Jainism & Mental Health

By Dr. Vinubhai D. Shah
M.D. (Psychiatry)


I would like to compare famous freudian psycho-analytical theory and therapy with principles of Jainism.

I would like to prove that Lord Mahavir is not only a greatest spiritualist but also he is a far far superior psychologist, and a psychotherapist -this planet has ever seen!

Through principles and ethical codes of our Jainism, Jainism teaches us to control all negative emotions, such as Anger, Jealousy, Fear, Violence, Greed, Hatredness, Egoism etc. These negative emotions if persisted cause harmful effects such as mental illness and phychosomatic disorders.

While positive emotions are promoted and taught to be cultivated such as love for all, fellowship, sympathy, maitry, karuna, daya, for all Jivas.

All these positive emotions help to promote better mental health.

According to freudian psychology, conscious mind always wants pleasures of life, through sensual organs and also want instictual pleasures of life.

While philosophy of Jainism teaches us that you can get permanent pleasure, joy, peace, bliss and equanimity through self-realization.

Conflict Resolution : The teachings of Jain Philosophy and logical techniques for resolving conflicts through self control, non-violence and the Jain Doctrine of multiplicity of views -Anekantvad and the Jain theory of Karma lead to peace and harmony in the family and the society.

Summary : Jainism resolves conflicts and complexes of life and it also helps to control mind by Samata and to control negative emotions. It also helps to promote positive Mental Health and Self realisation.


Source : Jain Doctors' International Conference- 2004
Shree Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra- Koba
Gandhinagar, Gujarat


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