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Reviewed by:
  • Reconciling Yogas: Haribhadra's Collection of Views on Yoga
  • Fujinaga Sin
Reconciling Yogas: Haribhadra's Collection of Views on Yoga. By Christopher Key Chapple, with a new translation of Haribhadra's Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya by Christopher Key Chapple and John Thomas Casey. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2003. Pp. 170.

Among the Jaina philosophers, Haribhadra (700-770) must be one of the most studied by both Indian and non-Indian scholars, with examinations of his work going back to the early days of research on Indian thought in Europe. For example, Ṣaḍdar-śanasamuccaya, with introduction and notes by F. L. Pullé, was published in Florence in 1887. Traditionally, over one thousand books are attributed to Haribhadra. Besides commentaries on the āgamas, his writings also cover almost all other aspects of Jaina philosophy. The Yogadḍḍḍisamuccaya (hereafter YDS), as the title suggests, discusses aspects of yoga in Jainism with reference to other schools of Indian philosophy. The book under review here, Reconciling Yogas: Haribhadra's Collection of Views on Yoga, by Christopher Key Chapple, consists of seven chapters of essays on the YDS and its author, a new English translation with Sanskrit text, and notes, a bibliography, and an index.

In the first chapter, which deals with the writings of Haribhadra, especially the YDS, the author reviews opinions on his dates and agrees with the view that he lived [End Page 681] in the eighth century. Chapter 2 discusses the relationship between Haribhadra and Patañjali as well as their thoughts concerning yoga. This chapter is probably the most important one in the book. Two "lost yogas," the Vedāntin Yoga of Bhagavaddasa and the Buddhist Yoga of Bhāskara, are explored in chapter 3. These are identified, as the chapter title indicates, as Vedānta yoga and Buddhist yoga.

In chapter 4, on the philosophical background of the various yogas, the author points out that although Haribhadra was familiar with the thought of other schools, he proclaimed the Jaina tenet of realism and criticized Buddhist momentariness and Vedāntin monism. These criticisms may be related to the two yogas dealt with in the previous chapter. Chapter 5 discusses the notion of purity in Patañjali and Haribhadra, and chapter 6 deals with Haribhadra's criticisms of tantric yoga. In the last chapter Christopher Chapple examines Haribhadra's thoughts on yoga from a sociological standpoint; Chapple also assigns contemporary yoga movements to four groups in accordance with the types of yogins mentioned in the YDS.

The author points out that in the Jaina tradition the word "yoga" fundamentally stands for any actions by living beings and the behavior required of pious Jainas (p. 28). In the YDS, however, Haribhadra uses this word to denote activities involved in reaching higher stages of spiritual awareness. This unique usage of the word shows Haribhadra's attitude toward "reconciling [the] Yoga" of Jainism and that of other schools, especially that of Patanñjali.

Among the contributions made by this book to Jaina studies and Indology are (1) a clear explanation of the relationship between guḍasthāna in Jainism and Patañjali's Yoga system and (2) an attempt to recover the lost yogas, that is, the Buddhist yoga and Vedāntist yoga mentioned in the YDS. These two topics will be examined in more detail below.

Guḍasthāna and Yoga

Patañjali's yoga system in essence is regarded as a course of spiritual purification. The Jainas also have a similar system, known as guḍasthāna, which consists of fourteen stages of spiritual development. This idea of guḍasthāna does not appear in the earlier canons, so it must be a comparatively new development in the history of Jainism. By the time of Haribhadra, guḍasthāna must have been popular among the Jainas as he explicitly uses the term in the YDS and tries to allot stages to each of eight limbs or aḍgas in Patañjali's system. Christopher Chapple explains their relationship and illustrates this with tables. A similar approach was attempted by K. K. Dixit in the introduction to his Yogadṛṣṭisamuccaya and Yogaviṃśikā (Ahmedabad, 1970). Chapple, however, has done this...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1529-1898
Print ISSN
0031-8221
Pages
pp. 681-684
Launched on MUSE
2006-10-11
Open Access
No
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