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  FAQ

What is Bhaktamar Stotra?

Bhaktamar Stotra of Acharya Manatunga

Bhaktamar Stotra was composed by Shri Mantungacharyaji. This composition is specially devoted to Lord Adinath (The 1st Trirthankar). This is composed by a devotee to praise his God and has tried to mark the path to reach the Devine Soul. It is only that a true devotee can reach God.

A true devotee is the one who can devote himself / herself fully by his / her own self-efforts to get rid of all his / her desires, attachments, aversions, anger, ego, deceit and greed. This is the true Bhakti (devotion).

When the devotee is totally engrossed in devotion and at the stage when he/she attains the enlightenment, there is no distance between the devotee and God.

From realistic point of view, to realize the purest form of the soul is called "no distance between the devotee and God". In other words, the devotee and God become one.

To praise his God in true devotion it is called Strotra. When Mantugacharyaji got enlightened, words flew out of his heart as, he had marked his path to God. This highly auspicious poem is in the form of a 4 line stanzas written in devotion to his God. This song makes him immortal. He is an ideal for every true devotee. Therefore from a devotee to reach this stage of enlightenment is simply called Bhaktamar.

Bhaktamar = Bhakt + Amar (Bhakt is a true devotee, Amar is an immortal person.)

Why there are 108 beads in a rosary?

Ans. There are five supreme entities: Arihants have 12 unique qualities, Siddhas have 8, Acharyas have 36, Upadhyayas have 25, and. Sädhus have 27. There are thus 108 unique qualities of these five supreme entities. Each bead in the rosary represents one such quality.

What is Pratikraman?

Pratikraman means to get away from sins (from bad work or paap), due to which all sins that has been done get washed that is get rid of all past paap which sacred task that has been showed by knowledgeable Saints.

Why shall we do Pratikraman?

To get rid of all paap that have done during the course of days and nights.

How many Pratikramans are there?

There are 5 Pratikramans namely (1) Devasi or Evening daily (2) Raia or Morning time Pratikraman (3) Pakhi or Fortnight (4) Chaumasi or Quarterly and (5) Samwatsari or Annual.

What is religion?

The Sanskrit word for the religion is Dharma. Dharma means the nature of the thing. For all living beings, the soul is the real thing. The religion therefore means to see, to know and to realize the true nature of the soul. In other words, the laws of nature in truest and purest form are the religion. Laws of nature lead us to the laws of self-initiative and self-effort. Without self-efforts and self-initiative, one cannot see, know or realize the true qualities of Self. That's why Jainism relies a great deal on one's own efforts and initiatives, and laws of nature. Our present fate is due to our past Karma. One can change it by self-effort . Unlike other living beings, we, human beings, have reasoning mind and capacity to think rationally. We have curiosity. We want to live a peaceful, happy and simple life. Since the time immemorial, we curious human beings have been seeking answers to the questions such as: who am I? Who am I not? Who is God? Who made the universe? What is my relationship with the universe? What is my real nature? How can I achieve my own nature, my true self? How do I achieve permanent happiness? Right answers to these questions constitute the religion.

What is the significance of Paryushana?

Paryushana means to stay closer, to stay closer to the self - to our soul (atma). Paryushana parva is eight (Swetamber tradition) to ten days (Digamber tradition) long. During this period, Jains practice various restraints like not eating (fasting) or eating only one meal a day and spend more time spiritually (like listening to Jain gurus, reading religious books, etc.). On the last day of this period, called Samvatsari (annual ceremony of public confession), they go through confession. They admit their sins and plea for forgiveness ( ksama). Admission of sins and pleading for forgiveness is directed towards the spiritual teachers, family members, friends and society members regardless of age or sex. Letters are written to the people they know and who were not approachable in person on the Samvatsari day acknowledging the wrong doings and seeking the pardon. The aspirant in a Samvatsari grants his/her forgiveness to all living beings and asks for the same favor to him/her; this is done through the Samvatsari Pratikraman (Pratikraman means to return from sins or confession) and raises the real spirit of universal friendship and goodwill: (Khämemi savvajive savve jiva khamantu me ! Metti me savvabhuesu veram majjha na kenavi !! means - I ask for forgiveness from all living beings; may all of them forgive me. May I have a friendship with all living beings and hostile to none). The pratyäkhyäna (renunciation of certain things) aspect is very elaborate during the Paryushana parva. The observance of pratyäkhyäna, the heart-felt acknowledgment of sins, solicitations for pardon and forgiving others, and the performance of Samvatsari Pratikraman is considered a highly important practice during the Paryushana parva. The Paryushana parva is the most important Jain ritual. Back to top

What is the meaning of Navkar Mahamantra?

Namo Arihantanam: I bow to those living beings who have reached enlightenment by overcoming inner weaknesses, who have attained infinite knowledge, vision, bliss, and power and showed us the path which brings an end to the cycle of birth and death.

Namo Siddhanam: I bow to those who have attained the state of perfection and immortality by liberating themselves of all karma.

Namo Airiyanam: I bow to those living beings who practice before preaching right knowledge, right perception, and right conduct.

Namo Uvajjhayanam: I bow to those living beings who understand the true nature of the soul and teach the importance of the spiritual life over the material life.

Namo Loe Savva Sahunam: I bow to all the living beings who strictly follow the five great vows of conduct and inspire us to live a simple life.

Eso Panch Namokaro: To these five types of great souls I offer my praise.

Savva Pava Panasano: Such praise will help diminish my negative vibrations and sins.

Mangala Nancha Savvesim: Giving this praise is most auspicious.

Padhamam Havai Mangalam: It is so auspicious as to bring happiness.

   
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