Lord Mahavir has said that, “Anger causes degradation of soul.” Even religious person, a spiritually raised soul can fall into the endless cycle of birth and death because of anger. Anger creates a slope that leads the soul to the lower life forms. In the Jain history there are many stories clearly stating bad results by anger. In this article I have mentioned two stories.
The first story is of Monk Khandhaksuri. He lived in the times of the 20th Jain Tirthankar Lord Munisuvrat. Khandhaksuri was the disciple of the Lord and there were 500 disciples under him. He was observing strict way of austerities and deep meditation. Before he renounced the world he was a prince and listener of Lord Munisuvrat. He was very much interested in the Jain Philosophy and he used to give lessons to those who were atheists. He had converted many peoples to the path of Lord Munisuvrat. There was a cruel person named Palak. He was king’s minister and was against Jainism. One day he was preaching against Jainism. By hearing about that, Khandhak went to Palak and stopped him to do so. Palak became so angry to him and decided to take revenge. After sometime, Khandhak became Lord Munisuvrat’s disciple and renounced the world.
One day, Monk Khandhaksuri asked for permission from Lord Munisuvrat to go to his sister’s abode along with his 500 disciples in order to convert her and her husband to Jainism. Lord Munisuvrat, in the power of his Omniscience could see that Khandhaksuri will face death in the way so he said him to stay. Monk Khandhaksuri asked the Lord, “Will I attain Liberation?” The Lord replied, “All your 500 disciples will attain Liberation except you.” Upon hearing this reply from the Omniscient Lord the monk thought, “For the beneficial of 500 souls I shall not look for my destiny.” So he started his journey toward the
The king’s minister Palak was informed about that and he decided to take revenge. He ordered the soldiers to hide the weapons in the ground. After that Palak went to the King and said him that Monk Khandhaksuri is an imposter who is sent here by the neighbor king. He has buried weapons in the land. The King said, “If this is fact then the monk will be punished.” On his way Monk Khandhaksuri was stopped by the soldiers and was blamed to be an imposter. The soldiers found weapons in the ground. The king became angry and ordered Palak to punish the monk. The monk realized that this web is created by Palak in order to take revenge. He decided to remain silent. Palak constructed a huge mixture to kill the Monk and all his 500 disciples. He ordered them all to jump in the mixture one by one. The Monk Khandhaksuri told his disciples not to be scared. He taught them that,
“Oh great souls, whenever you jump in the mixture don’t concentrate on the pain but contemplate that, I’m not this body but I’m a soul which is imperishable, eternal and beyond all other objects of the Universe.”
Every Monk, one by one followed his master’s instruction and just before they depart from the body they all attained Omniscience and attained Nirvana. This was continued until the 499 monks attained Nirvana. Now Monk Khandhaksuri and a teenager monk were left. Monk Khandhaksuri requested Palak that he will jump in the mixture first because that monk was very young, so he won’t be able to see his death. Palak didn’t accept his request and ordered the teenager monk to jump first. The monk jumped in the mixture and he too attained Omniscience and attained Liberation. Now before falling in the mixture, Monk Khandhaksuri became very angry at Palak and thought, “If my austerity has power then I want to kill this man (Palak) in every birth!” Thus he too jumped and died but because of anger he couldn’t attain Liberation and fell in the dark well of endless cycles of birth and death. He was the cause behind his all 500 disciples Liberation but he himself couldn’t gain it because of anger.
Now, the second story is about Chandkaushik Monk. He also was a well learned monk but there was absent of equanimity in his spiritual pursuit. He had a disciple who was a kid. One day they both went for alms. Unknowingly the head monk mashed a frog. The child monk told him for repentance for that mistake. The head monk’s pride stopped him to do so and he mentally thought, “How can this child monk dare to say me that!” Again at the time of night the child monk reminded him for repentance of killing the frog. Now the head monk loses his mental balance and decided to strike the child monk by the stick he was holding. So he ran after him to strike him but in the darkness he crashed with a pillar and died. In his next birth he became a mendicant. He possessed a huge farm and used to bring fruits from the farm and did austerities. He brought his previous birth’s angry nature in this birth too. Some boys used to steal fruits from his farm and he was always in rage for the boys. One day he decided to catch some boys and punish them so he lurked behind a tree and waited for them. He was holding an axe and as soon as he got chance he rushed toward those boys but unfortunately he fell down and his own axe pierced into his head and he died in agony. As a result in his third birth he became a snake who could kill anyone by looking at them by its ferocious glance! Thus we can see that his anger multiplied in every birth and pushed the soul deeper in the mundane world. Fortunately by the help of Lord Mahavir the snake learned to forgive and its anger vanished and it reincarnated in the 8th Celestial World.