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Lecture on Jainism-Jan 17

Course Code
Andre Maintenay

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January 17th
± ahimsa (non-violence) ± ³JHQWOHQHVVKDUPOHVVQHVV´± foundation of Jain ethics
- assumes the backdrop of the Indic worldview
- FRQWH[WRIWKHµVUDPDQD¶± movement of dissent ± establishment of Vedic tradition ±
characteristics ± existence of homeless wondering; leaving home to find answer; source
of foundation to the Indic tradition
o major features
seeking spiritual answers
extreme asceticism (related to body) ± exposing body to all kinds of
riggers and harsh environments in order to receive spiritual answers
Ascetic :
Western: the body is an impure thing that needs to be disciplined and
Indic: idea of strengthening the body and achieving control and mastery
over it ± if one can rid of the concerns of that body one is free to study
*ascetic NOT aesthetic
- setting of 24 teachers ± different points in history (TIRTHANKARA ± ³EULGJH-builde´r ±
connecting this world to moksa) /JINA ± ³FRQTXHURU´FRQTXHUHGWKHEDVHLQVWLQFWRIWKH
body) ± 23 already ± waiting on the 24th
- wave
- on the downside, teachers emerge to reduce the negativity
- hero in spirit/morals
- extraordinary compassion and love toward all beings
- founder of the Jain tradition historically
- no biography but a HAGIOGRAPHY
- exceptional individual (599 ± 527 BCE)
o Parents belonged to warrior class ± royalty class ± mother got pregnant ± he was
FRQFHUQHGZLWKKLVPRWKHVSDLQHYHQDVDIHWXV± coming from different sects of
Jainism; different versions
Mahavira ± grows up, gets married,
- never marries but wait until his parents have passed away roughly when
he was 30 ± takes vocation that he is really drawn to ± becomes a monk ±
wonder as an ascetic ± mark entry into the ascetic lifestyle ± pulls out hair
± wears ascetic clothing
age of 42 ± enlightenment ± wonders naked ± propagating the idea of
death at the age of 72
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