Glory of Jainism: Sadhvi Bhadrama

Published: 30.08.2012
Updated: 02.07.2015

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Sadhvi Bhadrama

Having listened to the inspiring spiritual discourse of Bhagwan Mahavir, Arnik’s parents accepted initiation and afterwards the father gave initiation to the son Arnik. Though the child Arnik became a monk, his daily functions like making a grass-bed and bringing alms were performed by the father himself. Despite the fact that the father had renounced the worldly life, he could not help loving the son. With the death of his father after some time, monk Arnik was required to perform all the routine functions like bringing alms etc. by himself and he realized the hardships of a Muni’s way of life.

Once during a summer-day, monk Arnik was walking bare-foot in excessive heat. He wanted to have some rest, so the monk stood under a balcony of a haveli (mansion) and he was thinking about the ordeal of a monk’s life. He also doubted his ability to live such a difficult life of a monk.

Meanwhile, a woman from the house of a great and rich merchant came and stood in the balcony. As she saw the monk, she was infatuated by his attractive body, lustrous face and his well-built physique. Her young age prompted her to enjoy the company of the young monk. She called her maid-servant and conveyed her request to him to purify her residence by his presence and accepting some food like modak (sweet ball).

Monk Arnik was very tired and severe heat of the sun was burning his body. He was thinking that he would not be able to bear the burden of austere way of life that he had chosen. It seemed that the invitation was just timely. He accepted the invitation from that beautiful lady. She offered him the sweet dish made with plenty of ghee, viz. ‘modak’. The monk was enslaved and trapped thus he preferred to stay in her residence only. He gave up the path of renunciation and became a worldly man.

Now there was pleasure and enjoyment all around and Arnik was totally engrossed in his new life-style and enjoyment of sensual pleasure. As Sadhvi Bhadra, Arnik’s mother came to know about this news, she was extremely shocked. She went from place to place in search of her son. She, an old nun, crying loudly for her son and blaming the woman who had tempted her, was regarded as a mad woman by people who never missed to tease her.

Once when Arnik was standing in the balcony, he heard the appealing and loud voice and utterances of his mother; he came rushing down in the street and bowed to her mother’s feet. She asked him as to who had tempted him to the worldly way of life. Arnik said that the path of strict penance was too difficult for him and added that he was unable to stick to disciplined and devoted way of life. Sadhvi Bhadra explained to him that it was the only way to get rid of the cycle of births and she urged him to accept initiation once again and live happily through a saintly way of life.

Arnik was prepared to accept initiation but he laid down one condition that after accepting initiation he would prefer to die by abjuring food and water. For a mother, this was a painful thought. However a willing sacrifice of life was less harmful than deliberate abjuring of initiation, she thought, and she agreed to the son’s condition. Arnik behaved according to the promise given to the mother. He accepted initiation once again and finally gave up his life by renouncing food and water. Finally he attained pure absolute knowledge (kevalajnana) and the ultimate salvation (moksha).

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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Page glossary
Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Bhadra
  2. Bhagwan Mahavir
  3. Body
  4. Ghee
  5. Mahavir
  6. Moksha
  7. Muni
  8. Sadhvi
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