Jainism Is A Non Theistic Religion Essay

1619 Words Nov 7th, 2016 7 Pages
Jainism

Religion exists all across the world in many different shapes and forms. All these religions are different in their own way. One of these religions is known as Jainism. Jainism, a non-theistic religion (Long, 2009), is, contrary to the belief of some, an independent world religion. Many believe and say Jainism was founded by Vardhamana Mahavira in about 500 B.C. But Mahavira was one of twenty-four Tirthankara’s, one’s who make liberation possible (Long, 2009). Mahavira’s predecessor, Parsvanatha, was the twenty-third Tirthankara who is believed to have taught a path of asceticism and self-restraint (Long, 2009). In other words, Mahavira was just a “re-discoverer” of Jainism. Followers of Jainism, also known as “Jains” (Eliade, 1907), typically come from India which is where Jainism originates. Vardhmana Mahavira was born in northern Bihar, India. He was “a prophet also known as the Jina, or ‘Victor’.” (Eliade, 1987, p, 507). Mahavira actually lived at the same time and in the same general area as the Buddha. He born in 599 BCE as the son of a king. So obviously he grew up living a lavish lifestyle of wealth and pleasantries. Yet, at the age of 30, he left his life in search of spiritual liberation. Once he was on his own, he lived an ascetic lifestyle. “He (Mahavira) is said to have given away all he possessed, pulled out all his hair in five handfuls, and vowed absolute holiness” (Frost, 1943, p. 120). He even gave up all his clothes to achieve liberation from…

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