Ganesh Prasad Varni

Published: 27.04.2014
Ganeshprasad, Kshullak Ganeshprasad Varni


Born: 01.01.1874, Hansera, Lalitpur, U.P.
Passed away: 05.12.1961


Hindi:     पूज्य 105 श्री गणेश प्रसाद वर्णी
Gujarati: શ્રી ૧૦૫ ક્ષુલ્લક ગણેશપ્રસાદ વર્ણી
Kannada:ಶ್ರೀ ೧೦೫ ಕ್ಷುಲ್ಲಕ ಗಣೆಶಪ್ರಸಾದ ವರ್ಣೀ

Kshullak Ganeshprasad Varni was one of the foundational figures of the modern Indian Digambar intellectual tradition during early 20th century. He was the founder of several schools and institutions of advanced learning including Syadwad Mahavidyalaya at Varanasi in 1905, Varanasi and Satark-Sudhataringini Digamber Jain Pathshala, now Ganesh Digamber Jain Sanskrit Vidyalaya at Sagar.

Many of the Jain scholars today are products of the institutions found by Ganeshprasad Varni. Sahajananda Varni was one of his disciple. While Jinendra Varni never heard him speaking, he was deeply influenced by him and had compiled a volume "Varni Darshan" to commemorate Ganeshprasad Varni's birth centenary in 1975.

He led a simple and aesthetic life and dedicated himself to the study and teaching of Jain philosophy. He gradually adopted a life of renunciation. At Kundalpur, he took the brahmacharya vrata (celibacy), i.e. 7th pratima from Baba Gokuldas and thus came to be called a Varni. He took 10th pratima in 1944, and became a kshullak in 1947. He travelled extensively in India. He had donated his only wearing apparel, the Chadar, at a public meeting held in connection with Azad Hind Army at Jabalpur in 1945. It was immediately auctioned for Rs. 3000/- for raising the funds for the army.

At the age of 87, sensing his impending end, he retired to Isri Udasin Ashram, near Sammet Shikhar which he had himself helped establish. He took the vows of a Jain Muni with the name Muni 108 Ganeshkirti.

He died in his final meditation (Samadhi-maran) on 5 December 1961.

Literary works:    
  • Meri Jivan Gatha (1945)
    2-volume autobiography, a major source of information about the Jain society of his time.


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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Brahmacharya
  2. Celibacy
  3. Darshan
  4. Digambar
  5. Digamber
  6. Jabalpur
  7. Jain Philosophy
  8. Jinendra
  9. Jinendra Varni
  10. Kshullak
  11. Kundalpur
  12. Lalitpur
  13. Meditation
  14. Muni
  15. Pathshala
  16. Pratima
  17. Sagar
  18. Sammet Shikhar
  19. Sanskrit
  20. Varanasi
  21. Vidyalaya
  22. Vrata
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