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Mahavira Janma kalyanak, Last Tirthankara of this Avasarpini





Mahavir Jayanti celebrates the birth of Mahavira, a contemporary of Lord Budhha (Lived in 6 century BCE), and the final or 24th Tirthankara (great scholar and sages). Mahavira's name was Vardhamana and is considered to be the founder of Jainism but today I will try not to confine Mahavira's identity just to Jainism but to elaborate his contribution to the entire human race and mankind will be my pursuit.

Now I take you to the 6th century BCE, this century is very significant for Sanatan philosophy in many ways, this is when Budhha was born, and the 24th lineage of Tithankara "Mahavira" was born, this century commenced a subtle shift of Vedic ritualism and worship and stimulated the rises in merchant class population.

Let me heave a word "Avasarpini" to you, this means that world will become worse and worse in every year passing by. This is a cycle and during Avasarpini cycle, 24 Tirthankaras (Scholars and sages) are born in our earth, Mahavira was the final Tirthankara to appear. There are several similarities between Mahavira and Budhha however, Mahavira was born a little before Budhha. Both Hindu and Buddhist philosophy strongly focuses on the karma and karmic cycle but Jainism defines karma as something which pollutes the true nature of the soul. Mahavira like Buddha was born as a prince but abandons his life at the age of 30 and becomes an ascetic. In his pursuit of spiritual awakening and knowledge, he obtains 12 years of meditation and every hardships becomes negligible to him , it is said that people tortured him to the extent of piercing his ears, nails and even throwing stones at him. No one could distract Lord Mahavira from his meditation, finally, at the age of 42, he obtained omniscience and couldn't obtain moksha because of his remaining karmas of name and body. Finally, at the age of 72, Mahavira obtained Mokshya, such Mokshya which is the final frontier of this creation and grants the ever blissful and detached nature of the soul.

Jainism gave us the idea of non-violence that led to the largest number of vegetarians that have always existed in Indian subcontinent. The value of vegetarianism is only recently being recognized in the West and the rest of the globe, as we know. Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism are three unique manifests that the east has given to the globe, all three manifests weaves this universe in an Omni reality which is highly transcendental which lies behind the materialistic reality and phenomenon that we see in this world. These ultimate truth, knowledge, and ideologies would never be with us if sages like Mahavira would have not dedicated their lives to obtain these manifests. The Jain concept of nonviolence is urgently required in this earth to save it from ultimate ecological destruction.

These words and my naive efforts will be substantially incomplete to elaborate and describe Lord Mahavira and his contributions however, I will now try to elaborate precisely on the celebration of this day. Besides Mahavira Jayanti, this day is also called Mahavira Janma Kalyanak, Mahavira was born on the thirteenth day of the waxing moon period in Chaitra month. His birthplace falls somewhere in Bihar as there are many disputes on the tracing of the exact birthplace of Mahavira. There are millions of Jains in this world and everywhere they are this day they carry out the statues of Mahavira and deliver it a ceremonial anointment, this is called Avishekha. Prayers, Pujas, and vratas are observed. Lectures and prayers are held at Jain temples, donations are collected for noble causes like saving cows and feeding poor. The teachings of Mahavira is a gift and answers to the calls of people from any religion and community.

This world has undergone a significant time fraction under the pursuit of luxury, achievement and advancement, the wounded and lockdown world of today in the fear of infection, suppression and failure can learn a lot from Lord Mahavira and his practices. We put a thousand effort to buy happiness, let's just put one single effort to seek happiness that resides within us, let's remember Lord Mahavira. Happy Mahavira Janma Kalyanak

Suyog Dhakal



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