exception to aggression.  It is allowed to defend oneself in the wake of aggression.   God has also provided us with provisions including the nice jobs we might have, which we should appreciate and enjoy.  Giving up all pleasures of life for the sake of religion is very stern.  Islam allows all good things which do not harm us to have and to enjoy and to be appreciative of God who has provided these ornaments.    

 

Jainism;

Jains believe that animals and plants, as well as human beings, contain living souls. Each of these souls is considered of equal value and should be treated with respect and compassion

 

Islam;

Quran (the Final Testament) tells us only humans have souls;

[2:54]  Recall that Moses said to his people, "O my people, you have wronged your souls by worshiping the calf. You must repent to your Creator. You shall kill your egos. This is better for you in the sight of your Creator." He did redeem you. He is the Redeemer, Most Merciful.

[2:72]  You had killed a soul, then disputed among yourselves. GOD was to expose what you tried to conceal.

[2:73]  We said, "Strike (the victim) with part (of the heifer)." That is when GOD brought the victim back to life, and showed you His signs, that you may understand.

Thus it is okay to kill animal to eat etc.

[27:20]  He inspected the birds, and noted: "Why do I not see the hoopoe? Why is he missing?

[27:21]  "I will punish him severely or sacrifice him, unless he gives me a good excuse."

God has provided us with delicious meats which come from cattle and other hunted animals we should eat them and be appreciative of God for creating these for our sustenance.

[5:1]  O you who believe, you shall fulfil your covenants. Permitted for you to eat are the livestock, except those specifically prohibited herein. You shall not permit hunting throughout Hajj pilgrimage. GOD decrees whatever He wills.

 

Jainism;

Jains believe in reincarnation and seek to attain ultimate liberation - which means escaping the continuous cycle of birth, death and rebirth so that the immortal soul lives forever in a state of bliss. Liberation is achieved by eliminating all karma from the soul.

 

Islam;

Muslims do not believe in reincarnation, but they believe in resurrection from dead on the Day of Judgment.  This is our last chance on earth to redeem ourselves and denounce all idolatry and worship God Alone.  Whoever redeems itself will live happy life here on earth and when they die they will go straight to Paradise which is ultimate liberation of the souls.

 

Jainism;

Jainism is a religion of self-help. There are no gods or spiritual beings that will help human beings.

 

Islam;

Muslims believe in One God that sustains this universe and all the creatures therein.  There are several examples of this phenomenon, for example God sends down from the sky rain to water the crops at precise time when crop needs water and ripen the crops for us to eat, He subdues animals both for rides and for food, He helps grow beautiful flowers for us to enjoy etc.  There are so many blessings on us by God that we cannot encompass it.

[14:34]  And He gives you all kinds of things that you implore Him for. If you count GOD's blessings, you can never encompass them. Indeed, the human being is transgressing, unappreciative.

[24:43]  Do you not realize that GOD drives the clouds, then gathers them together, then piles them on each other, then you see the rain coming out of them? He sends down from the sky loads of snow to cover whomever He wills, while diverting it from whomever He wills. The brightness of the snow almost blinds the eyes.

 

Jainism;

Jains are divided into two major sects; the Digambara (meaning "sky clad") sect and the Svetambara (meaning "white clad") sect.

 

Islam;

Islam forbids sects and unifies all religions under one umbrella called Submission or Islam;

[5:69]  Surely, those who believe, those who are Jewish, the converts, and the Christians; any of them who (1) believe in GOD and (2) believe in the Last Day, and (3) lead a righteous life, have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.

 

Jainism;

Jains do not believe in a God or gods in the way that many other religions do, but they do believe in divine (or at least perfect) beings who are worthy of devotion.  The Jain view of God enables Jainism to explain the evil and suffering that exists in the world without the intellectual difficulties faced by religions that have an omnipotent, wholly good, creator God at their heart. Where religions such as Christianity find the problem of evil one of their toughest tests, Jains use the existence of evil as a reason for denying the existence of an omnipotent, wholly good, Creator.

 

Islam;

Muslims totally believe in One God and devote their religion to Him alone.  Islam does not face any intellectual difficulties explaining the evils of this world.  Quran explains that each one of us made a decision before our Universe was created to what we wanted to be a believer or a non-believer.  This happened many years ago when we were all member of the High Society in Heaven and Satan challenged God’s Omnipotence, the beings who sided with him were humans and Devil.  Before Humans and Devils were exiled to Earth, Satan asked God to respite him and his community from punishment; God told him that He will until the Day of Judgment.  Hence the Satan and his community is to be blamed on what evil is on Earth.  The people who totally sided with Satan do bad things and die as disbelievers and people who did not side with him but were not sure, do good things and end up as believers or good doers.  However, there is another level to this, what good one does may not be enough to be a believer, because believers have to believe in God Alone as well.

 

Jainism;

If God created the world, where was he before creation? If you say he was transcendent then, and needed no support, where is he now?

 

Islam;

God always have been here.  The concept of time started after the Big Bang, this is scientifically proven fact.  And God is the One who initiated the Big Bang, thus as far as time is concerned He has always been here and since He initiated Big Bang He was there before time began.

[21:30]  Do the unbelievers not realize that the heaven and the earth used to be one solid mass that we exploded into existence? And from water we made all living things. Would they believe?

God is everywhere, you cannot see God, but you can see His manifestation everywhere.  The rain, the sun the moon running in its orbits, the boats sailing on the sea, the food which we eat all these are creation of God and reminds us of Him every minute of the Day or Night.  God is the one who has set the laws of science which holds together our Universe.  He is the One who gives life and takes life, these are all signs of God.

[3:190]  In the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the alternation of night and day, there are signs for those who possess intelligence.

[6:99]  He is the One who sends down from the sky water, whereby we produce all kinds of plants. We produce from the green material multitudes of complex grains, palm trees with hanging clusters, and gardens of grapes, olives and pomegranate; fruits that are similar, yet dissimilar. Note their fruits as they grow and ripen. These are signs for people who believe.

 

Jainism;

If God is ever perfect and complete, how could the will to create have arisen in him? If, on the other hand, he is not perfect, he could no more create the universe than a potter could.

 

Islam;

God is perfect and complete.  God did not create this Universe for play, this Universe and its inhabitant’s, have special purpose.  The purpose for us is to denounce idolatry and join God’s Kingdom, before it is too late.  This is our final chance to redeem ourselves.  As I mentioned earlier we use to live happy life before the Feud in Heavenly Society.  God had given us free will and we decided to side with Satan, when God is the One who had all the Power and we should have sided with Him.  Since God is Most Merciful He created Seven Universe and, Earth settled us here despite what we did we being unappreciative of Him, gave us another chance to redeem ourselves.  This is Selfless Act of God which does not cater for ego or bad motive, but to create for us this Universe in order for us to redeem our souls.

[44:38]  We did not create the heavens and the earth, and everything between them, just to play.

 [44:39]  We created them for a specific purpose, but most of them do not know.

                [44:40]  The Day of Decision awaits them all.

[44:41]  That is the day when no friend can help his friend in any way; no one can be helped.

 [44:42]  Only those who attain mercy from GOD. He is the Almighty, Most Merciful.

 

Jainism;

Jains do not believe that there is a god who must be obeyed

 

Islam;

All the laws of the universe are instituted by God which humans and all creation obey, this in itself recognizes the fact that there is God

 

Jainism;

No single being had the skill to make this world -- For how can an immaterial god create that which is material?

 

Islam;

We do not fully encompass the power, of God we just know what we are told about Him in the scriptures.  Quran is clear in explaining the fact that the wicked did not witness the creation process.  Since we all sided with Satan to some extent we were left out from the knowledge of creation.

[18:51]  I never permitted them to witness the creation of the heavens and the earth, nor the creation of themselves. Nor do I permit the wicked to work in My kingdom.

 

Jainism;

Jains do not believe in any god who will respond to prayer or intervene in the world. The beings that Jains worship have no interest in human beings.

The beings that Jains worship are beyond human contact and they cannot intervene in the world.

 

Islam;

The worship seems useless if no benefit is observed from it, thus Jains worship seems pointless.  Muslim’s totally believe that God intervenes whenever necessary and supplication is another form of worship which also pays dividends.

[14:7]  Your Lord has decreed: "The more you thank Me, the more I give you." But if you turn unappreciative, then My retribution is severe.

 

Jainism;

There is no God who demands worship

The perfect beings that Jains worship have no interest in human beings.

Any being that desired anything, would not be perfect and thus not a god.

 

Islam;

The worship Muslim’s take part in is for their own benefit, because this world is full of evil and we need to side with good rather than evil.  And the Ultimate Good is God.  If we worship God He protects us from evil gives us happiness and ultimately end up in Paradise which indeed is a great reward.   God does not desire anything because He is capable of doing anything, He is compassionate towards believers.

[2:207]  Then there are those who dedicate their lives to serving GOD; GOD is compassionate towards such worshipers.

 

Jainism;

There is no God compared to whom each of us will always be inferior

Every soul has the potential to become perfect. All perfect souls are equal.

 

Islam;

Soul could be perfect but soul cannot create the universe or pour rain on the crop, for this purpose all souls are subservient to God

 

Jainism;

Universe;

Jains believe that the universe has always existed and will always exist. It is regulated by cosmic laws and kept going by its own energy processes. This concept of the universe is compatible with modern scientific thinking.

 

Islam;

Science believe that universe did not exist always, it was the Big Bang which initiated the universe and Quran acknowledges this fact.  Thus the statement is incorrect both based on science and religion;

                The Big Bang Theory Confirmed

[21:30]  Do the unbelievers not realize that the heaven and the earth used to be one solid mass that we exploded into existence? And from water we made all living things. Would they believe?

 

This article has direct reference to material on www.bbc.co.uk/religion.  Thus the paragraphs under the heading “Jainism” is from BBC.  Lot of effort has been taken to leave this material in its original form and minimize the amount of material in proportion to what BBC has put on their site.   This is done in compliance with Section 110 (5) of the Copyright Act 1976.