Tirthankara Bhagawan Mahavira ► 00. Publisher’s Note

Posted: 13.05.2015

The life and missions of Bhagawan Shri Mahavira has been of boundless inspiration to thousands and millions of people all these years. The whole life span of Bhagawan Shri Mahavira has been full of significant events which led to Nirvana. It is this great spirit of thought and action, full of benevolence and compassion, that had to be captured and transformed in a book form; a captivating panorama etched out with eloquent lines and filled with fascinating colors. To recreate these life events, the artist had not only to visualize but to live with those great moments on his mind’s plane to lend authenticity to his work. This could be possible only for an artist of the class of Shri Gokulbhai Kapadia whose ready ability to gain insight into his subject has been one of his great assets. It is for this reason that he could use line and color of unsurpassed purity and sharpness and expressive strength. When the communion is complete, the effect can thus be total.

Who else but Muni Shri Yashovijayji could have conceived of the idea of this great work of art, a work that will remain one of the most involvement grandiose of the art works of our time? For, the dictates of authenticity and the grammar of the art were so exacting that it called for nothing short of a complete spiritual harmony. Muni Shri Ysahovijayaji can dwell in the field of art with the same ease and grace as in the spiritual domain. His form grip on the grammar, technique and idiom of the color is so fascinating that whatever has been turned out under his direction has acquired a radiant sense of space and even microscopic luminosity. The artist never missed the correct tone and the appropriate touch. While pictorial biographies of other Religious Teachers and Seers adorn the world libraries; the absence of one depicting the life of Bhagawan Shri Mahavira, the apostle of Ahimsa, Was extremely shocking and disturbing, the void has to be filled not only because the subject matter was highly satisfying from the point of view of art, but was also a rich and rewarding spiritual experience. With this inspiration, the was just complete for, What then followed was torrents of ideas, its assimilation, deep research, formation of themes, delineation and finally the emergence of forms and figures characterized by elegance and refined use of color.

The book, Which is the first of its kind of the life of Bhagawan Shri Mahavira, has been planed and designed by the Muniji. Each painting carries Miniji’s lucid commentary juxtaposed in Hindi, Gujarati and English. The religious significance and the ritualistic implication of each life event has been depicted through linear sketches drawn in period style by Shri Ramnikbhai Shah of Dabhoi and used as foot notes to the commentaries in the form of and design of art strips which impart visual beauty to the printed word 140 symbolistic drawings have also been aesthetically used to embellish the pages carrying commentaries. In addition twelge appendices containing valuable information of the paintings have been included in the last section.

It is difficult to express adequately the depth of gratitude which the Samiti owes to the Muniji for his indefatigable labors in bringing out this monumental work of exquisite beauty and incredible authenticity for the benefit of the humanity.

For the one who has devoted life to the service of humanity, living becomes a continuous mission with no respite. Justifiable with the publication of this book, Muniji plans to launch another project on the lives of four Tirthankaras: Bhagawan Shri Parswanath, Bhagawan Shri Neminath, Bhagawan Shri Shantinath and Bhagawan Shri Adinath. Work on yet few more books will follow in the wake of the second project. We wish Muniji all success in his endeavor.

The Samiti records here with deep reverence the blessings of His Holiness Acharya Srimad Vijay Pratapsurishwarji Maharaj and His Holiness Acharya Srimad Vjay Dharmasurishwarji Maharaj sent for the success of this book. The success of this endeavor is largely due to their Holiness’ benediction.

We express our gratitude to Shri Gokulbhai Kapadia, Shri Ramnikbhai Shah and all over well wishers for their valuable co-operation and keen interest evinced from time to time.

CE 1974, V.S. 2030, Godiji Jain Upashray, Bombay.
Jain Chitrakala Nidarshan Samiti

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Title: Tirthankara Bhagawan Mahavira
Artist: Gokuldas Kapadia
Publishers: Jain Sanskruti Kala Kendra & Shri Parshwa Padmavati Trust, Bombay

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