Definition - What does Parigraha-Parimana mean?

Parigraha-parimana is one the 12 vratas or vows of a layperson in Jainism. Specifically, it is a vow to limit attachment to worldly possessions. Unlike monks or ascetics who observe such vows more strictly, the layperson may make a vow to limit his or her attachment to certain possessions or a certain number of possessions, or they may vow to limit attachment for a specified period of time.

The term comes from Sanskrit with parigraha meaning “possession” and parimana meaning “quantity,” “duration” or “measuring.” This vrata is sometimes referred to as simply aparigraha, or non-possessiveness.

Yogapedia explains Parigraha-Parimana

Parigraha-parimana is a concept that Jainism shares with yoga. Aparigraha is one of the yamas (ethical codes), which comprise one of Patanjali’s eight limbs of yoga. It is the belief that the yogi should show self-restraint and take only what he needs.

Parigraha-parimana falls into a subgroup of the 12 vows called the five anu vratas, or "limited vows." The 12 vows also include the three guna vratas (strengthening vows) and the four shiksha vratas (spiritual vows). The other four anu vratas are:

  • Ahima - a vow taken with a promise to not harm any living thing or act with violence
  • Satya - a vow of truthfulness
  • Asteya or acaurya - a vow of no stealing
  • Brahmacarya - a vow of chastity
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