Bhagavan Mahavira Life and Philosophy : [02.08] Fearlessness and Exertion of Spiritual Vigour

Published: 02.08.2005
Updated: 02.07.2015
2 Thirty Years Of Family Life

uccess in life depends on two factors: wisdom and energy.
Knowledge unattended by power is pitiable and power uncontrolled by wisdom is dangerous.

A harmonious combination of the two makes a man fearless and strong.

Vardhamana possessed both in equal proportion. He was never touched by any kind of fear.

Once his playmates persuaded him to play the Amalaki game with them. They played in the garden of the house. All the children ran towards the tree. Vardhamana outran everyone else and climbed up the tree. When ha was coming down, he saw a huge snake coiling around the trunk of the tree. The snake hissed at the sight of Vardhamana. Struck with fear the rest of the children ran away. Vardhamana, however, remained unruffled. He caught hold of the snake and disentangling it from the tree threw it away. He climbed down the tree and his playmates applauded him. He had won the game.

Vardhamana was hardly eight years old, but his fearlessness and strength came to be recognised even at that tender age. Being born in a family of the Ksatriya he began to exhibit the character of a Ksatriya. He was also born with the accumulated strength of sadhana he had performed in the course of his previous lives. The spiritual and physical growth impressed everyone.

Knowledge is a part of the spiritual energy of man. One who is devoid of this cannot acquire knowledge and one who is devoid of knowledge cannot rightly exhibit spiritual energy. A proper synthesis of both leads to success. Vardhamana had both spiritual energy and knowledge in him. His relatives knew that the child was physically strong, but they did not know that he had knowledge also. He was sent to school as usual at the age of eight. (There are some who say that he never went to school).

Vardhamana was a very respectful child. He was very much devoted and obedient to his parents. As his extra-sensory knowledge had already become well-developed, he was conversant with what was being taught at school. Yet he joined school simply because he had been commanded to do so. The teacher welcomed him and he joined his companions. It is said that Indra, the king of gods, disguised himself as a Brahmana and came to the school to test Vardhamana. He came to Vardhamana and asked him several questions about letters and their combinations. The child's answers were grammatically so much of a higher standard that the Brahmana Indra suggested to the teacher that the child was master of subjects taught in that kind of a school, and hence needed no more schooling.

The teacher felt himself to be too small before Vardhamana. He asked the latter to remove his confusion in matters of teaching. The child did so easily and promptly.

Vardhamana was removed from the school and the king was told that he had done his schooling. Vardhamana's relatives now began to acknowledge the depth of his knowledge too.

It is really more difficult to fathom person's internal depth, than the external one.

Title: Bhagavan Mahavira Life and Philosophy
Translated & Edited: Muni Mahendra Kumar


Edition 1995
Publisher: Jain Vishva Bharati, Ladnun, India

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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Fear
  2. Fearlessness
  3. Indra
  4. Ksatriya
  5. Sadhana
  6. Vardhamana
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