24.09.2017 ►Acharya Shri VidyaSagar Ji Maharaj ke bhakt ►News

Posted: 24.09.2017
Updated on: 26.09.2017

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Origin of Jainism in Tamil Nadu ~ Unique Jina [ Jinendra Deva ] Idols in standing posture from Aarani Adinatha Temple, Tamil Nadu #JainismTamilNadu 🤔

Some scholars feel that Jain philosophy must have entered South India same time in 6th century B.C. Literary sources and inscription have it the ShruthakevaliBhadrabahu came over to Shravanabelagola with a 12000 strong retinue of Jain sages when north India found it hard to negotiate with the 12 year long famine in the reign of Chandragupta Maurya. Even Chandragupta accompanied this constellation of sages. On reaching Shravanabelagola, Bhadrabahu felt his end approaching he decided stay back along with Chandragupta and he instructed the Jain saints to tour over the Chola and Pandiyadomins.

But according to some other scholars Jainism must have existed in south India well before the visit of Bhadrabhu and Chandragupta. There are plenty of caves as old as 4th C A.D. are found with Jain inscriptions and Jain deities around Madurai, Trichy, Kanyakumari, Tanjavur. This deduction based on the following particulars:

Bharabahu would not have a big retinue if had no idea of Jains living in the southern parts of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The Buddhist composition ‘Mahavamsa’ composed during the reign of Dhatusena (461-479) describes the period between 5432 and 3012. It gives elaborate description of the capital of Anuradhapura while king Pandugabhaya was on throne. While giving a details list of building in the new capital, it says that a building called ‘Giri’ was constructed soly for Digambar Jain saints and that many Digambar sages lived there. ArahantharMandir existed on mount Udayagiri eve before Kharvela’s time. Kharavela’s inscription refers to this. Jainism had been the state religion for centuries in Kharavela’s time. Andhra was then part of Kalinga. Hence it possible that Jainism entered Andhra at the time of Lord Mahaveera. It must have moved over to Tamil Nadu. The Pashanothkeerna inscription and idols in arcot substantiate this. Jainism might have proceeded further to south Tamil Nadu and crossed over to Srilanka between the 5th and 4th century B.C

Ammanan (a naked man) is also another significant term used in Tamil literature for a Nigantha. *Reference - Wikipedia [ en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tamil_Jain ]

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