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MAHAVEER

He Shows the Way

After he became a ThirthankaraMahaveera taught the way of Dharma. He organized a group of disciples. The principal tenets of Mahaveera are the five Vrathas. They are on a small scale for householders. They are therefore called Anuvrathas. For sanyasins they are on a large scale; they are Mahavrathas. The five vrathas he taught are Ahimsa, Astheya, Asathya Thyaga, Aparigraha and Brahmacharya. Ahimsa means non-violence. No pain should be inflicted on any living being. Even the thought of causing pain should be avoided. We should love birds and beasts.

Asathya Tyaga means not telling lies. It means giving up anger and hate.

Astheya means not stealing. It means not desiring another's property.

Aparigraha means keeping only as much as is necessary; this applies to clothes, property, jewels, money, everything. Any thing in excess of one's needs should be given away to others.

Brahmacharya does not mean only remaining unmarried. Even the married must keep their love of pleasure under check. Husband and wife must treat all others as their parents.

Mahaveera organized society into four groups: the Sanyasi, the Sanyasini, the Grihastha (the married man), the Grihini (the married woman). This is called Chathurvarna Sangha. Mahaveera showed the path of salvation to all human beings. He stated that Samyagdarshana, Samyagjnana and Samyagcharithra would lead to salvation. Samyagdarshana means the mind being attracted by the teachings of the Thirthankaras. Samyagjnana means loving study and understanding of those teachings. Samyagcharithra means observation of the precepts without dilution.

Mahaveera loved all living creatures. He regarded all humanity as one. He criticized caste, religion, sect and sub-sects. No one is different because of his birth. Differences arise from actions.

Mahaveera first practised and then preached his teachings. He was the guest of a potter by name Saddala.He converted him. There was a man by name Harikeshi, who was supposed to belong to a very low caste; Mahaveera appointed him to a post of authority in the Society of Jain Monks. He showed that all languages were equal.
'Saraswathi, the Goddess of Learning, is the embodiment of all languages', he declared. He selects the language of the people to explain his teachings. Mahaveera's teaching was a 'Sarvodaya Thirtha', a sacred place where all were made nobler.

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Mahaveer- A young prince, who gave up everything to follow the path of Jainism
About Mahaveer
Introduction
The Brave Prince
Chetaka Of Lichchavi
Jaina Dharma
Vardhamana's Birth
What Can The Elephant Do?
'Marry'
The Recluse
Severe Tapas
His Food
A Thirthankara
hand.gif (968 bytes) He Shows The Way
His Influence Spreads
Himself Like The Himalayas
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