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Jainism – An Overview

Jainism is an ancient dharmic religion from India that prescribes a path of non-violence for all forms of living beings in this world. Its philosophy and practice relies mainly on self effort in progressing the soul on the spiritual ladder to God consciousness. Any soul which has conquered its own inner enemies and achieved the state of supreme being is called jina (Conqueror or Victor). Jainism is the path to achieve this state. Jainism is often referred to as Jain Dharma or Shraman Dharma or the religion of Nirgantha by ancient texts. Jainism was revived by a lineage of 24 enlightened ascetics called tirthankaras culminating with Parsva (9th century BCE) and Mahavira (6th century BCE). In the modern world, it is a small but influential religious minority with as many as 4 million followers in India, and successful growing immigrant communities in North America, Western Europe, the Far East, Australia and elsewhere.

A symbol of Jainism consisting of a hand and a wheel reading “ahimsa”, the Jain vow of non-violence.

Videos

Non-Violence – Jain Way of Life Jainism

Jainism and Buddhism: A Comparative Study

Special Topics

AtmaDharma – A library of over 200 downloadable Jain books in many languages. Lots of Audio (Songs, Lectures) and Video.

Jaina – Federation of Jain Associations in North America

jainlibrary.org – A complete list of texts on Jainism, sponsored by the JAINA Education Committee

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