Jai Mahavir ji
Digambar Jain Religious and spiritual path & Practices
An exclusive web site dedicated to Jainism.
One source for information related to universal message of Jainism and Jain philosophy.
The questions and their answers are in accordance to Jain philosophy.
Q1. What is Jain dharma?
Answer: - The Dharma or the religion has been defined in various ways in each religion. In accordance to Jainism "Vatthu Sahavo Dhammo" Dharma is nothing but the real nature of an object. Just as the nature of water that turns into steam when it comes in contact with fire but again it turns out to water upon cooling which is the real nature of the substance. The real nature of the soul is to be Pure soul but when it come in contact with karma’s it become impure and passes through worldly sufferings. Again when separated from karma it become pure soul which is the essential nature of the soul. The followers of right faith, right gyan and right conduct seek self-realization and spiritual elevation which is proven path by lord vitraag Jinendra Dev is called the Jain religion.
Q.2. Who is Jains?
Answer:-The word "Jain" is derived from the Sanskrit word Jina (meaning victor). A human being who has conquered all inner passions like attachment, desire, anger, pride, greed, etc. and therefore, possesses pure infinite knowledge (Kevala Jnana) is called Jina. Followers of the path practiced and preached by Jinas are known as Jains.
Q.3: -Who created this universe?
Answer: - As per Jain’s believe no one created this universe it existed since beginning and will continue to exist.
Q.4:- Who was the founder of Jainism?
Answer: -There is no founder of Jainism. Jains believe that our universe has always been and will always continue to be here, so there can be no founder. However, the level of devotion towards religious practices varies. Therefore, every few million years (the equivalent of one Jain time cycle (Kalchakra) a group of 24 Tirthankaras re-establishes order and preach about ahimsa (non-violence) and other Jain tenets. The first Tirthankara among these 24 tirthankara is Lord Rishabh Dev also known as Adinath ji and the last one is
Lord Mahavira, the 24th Tirthankara in the present series, who was born in 599 BC (about 2607 years before) in Kundalpur, Bihar, India.
Q.5: -What are the basic principles of Jain religion?
Answer: - some basic principles of Jainism are Anekantavada (the doctrine of manifold aspects) sydwada, Ahimsa (non-violence), Akinchanya (non-attachment) Non-possessiveness, six dravya, seven tattava and nine substances.
There are other specialties of Jainism.
I. The GOD is not the creator or destroyer: -The Jainism rejects the idea of a creator or destroyer God and postulates that the universe is eternal. Jainism believes every soul has the potential for salvation and to become God. The souls who have attained liberations resides in Sidhdha lok the most upper part of this universe known by the names as God and called Arihantas, sidhdha’s.
II. Karma Theory: - Karma theory of Jain principles is very important. The worldly souls are suffering because of the association of soul with the karmic substance enabling the soul to attain the liberation and to stop the cycle of birth and death. In every cycle of birth due to attachments or aversion the karmic substances continues to accumulate and the life cycle goes on. The relationship between the soul and karma is explained by the analogy of gold. Gold is always found mixed with impurities in its natural state. Similarly, the ideal, pure state of the soul is always mixed with the impurities of karma. The soul is able to shed all its karmic impurities and upon shedding the karmic impurities it become just pure soul having its qualities of infinite knowledge, infinite perception, and infinite bliss and attains the liberation.
III. Re incarnation: - As cited above soul can’t become free till the karmic bondage of karma exists. This makes the soul to wonder in worldly life cycle of birth and death. In Jainism it is believed that the soul take rebirth in a new life and body after the death. Soul will not be able to attain moksha unless it turns to be pure soul and reincarnation will continue.
IV. Moksha Marg: - Jain religion teaches as how to get rid of the birth cycle. In tatvarth scripture in its first stanza has written “सम्यक दर्शन-ज्ञान-चारित्रनी मोक्ष मार्ग: I It means right faith (samyak-darshana), right knowledge (samyak-jnana), and right conduct constitutes the path of liberation/salvation which has been termed as Moksha. In Jain’s Philosophy this is the only way out for getting liberation.
Ahimsa (non-violence): -
VI. KAL Chakra: -Jains believe that time is infinite, without any beginning or end. Time is divided into infinite equal time cycles (Kalchakras). Every time cycle is further sub-divided in two equal halve. The first half is the progressive cycle or ascending order, called Utsarpini. The other half is the regressive cycle or the descending order, called Avasarpini. Every time in Avasarpini 24 Tirthankars take birth in each time cycle and establish the Jainism.
Thus the Jain religion is different from other religions. In Jain religion’s Tradition it is only the vitraagi Dev and vitraagita is worshiped which is being followed from the infinite period and will continue till endless period.
6: - Do jain’s believe in God?
Answer: - Jainism is a non-theistic religion. This means that the
presence or lack thereof a supreme God is not vitally important in the
context of Jain tenets. All Jains agree that because of the nature of
karma (you are the controller of your own actions and thus the
consequences), praying to a God would not yield any benefits or grant
any wishes. Additionally, since Jains believe that the universe had no
beginning (has existed eternally) there is no conception of a creator
God in Jain philosophy as explained above in para 5.I and 5.II.
7: -What are the Holy scriptures of Jain’s?
Answer: -Tirthankars after attaining the keval jnana he delivers the discourse through divya dhvani which is grasped by Gandhara’s and written by acharya’s are called Jinvani /aagam. Jinvani is devided into 12 anga and 14 poorvas. These have been broadly into four sections called four Anuyogas.
1. Pratham‑anuyoga (Dharma‑kath‑anuyoga) - Religious Stories-प्रथमानुयोग
2. Karan‑anuyoga (Ganit‑anuyog) – Mathematics..... करुणानुयोग
3. Charn‑anuyoga- Conduct................ चरणानुयोग
4. Dravy‑anuyog – Philosophy......द्रव्यानुयोग
8: -What are the names of the Holy Scriptures of Jain’s under Pratham‑anuyoga- प्रथमानुयोग?
Answer: - This anuyoga consists of the following texts, which contain religious stories, art, literature, history, poetry, and like literature mainly about 63 shalaka mahapurush( Like 24 Tirthankara’s 12 chakravorties,9 narayan, 9 pratinarayan, 9 Balbhara )
Padma puran ( jain Ramayan), Harivamsa puran (Jain Mahabharat) , chowbees puran,
Adi puran , Uttar puran, wardhmaan puran, pradhuman charitra and shrenik charitra etc.
9: -What are the names of the Holy Scriptures of Jain’s under Karan‑anuyoga (Ganit‑anuyog) –
This anuyoga expounded the texts, which had mathematical viewpoints. It consists of the following texts, which contain Lok, Alok, geography, mathematics, astronomy, astrology, and like literature.
Surya prajnapti, Chandra prajnapti , Jaya dhaval tika, Gommat sar, shatkhandagam etc.
10: -What are the names of the Holy Scriptures of Jain’s under Charn‑anuyoga- Conduct.....चरणानुयोग
This anuyoga consists of the following texts, which contain principles
of observances by Acharya’s, muni,s and shravak ( house holders),
conduct, behavior, and like literature.
Ratna karanda shravak achar by Samantabhadra
11: -What are the names of the Holy Scriptures of Jain’s under Dravy‑anuyog – Philosophy......द्रव्यानुयोग
This anuyoga consists of the following texts, which contain
philosophical doctrine, theories, metaphysics, Tattvajnan, and like
Niyamasar, Panchastikaya, Pravachanasar, Samaya sara, Tattvartha sutra,
12:- what is the procedure to study any Holy Scriptures?
Answer: - Place the scripture on the low lever table with great regards by doing namaskaar. First of all recite the mangla charan given in the scripture itself in the beginning daily whenever it is to be read and read the stanzas. Try to grasp the meanings before proceeding to the next stanzas. Don’t fold the corners ogf the pages of the shashtra instead use the thread which is attached as a page marker after finishing the day’s reading close the shashtra and recite the following stanza: -
“जा वाणी के ज्ञानतें, सूझे लोकालोक I
सो वाणी मस्तक चठो सदा देत हूँ धोक II
Cover the scripture with the cloth cover and place the scripture properly in the safe cupboard.
Q.12: what is the population of Jain’s in India?
Answer: - The Jain population in India according to 2001 census is 4,225,053 out of the total population of India 1,028,610,328. Most of the Jains do not write their name as Jain although they follow the Jain religion. Thus no reliable data is available even after the census held during 2011 and the population of India has crossed over 12.50 million.
Q.13: - what is the literacy rate in Jains?
literacy rate of Jainism is highest as compared to other religions in
India with 94.1%
Q.14: - Now Government of India has declared Jain’s as minor community. What are the advantages the Jain community will now have?
Answer: -Now Jains will qualify for constitutional safe guards and special policy attention.
v Manage their own educational institutions without any interference.
v Eligible funds under the Governments minority programs.
v 15% of all Govt funds under the various programs must be targeted towards minorities
There are number of other benefits under this category like scholarships to poor students and many more. For details one can refer to the gazette notification by the Government of India and various states Government’s orders.
Q.15: - What are the fundamental attributes-virtues should be followed by the Jain house holders (shravak-श्रावक) in their day to day life.
Answer:- Among the number of qualities there are few special qualities which comes under the category called Virtues. These are explained and classified in different ways by different Acharya’s.
In first case the following 8 virtues have been said:-
Prohibition to use Alcoholism or intoxication, consumption of flesh(chicken/meat etc.) , Use of Honey and five type of fruits called Udambar namely fruits from Banyan, Peepal , goolar(fig) and Kathal (jack fruits) because by using these things there is violence of innumerable insects called trasa jeevas having more than one inderyan/senses. The restriction to not to use these eight items are treated as basic 8 virtues-moolgunas.
Similarly in the second perspective by some Jain Achary’s the followings have been considered as 8 moolgunas-8 virtue as follows:-
Prohibition to use Alcoholism or intoxication, consumption of flesh (chicken/meat etc.), Use of Honey and to follow 5 anuvartas as explained below:-
Apart from the above there are some more attributes for Jain house holders like
v Daily going to Jain temple for Dav darshan.
v Not to eat after sun set,
v Use of the filtered water,
v And jeev Daya.
These attribute are practiced by the house holders mainly to avoid any kind of violence and to build a strong moral character within the society.
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