Dada Guru

Posted: 04.07.2011
Updated on: 12.11.2014

Alias

Dada Gurus, Dādā Guru, Dādā Gurū, Dādā Gurūs, Dādā-Gurus

The Śvetambara Kharatara Gaccha, which is particularly popular in north-western and central India, has developed a set of four sanctified medieval teachers, the dādā-gurus or dādā-guru-devas. Literally, dādā means 'paternal grandfather' and consequently a dādā-guru is a senior male spiritual guide.

These preceptors are the four ācāryas of the Kharatara Gaccha, namely

  1. Jinadatta Sūri (1075-1154 CE),
  2. Jinacandra Sūri Maṇidhārī (1140-1166 CE),
  3. Jinakuśala Sūri (1280-1332 CE)
  4. Jinacandra Sūri II (1541-1613 CE).

Although they have not attained full kevala-jñāna, they are honoured as important Jaina personalities. The respect paid to them and the power attributed to these teachers stems from the belief that they protected and preserved, but at the same time reformed the Jaina religion, and that through the performance of miracles, they converted others to Jainism.

Source: Jaina Temple Architecture in India - Julia A.B. Hegewald

References

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