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Integrating national spirit with religious ceremony


Er.Rajesh Pathak

Last Teerthankar, Lord Mahavir Swamy, underwent 12 years long austerity , deeply engrossed  chanting the mantra , ‘ Oum Sidhaivaya Namah:', knowing not when body had left with no piece of cloth to cover with !   Then in Jrumbhak village of present Bihar state on 23rd April , 557 BC he attained ‘Kewalyagyan' , sheer transformed into being detached, all-knowing  and all-visionary. And then he founded ‘Chaturvida Sangh' with fourfold body of Sadhus and Sadhvies  given to the hard practices of subduing senses; and common mass to be called Shravaks and Shravikas .

In the sacred reminiscent of birth of Chaturvida Sangh every year is celebrated ‘Jinshasan-sthapana diwas' .  And so it is  celebrated this year by the followers of Shawetambar sect of Jainism  in Ashta township lying near Indore-Bhopal highway last days . However, the way it all was done has made it ever-memorable; and inspiring ever more ,particularly, for the rest of all the sects-religions found in the country. As the normal practice  that after the  community flag being unfurled, the anthem in higher respect of  flag was sung, then followed the prayer . Yet not all ended as ceremony ! After this came forward the president of community named Pawan Surana. He presided over the oath taking ceremony by all those present to remain loyal to Jinshasan ( the rule set by Mahavir Swamy) and more notably to the Bharatvarsha !  This is such an instance of  integrating spirit into religious rites which should be found common among all the religions. And that normally comes not into sight around.

And if it is followed in Jainism than  credit must go to the progressive elements  incorporated by Mahavir Swamy into the very formation of community practices .  By  awarding equal place to sadhvies and shravikas into Chaturvida Sangh as their male counterparts he showed that before him there lies no discrimination of high-low based on male-female. Likewise, where ever he would go he preached his teachings in the local dialect  of ‘Prakrut' developed from Sanskrut-Pali spoken by all.  He had 11 Ganadhara; and Mahasati Lady Chandana , as the Pradhan  of sadhvi-sangh. Then it was King Shrenik , the Pradhan shrouta of Mahavira ; while  Maharani Chelna as the Pradhan of shravika-sangh.

For 30 years Mahavira went to preach   in different places of Bihar, as  innumerable people became the followers of  Ahimsa based Jain  dharma . By birth Mahavira was Kshatriya ; and his chief Ganadhara , Goutam, was Brahmin.  In his religious meetings all were welcomed irrespective of caste consideration. As much as even it is said that two-legged, four-legged animals-birds used to assemble in his discourses.  Of course it could be said that it is in inclusivity of life that Mahavir Swamy  traced the humanity .




The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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