Jainism Essay

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Jainism, also known as Jain Dharma, is a religion that many people in the world don't know about but is practiced by about 9 million people worldwide. With the roots of the religion coming from pre-historic India, Jainism is a dharmic religion. There is not an exact definition for the word dharma, it has several different meanings. It is used in most of the philosophies or religions originating in India, like Hinduism and Buddhism. Jainism is a very strict and intricate religion and its followers are big believers in peace and non violence. Jains believed that the first person to receive the philosophy of Jainism was a person by the name of Lord Rishabha. Lord Rishabha was the first Tirthankar of the Jain religion …show more content…

Digambars believe that a person should give up all their possessions including clothes. They wear no clothes and carry only a peacock feather to brush away insects from their walking path so they do not harm them. (Wilkinson, 47). A few other characteristics of Digambaras are they beg and eat food only once a day, maintain a vow of nudity, women cannot attain salvation in this life, but rebirth can change their status in the next life through the karmic effects of austere living, and believe genuine canon of works lost, and follow varied writings. (Facts on File, 4.14). Svetembars are opposite to Digambars, they are given three pieces of cloth to wear, a begging bowl, and a wool whisk. They beg for their food and travel the countryside eight months of the year. Women can become Svetembara nuns. (Wilkinson,47). A few characteristics of Svetembaras are they wear plain white robes, nudity is optional, novice monks or nuns receives a whisk of yarn to remove insects from his/her way, decorate images with clothing of ornaments, and some wear a cloth over their mouth to prevent insects being swallowed. (Facts on File, 4.14) Jains have several different beliefs that they follow, most having to do with peace and non violence. The beliefs they follow are called ahimsa, asceticism, karma, samsara, and the jiva. By definition ahimsa is a religious concept which advocates non violence

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