Devendrakirti Bhattaraka ►Biography

Posted: 15.06.2011
Updated on: 30.07.2015

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Devendrakirti Bhattaraka

His holiness Jagadguru Sri Devendrakirti (also Devenderkirty) Bhattaraka Mahaswamiji was born on May 25, 1949, as 'Vinaya Chandra' in a royal family of Mulky, South Kanara District of Karnataka State, India. He had his primary and secondary education at his native place and got his B.Sc. in 1971, M.A. in philosophy in 1974 and Doctorate (PhD) in 1979. His holiness Sri Mahaswami accepted the saintly life (Diksha) on March 20, 1971 and shortly after that was assigned as the Head of Sri Hombuja Jain Math on October 30, 1971. As a religious and spiritual head of Jain religion (Digambr Sect), he strives to bring harmony among all the various sects of the Jain faith (Shwetambar, Digambar, Sthanakwasi, Terapanthi, Srimadrajchand Panth etc) in India and abroad. It is because of his long vision, peace loving and quite nature that more than 51 temples have been built for the Hindus and Jain faith in the USA, Canada, England, Nepal, Australia and elsewhere. He is the first Jain monk of Digambar Sect in the history of Jain religion to go abroad, crossing the Indian borders, for the propagation of Indian religion and philosophies in general and Jain religion and philosophy in particular. (During the year 1974 he went to Belgium, Europe to grace the world conference on religion and peace held in Leuven University, Belgium in Europe.)

His holiness Sri Mahaswamiji travels throughout India and foreign countries to grace various religious, social, cultural, national and international functions. From July 1974 to present, he has gone abroad more than 58 times covering almost all the countries of the world. His recent visits were as follows:

  • South Africa in November and December 1999 - to grace the Parliament of World Religions.
  • South Korea in February 2000 - to grace the world religion and the Cultural conference.
  • Australia for the pratista ceremony of Lord Mahaveera Idol in Canberra and Sydney Temples.
  • USA for the pratista ceremony of Lord Pasvanatha and Mahavira idols in Lansing MI-Bharatiya Temple.
  • USA - NJ for Bruhat Sidhachakra Vidhan pooja in June 2005 at Karni Hindu Temple.
  • Pratistha ceremonies at Siddhachakra, NJSan Francisco, CA; Virginia USA, etc.

His holiness Sri Mahaswamiji was among the very few senior religious and spiritual leaders who were invited by the United Nation's Organisation (UNO) to attend a World Peace Summit in UNO headquarters, New York, USA, during August 2000.

His holiness Sri Mahaswamiji participated and represented India in World Religious Parliament when it was held in Chicago, Illinois in 1993, Cape Town, Africa in 1999, and Barcelona, Spain in year 2004. His holiness Sri Mahaswamiji has completed 39 pilgrimage tours of Sri Sammed Shikharji Sidda Kshetra, the most holy place of Jains. His holiness Sri Mahaswamiji is running several educational institutions to impart the religious, moral and cultural values of ancient Indian religions to general public in state of Karnataka. He has erected a 23 feet height marble statue of Bhagwan Parsvanath Swami, the tallest statue of its kind in India. As a highly learned scholar and orator, he has written several books on religion and philosophy and has delivered hundreds of speech around the world. Various organizations and general public have decorated his holiness with various titles such as Jagadgurre, Bharatgaurava, Bhattarakartna, Pratistabhaskara, Samyaktwachoodamani, Syadwadhesari, jnana Bhaskara, Jinasamayadeepaka, Bhattaraka Shiromani, Saddarmaparanjyoti, Vishwea Dharna Prevarthakha etc.

His holiness Sri Mahaswamiji has the mastery over several languages such as English, Kannada, Hindi, Tulu, sanshrit, Prakrut, etc., and is also chief editor of a monthly religious magazine "Guredeva." His Holiness has published hundereds of Religious books under the auspicious of Sri Siddhanthakeerty Granthmala which was started by his holiness himself. His holiness Sri Mahaswamiji has blessed ten Jaina Conventions so far held in North America including the recent one in New Jersey.

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