19-20 APR 599 BCE VARDHAMAN MAHAVIR

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Mahavir Jayanti celebrates the birth of Lord Mahavir.



Significance of Mahavir Jayanti

 

 

Mahavir Jayanti is the most important Jain festival, which is celebrated in the most religious manner. This unique day is to venerate the birth of Lord Mahavir, who practiced Jainism and he is one of the most honorable saints to have ever existed on this planet. Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated with humility and simplicity, just like the religion itself. Lord Vardhamana Mahavira, was born a prince in a small town called Vaishali. Although he was destined to be an Emperor, he renounced the worldly life at the age of 30 and instead he led a life of penance to achieve realization. He was known for his fearlessness, intellectual wisdom, honesty and his teachings inspired many devout followers. Jain communities throughout the country honor and celebrate the birth of Saint Mahavir with great devotion. Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated on the thirteenth day of the month of ‘Chaitra’, according to the Hindu calendar. Read on to understand the significance of Mahavir Jayanti.

Significance of Mahavir Jayanti Celebrations
To understand the significance of Mahavir Jayanthi, one must learn about the greatness of Lord Mahavir. Lord Vardhamana Mahavira was the son of King Siddhartha and Queen Trisala. According to legend, Lord Mahavira was conceived by Devananda, the wife of Brahmin Rishabhdeva and by God’s miracle, the embryo transferred to the womb of Trisala. Trisala, the expectant mother saw 16 dreams before he was born, which was interpreted by astrologers who claimed that the child would either be an emperor or a ‘Teerthankara’. Indeed, the child became a great man, who abandoned all worldly pleasures and walked the path of an ascetic at the age of 30.

Lord Mahavir is considered as one of the finest and greatest prophets of social reformation and peace. He was propagator of Jainism and he followed the footsteps of his predecessor Teerthankara Parshvanatha. Lord Mahavir spread the message of salvation and non-violence and his thoughts influenced many followers. He developed a five-fold path for all householders to follow and these are ‘Ahimsa’, ‘Asteya’, ‘Brahmacharya’, ‘Satya’ and ‘Aparigraha’. Jains follow these vows to live in peace and harmony. Lord Mahavir expressed his teachings based on scientific explanations of nature and the true meaning of life. His teachings are still followed today not only Jain communities alone, but others as well.

Mahavir Jayanthi is only celebrated for one day and the masses organize peaceful processions where chariots, horses, elephants, chanters and drummers also form part of this procession. The many stories related to Saint Mahavir are narrated to children in honor of the great saint. Silent prayers and teachings of the great saint are reiterated through sermons, which are performed as part of the Mahavir Jayanthi celebrations. Money, food and clothing is donated to the poor, which is an important custom performed on this special occasion. In certain organizations, free food and drinks are provided to the public. The Girnar and Palitana in Gujarat, Sri Mahavirji in Rajasthan, Pawapuri in Bihar and Parasnath Temple in Kolkata are some of the important Jain shrines where main celebrations of Mahavir Jayanti are held.

Mahavir Jayanti is the day of Lord Mahavir’s birth and is considered as one of the most auspicious days in the country. The spiritual power and moral greatness of Lord Mahavir’s teachings, impressed many individuals during his time. He made Jainism, a religion so simple and free from various ritual complexities and inspired many to follow his path. His message and teachings regarding universal love will continue to live forever.

 

IN: HOME > INDIAN CULTURE / INDIAN FESTIVALS AND OCCASSIONS / MAHAVIR JAYANTI – BIRTHDAY OF LORD MAHAVIR

Mahavir Jayanti – Birthday of Lord Mahavir
INDIAN-CULTURE INDIAN FESTIVALS AND OCCASSIONS
Mahavir Jayanti falls on 5th April in 2012. Mahavir Jayanti is the biggest festival of Jains. Mahavir Jayanti marks the birth anniversary of Lord Mahavir. This festival is celebrated in India and throughout the world by the Jain communities. Read on to find more about the celebration and significance of Mahavir Jayanti.
Mahavir Jayanti is the biggest Jain festival and is celebrated in India and all over the world to commemorate the birthday of Lord Mahavir. It comes in the month of Chaitra, a month from Hindu calendar.
Significance of Mahavir Jayanti

It is a belief that Lord Mahavir was the son of Siddhartha and Trisala. According to the legend, Mahavir was conceived by a Brahmin Rishabhdeva’s wife and God transferred the embryo to the womb of Trisala. She had some typical dreams during the time of pregnancy and they are considered auspicious dreams.

However, the astrologers at that time interpreted the dreams and predicted that the child will become an emperor or the 24th Tirthankar, which Mahavir became ultimately. There is one more amazing story behind the birth of Mahavir. Trisala had a painless childbirth. Even as a child, Mahavir is said to be very fearless and that is why he got the name of ‘Mahavir’.
Celebration of Mahavir Jayanti

Read on to know how Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated.
Celebration in Gujarat and Rajasthan

Mahavir Jayanti has great significance in Gujarat and Rajasthan and is celebrated with great enthusiasm there. Mahavir Jayanti is also celebrated at Pawapuri in Bihar and Parasnath temple in Calcutta. In most places the festival lasts for one day. You can see the unity among the Jain people that day as they look like a huge and happy family.
Fasting on The Day of Mahavir Jayanti

Jain people keep the whole day fast and some of the devotees prefer a waterless fast instead. Many people visit sacred places and some even go on pilgrimage to celebrate that auspicious day. People pray for the health and wealth of themselves and their families. A procession is also taken on street at most places and lot of crowd following could be seen.
Significance of 24 Tirthankars

Jainism is one of the most major religions followed by people all over the world. They believe that 24 Tirthankars arrived in the world to convey the meaning of peace and forbearance to the people of this world. The preaching of these Tirthankars show the way to spiritual liberation and helps people come out of the darkness that is created around them due to the extreme attachment they have to the physical world. Mahavir was the last one among these Tirthankars and hence celebration of mahavir jayanti takes place every year.
Worshipping Lord Mahavir

In every part of the world where people of Jain community is present, Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated with great devotion and commitment. The Jain temples are decorated with flags and flowers and in the morning the idol of Lord Mahavir is given a ceremonial bath in every temple. After this the idol is placed on a cradle and then a procession is taken out. Many devotees take part and roam about with the grand procession and devotees offer milk, fruits, rice, lamps, incense and water.
Spreading the Preaching of Lord Mahavir

Many places people share the preaching of Lord Mahavir and let more and more people know about them. Jains are expected to give four types of donations that day – donation of knowledge, which means sharing what they know for the betterment of the people and community, protecting people from bad deeds and giving medicines, food and alms to poor. People read out excerpts from the life history of Lord Mahavir. Usually the day is celebrated with silent prayers and worship. There is no pomp and show and even the procession that is carried out is in silence. Many Jain religious leaders spend this day in solitude and meditating. On the whole, Mahavir Jayanti is observed with great somberness.

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Discussion Forum – Recent Posts
When does Mahavir Jayanti fall in the year 2011? How is Mahavir Jayanti celebrated by Jains? How to keep fast on the occasion of Mahavir Jayanti?
Shaila
Mahavir Jayanti is a very auspicious days for Jains. Actually, Mahavir Jayanti is observed twice. All of us go to Lord Mahvir’ s temple on this day. It feels very auspicious and belssed after visiting…

Hetal
I agree to Shaila. Mahavir Jayanti is a very auspicious day for all Jains. My entire family observe fast on this auspicious day of Mahavir Jayanti. It feels wonderful after having fast on the ocassion…

Asha
Mahavir Jayanti festival is very special for us. We visit our village to celebrate this festival with our family members and our relatives. The day of Mahavir Jayanti we all visit Lord Mahavir’ s temp…

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hi
it is a gratitude towards ur mentor and not teacher. there is a difference … – manva read >>
Guru Purnima
What is the importance of Guru Purnima? Why is Guru Purnima observed? How i … – Editor read >>
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What is Buddha Purnima? Why is Buddha Purnima celebrated? How is Buddha Pur … – Editor read >>
Buddha Purnima
Buddha purnima is the most important and holiest festival of buddhists. It … – Mahanti Jassi read >>

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