August 14, 2013

Wisdom from a teenager : Perspectives & Anekantvada

This is a (long awaited) guest post written by Kruti (
She presents a different perspective or rather, maybe an analogy between science & religion wrt my last post, What if our understanding of the universe is like the three blind men & an elephant.

Kruti writes
I came across a slightly different version of The Blind Men and the Elephant while reading something about Jainism. Anekantavada, or multiplicity of perspectives. 

Each of the blind men was right and wrong at the same time. He was right from his point of view- well, the leg of the elephant was like a pillar, wasn't it? But the elephant, in all, was not, so he was wrong from the perspective of somebody who had seen the elephant in its entirety. The same applies to people, to peoples' decisions...

Similarly, one of Jainism's key principles is the multiplicity of viewpoints. No human can independently proclaim that s/he knows the absolute truth; everything is relative. Be it good or bad, ugly or beautiful, it is the perspective that matters. Today, something that seems correct to me might seem terribly wrong to you tomorrow. Who judges what the truth is? We don't know, we perhaps never will. Maybe the next time we think someone is doing something unlikable, we could put ourselves in their shoes and try to reason it out.

PS: This is a little off-track from Sambhav bhaiyya's post, but the thought just came to my mind! Yet another example of varied perspectives, eh?

Thank you Kruti

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