Mahavira (Vardhamana Mahavira) | 24th Tirthankara of Jainism

Mahavira

Mahavira

Mahavira, also known as Vardhamana, was the twenty fourth Tirthankara. He was a great Jain monk who had left all the worldly pleasures, and acts as an example for others to follow his footsteps and principles, and he was greatly worshipped by the Jain people. It is believed that while he was born, he was also blessed by the divine gods in the heaven, including Lord Indra.

LIFE

He was born on 599 BC in the present day Bihar in a royal family. His father’s name was Siddhartha and his mother’s name was Trishala. He left home at the age of 30 in search for spiritual enlightenment, and for becoming a saint. Mahavira had performed severe penance for 12 years, and after that he attained the spiritual enlightenment in his life. It is believed by the Jain people, that he had attained moksha after his departure from the earth.

His main teachings for attaining spiritual liberation are:

  • Truth
  • Chastity
  • Non violence
  • Non stealing
  • Non attachment to worldly objects

Mahavira is usually depicted in a sitting posture, and his birthday is celebrated as Mahavir Jayanthi by the Jain people in a grand manner, and they will give offerings to the poor and do lot of charity work on that day, in order to celebrate the birthday of their great Saint, and the saviour to the entire world.

Mahavir Jayanthi will usually be celebrated in the month of March or April of every year.

Mahavira was considered as the last Tirthankara. According to the Svetambara, he travelled throughout India to teach the jain philosophy amongst the people, and was widely praised by the people through his teachings and through his kind and simple approach. He was worshipped by the kings in all parts of India, and was properly honoured and praised by them. He was attracted by large number of people to listen to his teachings and to get blessings from him. It is believed that, people got peace of mind and relieved from their mental and physical problems by seeing his shining face itself. He was such a charm and attractive looking person, who never cause any harm to others, and always aimed at doing good things to others in his entire life.

FAMOUS DISCIPLES OF MAHAVIRA

  • Agnibhuti
  • Vayubhuti
  • Akampita
  • AryaVyakta
  • Sudharman
  • Manditaputra
  • Mauryaputra
  • Acalabhraataa
  • Metraya

He attained Nirvana at the age of 72 in Bihar. He is worshipped by the Jain people as a great religious leader, guru and god.

TEMPLES

  • Jal Mandir in Pawapuri
  • Shri Mahavirji in  Rajasthan
  • Mahavira Jain temple in Osian
  • Trilokyanatha Temple in Kancheepuram
  • Brahma Jinalaya in Lakkundi
  • Sankighatta, Karnataka
  • Muchhal Mahavir Templein Rajasthan
  • Bhandavapur Jain Tirth
  • Dimapur Jain Temple

IMPORTANCE

He was a great avatar Purusha (Great Divine Incarnation of God) who took birth in this earth in order to relieve us from the sins, and to move to the correct path. During his period, through his teachings, he made the people to live a happy and a noble life. He taught many good principles which are still helpful to the man kind.He has controlled his senses and has become a great spiritual master. In the present life scenario, we can’t imagine such a great person like him.

He had donated all the things which he possessed to others, including his cloth. We should also cultivate the habit of worshipping him by keeping utmost faith on him.Let us try to follow his principles and teachings and lead a happy, prosperous and a sin free life.

Let us chant his name and be blessed.

“OM SREE BHAGAVAN MAHAVIRAYA NAMAHA”

WRITTEN BY

R.HARISHANKAR

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