Glory of Jainism: Shri Siddhasen Diwakarsuri

Published: 06.08.2012

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Shri Siddhasen Diwakarsuri

Highly learned scholar Siddhasen of the court of king Vikramaditya of Ujjayini was proud and arrogant about his being undefeated in scriptural discussion and debate everywhere with many a versatile scholar. Siddhasen used to say that he would become a lifelong disciple of any person who would defeat him in such a debate. Meanwhile, he happened to hear about a reputed logician Vruddhavadisuriji. He challenged the logician to a debate. In this debate against Vruddhavadisuriji, Siddhasen was defeated and as per the condition he accepted initiation from Vruddhavadiji and was named Muni Kumudchandra.

In course of time, he was designated as acharya (head of a mendicant group) and based on his original name he was renamed Siddhasensuri. He possessed the miraculous power of producing gold as also of raising an army of soldiers by means of spells; so he provided assistance to king Devpal of Karmar village and thereby frustrated king Vijayvarma's agression. This won him immense praise both from the people and the king and he was called Diwakar - one that brings light in to darkness. The king never allowed him to go on foot and he always insisted that he should ride an elephant or use the palanquin.

His spiritual teacher (Guru) Acharya Vruddhavadisuriji came to know about this and thought that if other monks would follow the example of Siddhasen Diwakar, it would minimise the significance of restraint and renunciation. Moreover if monks would become acquisitive, it would lead to many evils. So with a view to making his disciple realize the truth, Vruddhavadisuriji came to Karmar village despite his old age. He saw that Siddhasensuri used to mount the palanquin and crowds of people followed him applauding his achievements and making a stampede to win his favour.

Aged Vruddhavadisuriji also supported this palanquin but because of his old age, he lost his balance. Whereupon Diwakarsuri uttered a sentence in Sanskrit. The Guru, who was lifting the palanquin, pointed to a verbal fallacy in the sentence. Hearing that there was somebody amongst the palanquin-raisers who could find fault with the language of a scholar like him, Diwakarsuri came down from the palanquin and found that it was Gurudev himself! He felt terrible remorse and he asked for Guru's apology.

Once Diwakarsuri found some scholars ridiculing the sutras (the canonical scriptures) of Jain religion written in Prakrit language so he made up his mind to translate them in Sanskrit. He asked his Guru's permission for this but the Guru advised him not to find faults with the language of the Tirthankars (builders of the ford) namely, the Prakrit language because that would amount to disrespect to the Tirthankars. Siddhasensuri realised his mistake and in order to repent, he practised penance for 12 years in a secluded place.

After a lapse of 12 years, a strange thing happened. The royal servants were whipping a yogi sleeping in the Shiva temple but it so happened that the whipping-marks were seen on the bodies of the queens in the palace. Greatly surprised by this miracle, king Vikramaditya came down to the Shiva temple and on his arrival the yogi stood up and composed the Kalyan Mandir Stotra whose influence was so powerful that an idol of Avanti Parshwanath manifested itself from right under the Shivalinga. King Vikramaditya recognised Siddhasen Diwakar. Besides Batris-Batrisi his lasting fame depends on his other books like Nyayavtar, Sanmatitark, etc. His Nyayavtar laid the foundation of Nyayshastra (science of logic). His books reveal exhaustive analysis of Nayvad (theory of partial truth) for the first time.

Sources
Title: Glory Of Jainism
Artist:

Ashok Saha and Prathana Saha

Publisher:

Shri Anilbhai Gandhi (Trustee),
Shri-108-Jain-Tirth-Darshan-Bhavan-Trust,
Shri-Samavasaran-Mahamandir,
Palitana - 364270 (India)

Edition: 1998

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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Acharya
  2. Guru
  3. Gurudev
  4. Mandir
  5. Muni
  6. Parshwanath
  7. Prakrit
  8. Sanskrit
  9. Science
  10. Siddhasen Diwakar
  11. Tirthankars
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