Jai Mahavir ji
The Religion ( Dharma)
(Extracts from the book ABC of Jainism written by Shanti Lal Jain)
Son: Ma, What is the religion?
Religions is a way of life. It teaches us to be a noble person.
Daughter: Ma, our religion is Jaina religion. So what is the meaning of Jaina?
Mother: The word “Jaina” is derived from the word Jina That mean victor.
One who conquers one’s desires is known as “Jina". The
followers of ‘Jina’ are known as ‘Jainas’ and the religion
preached by ‘Jainas’is the jaina . Arihantas as well as Sidhas
Daughter: Ma, Bhagwan Mahavir is the founder of Jainism. Is this true?
Mother: Jainism is
eternal like the universe. Jainism has no beginning and no
Daughter: Ma, What are the Jaina scriptures and who composed them?
Mother: We Jainas believe that Tirthankars are omniscient. They preach
the absolute truth about reality. Ganadharas then compose it.
Later, the Scriptural knowledge was passed on by word of mouth
from one generation of Acaryas (vkpk;Z ) to the next. Acaryas
compose Scriptures based on the existing principles of religion.
Son: What is the language in which our scriptures are written?
Mother: Our scriptures are in PRAKRTA, SANSKRTA and APABHRANSA.
Daughter: Ma, What are our main scriptural books?
Mother: We have number of spiritual books but some of the renowned
scriptures are SAMAYASARS, SATKHANDAGAMA and TATTVARTHA-SUTRA
etc. We consider Jinvani as our holy books.
Daughter: Which are our holy places?
Mother: There are several holy places where Jains perform their religious
activities Some of them are Sammed –Shikharji, Girnaraji, Campapurji,
Sri Mahavir Ji and Sravanabelsgola etc.
Daughter: Ma, please tell us what are the teachings of our Jaina religion.
Mother: The teachings of Jaina religion are Ahimsa, Satya, Acaurya ( not to steal ),
Brahamacarya and Aprigraha. I will explain about these teachings at some
other time. Now it is already late and I have to prepare diner before the
sun set. You can also help me.
Daughter: OK Mom.
Note:- All the words in italic are from PRAKRTA, SANSKRTA language.