The Jains (The Library of Religious Beliefs and Practices)
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The Indian religion of Jainism, whose central tenet involves non-violence to all creatures, is one of the world's oldest and least-understood faiths. Dundas looks at Jainism in its social and doctrinal context, explaining its history, sects, scriptures and ritual, and describing how the Jains have, over 2500 years, defined themselves as a unique religious community. This revised and expanded edition takes account of new research into Jainism.
eventually attain spiritual deliverance (PadP 123). The Jains and the Buddhists There is no record of Mahāvīra and the Buddha ever having encountered each other, although they were near exact contemporaries and lived and taught in the Ganges region. The Buddhist texts of the Pāli canon were familiar with Mahāvīra, whom they called Nigaṇṭha Nātaputta, and his claim to omniscience, and one of them (Dīgha Nikāya: Saṅgītiparyāya Sutta) describes how his death and the squabbling which ensued
contemporary development in this respect is the attempt to interpret Jainism on the basis of its traditional teachings of non-violence and vegetarianism in modern environmentalist terms as an eco-religion. This approach has been embodied in ‘The Jain Declaration on Nature’ of 1992 by L. M. Singhvi where Jainism is described as a timeless ecological philosophy teaching respect for all forms of life.88 Environmentalism as a world-view is of course very much a component of modern western, or
Sculptures and Architecture, Kapadwanj. Kapadia, H. R. (1941) A History of the Canonical Literature of the Jainas, Surat. Kansara, N. M. (1976) The Bhagavadgītā Citations in Yaśovijaya’s Adhyātmasāra, a Manual on Jaina Mysticism, Annals of the Bhandarkar Oriental Institute 57: 23–39. Kapur, Rajiv A. (1986) Sikh Separatism: The Politics of Faith, London. Kasliwal, K. C. (1967) Jaina Grantha Bhandars in Rajasthan, Jaipur. Kelting, M. W. (1999) Jain Women’s Manḍals and the Authority to Recreate
Ṛṣabha, but although he had the magic power to scale the mountain effortlessly and was also the first person to have been converted by Mahāvīra, his efforts were to no avail. Mahāvīra told the disappointed Gautama on his return that it was his affection for his teacher that was holding him back, for any sort of emotion is a hindrance to the attainment of enlightenment. After the death of Mahāvīra, Gautama was distraught with grief both because of separation from his master and his continuing
from it on occasion and, in the nineteenth century, Bühler describes how learned Digambaras whom he had encountered accepted the authority of some Śvetāmbara texts, while rejecting others.70 Although the Digambaras do not have a formal canon of their own, they have nonetheless evolved a quasi-canonical grouping of texts into four literary categories called ‘exposition’ (anuyoga), a term associated with the legendary teacher Rakṣita who supposedly divided up the scriptures for fear that they would