An Introduction To Jainism ► [29] Saliant Features of Jain Religion Universal Religion

Posted: 28.12.2008

One of the special qualities of Jain religion is that it can be acknowledged as 'universal religion'. Many creeds insist, "join my religion, come to my sect, then only you will be liberated." According to Jainism, religion is higher than sect. If a person who is not even a follower of Jain religion practises dharma which consists in becoming free from attachment and aversion, is a Jain in true sense. This shows the magnanimity of Jainism.

There is a concept of āsoccā kevalī in Jainism. According to this, there may be a person who has no initial knowledge of religion; neither has he joined any sect nor accepted anyone as his 'guru', but his cool and calm personality, polite and tolerant nature can take him to the state of attainment of "kevala jñāna". This concept of Jain religion paves the way for it being acknowledged as a universal religion, this is the concept of "Non-sectarian religion".

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