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Ahimsa Times - October 2004 Issue

Vol. No. 52

October, 2004

"A SRAMANA BY EQUANIMITY"
A PERSON BECOMES A MONK BY EQUANIMITY, A BRAHMANA BY PRACTISING CELIBACY
AN ASCETIC BY ACQUIRING KNOWLEDGE AND A HERMIT BY HIS AUSTERITIES

SAINTS

L. K. ADVANI AND VASUNDHARA RAJE CALL ON ACHARYA MAHAPRAGYA
The head of Jain Shwetambar Terapanthi sect, Acharya Shri Mahapragya, who has been spending his chaturmas period at Siriyari town in Rajasthan has been drawing thousands of visitors and devotees every day to pay their respect to him and obtain his blessings. Alongwith the Acharya, a large number of his disciples, both sadhus and sadhwis are having their chaturmas there. The visitors calling on him include ministers, other prominent politicians, religious leaders, educationists, business men and professionals. Recently, Sri L.K. Advani, President of Bharatiya Janta Party and Smt. Vasundhara Raje, Chief Minister of Rajasthan called on the Acharya to seek his counsel and blessings on the occasion of Acharya Bhikshu's bi-centenary celebrations. There are excellent facilities available for stay, meals and transportation of visitors, the record number of whom has been 80,000 on a single day and average figure has been around 30-40,000. In spite of the large number of visitors pouring in every day from all over the country, everything is extremely well-organised and strict discipline is maintained. Prayers followed by Pravachan are held every morning, where thousands of devotees, both gents and ladies, shramans and shramanis, guests and visitors sit and listen the discourses with rapt attention.

ACHARYA SHIV MUNI OFFERED TO RESTORE ORIGINAL STATUS AND INVITED DISSIDENT SAINTS TO REJOIN SHRAMAN SANGH BUT THE OFFER TURNED DOWN - On the occasion of his 63rd birth day, the Shwetambar Sthanakwasi Jain Acharya, Dr. Shiv Muni had declared that the original organisational structure would be restored as existing prior to 27th April, 2003 in the larger interest of the Sangh's unity and invited all the saints, who had faith in Shraman Sangh but had separated themselves, to rejoin the Sangh. If necessary, a committee of five saints would be constituted to work out a solution as regards the positions to be held and final decision would be taken accordingly. On this occasion of Acharya's birth day, various programmes including seminars, medical camps, blood donations etc. were conducted. It is however now learnt that the offer made by the Acharya for unification has been turned down by Shri Roop Muni, calling it as futile and meaningless.

MUNI TARUN SAGARJI WANTS TO FREE MAHAVIR SWAMI FROM THE HANDS OF JAINS
He is the revolutionary Jain Monk, Munishri Tarunsagarji. He does not give his Pravachans in Jain temples. He says, "I want to escape from the temples. That is why I have stopped giving pravachans in your temples. I give Pravachans in the squares of roads, because I want to see Mahavir out of temples. My only wish is to free Mahavir from the hands of Jains, and want to spread his thoughts in masses". He is doing what he says. Millions of non-Jain people have heard his discourses. His discourses are attended by masses and the highest number of the people was 5 Lakhs when he delivered pravachan from Red Fort of Delhi. During his visit to a small town, having population of just 5000, his pravachans were attended by 40,000 people every day for one full week. All types of people, including common people and politicians, Jain and Hindu monks, teachers and students, intellectuals, journalists, businessmen etc, attend his discourses.

Each of his Chaturmas is observed in different states. He has planned to visit all the states of India and also Nepal. Until now he has visited Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat and now he is in Nashik, Maharashtra. Probably he is the only saint whose discourses are arranged by all sects of Jains with equal participation. He has brought all Jains together and out of temples and sthanaks. He has modern views of Jainism. He does not hesitate to say the truth even if it is not digestible to the Jains. He is Jain Munishri Tarun Sagarji. People involved in miracles should see how a Muni could spread Jainism in masses without showing miracles! Courtesy: Mahavir through E-Mail :  jainlist@yahoogroups.com

DELEGATION FROM BANGALORE AND CHENNAI REQUESTS ACHARYASHREE TO VISIT SOUTH
Ahimsa Yatra : Siriyari :On 26th September a large delegation from south India, specially from Bangalore and Chennai, reached Siriyari in a special train from Chennai.They handed over a list with the signatures of 3000 persons to Acharyashree Mahaprajnaji supporting their request that Acharyashree Mahaprajnaji might visit south India in the near future. News courtesy: Carla and Christian Geerdes, Editors HereNow4U, Berlin, Germany.

ACHARYA SHRI VIDHYA SAGAR JI ASKS CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS TO HELP IN REMOVING CORRUPTION AND PAVE THE WAY OF AHIMSA
Jain Digambar Acharya Shri Vidhya Sagar Ji Maharaj, while talking to representatives of the Chartered Accountants Association at Jabalpur, said that the chartered accountants in the country should take up the responsibility of removing corruption from business circles and thus build a healthy society which would contribute immensely in the task of nation building. The group was led by Shri K. Kumar, President of the association.

TEMPLES
GIRNAR SHRINE HINDU JAIN DISPUTE: JAINS FILE COMPLAINT
Junagadh, October 29: The shrine on the fifth peak of Girnar mountain in Junagadh is once again in the eye of the storm as Jains and Hindus fight for control over the disputed site. On Thursday, a group of Jain pilgrims from Delhi and Uttar Pradesh were prevented from offering prayers here, allegedly, by two Hindu priests, who control the shrine. A police complaint has been lodged with Junagadh taluka police under Sections 323, 504, 506(2), 114 of the IPC and Section 135 of the BP Act and police have been deployed at the disputed site.

Meanwhile, Junagadh taluka PSI and investigating officer A K Devra rushed to the spot at Girnar mountain and deployed additional police force. When Devra reached the spot, the two sadhus against whom the complaint was filed were not available. Devra said, Barring this, no untoward incident has been reported so far. This is a sensitive issue between the two communities and police will maintain law and order at the peak.''

It was also learnt that a group of around 1,000 Jain pilgrims had come to Junagadh under the leadership of Phulchand Jain. They came in 13 buses from Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and surrounding places. They camped at Bhavnath Taleti at the foot of Girnar mountain. The presence of many Jain devotees gave birth to rumours that they had come to town to stage a protest against Hindus occupying the disputed shrine. Meanwhile, Mahant Tansukhgiri of the Junagadh Hindu Samaj said that he and other Hindu sadhus would submit a memorandum to the Collector in protest against Thursday's incident. The controversy involves the shrine on the fifth peak of Girnar mountain, on which both Hindus and Jains have staked their claim. According to Hindus, it is Lord Dattatreya's temple, while Jain claims it is Neminath shrine.

BHAGWAN RISHABH DEV TEMPLE AT KANGRA TRACED BACK TO MAHA-BHARAT PERIOD
Though the Jain culture at one time was very rich in Himachal Pradesh region, it almost disappeared and there is hardly any trace of it owing to the overhelming popularity and publicity of Buddhist religion. A few relics still remain which go to show that Jainism had a strong and powerful presence here once upon a time. One such example is an ancient temple within the premises of the ruined fort at old Kangra. It has been established with certainity that the idol of Bhagwan Shri Rishabh Dev, the first Jain Tirthankar, installed in this temple belongs to Shri Neminath Bhagwan's period, e.g. the Mahabharat time. This fort is now under the control of State Archeology Department and it is strongly believed that it was originally built by king Srushmita,a staunch devotee of Rishabh Dev Ji, who had fought against Pandavas and lost the fort. There had been continuous upheavals of power since then and the fort was damaged and re-built by several rulers, including Mohammed Gazanavi and Moghul emperor Jahangir. Though the fort was repeatedly attacked and damaged, the temple and the idol therin remained intact all through. Jain saint, Punjab Kesari Shri Vallabh Surishwar Ji, while touring through this region, some 50 years ago, had located this abandoned and unattended temple in the wholly ruined fort built on a tall hillock. Since then regular worship is carried out and the place is visited by tourists, visitors and devotees. The idol is about 100 cm. in height and is made in sandstone. The Shwetambar Jain Committee of Kangra has recently built a new temple of Adinath Bhagwan with proper facilities for stay at the foothills of the fort.

"ATISHAY" IN PARSHAVNATH JAIN TEMPLE AT MAKRONIA TOWN, M. P.
Described as a miracle, the idol of Lord Parshavnath changed its colour on the last day of Paryushan Parva in Jain temple of Makronia town. Devotees rushed to the temple and priests claimed it was an 'Atishay'. Idol was made of eight metals and the outer colour of the Lord Parshavnath idol was silver. But it changed into golden. The golden colour was on the head, chest and the back of the idol and the remaining parts were still of silver colour. Saints declared that it was a good omen. According to mythological sayings, the Indra Dev and other Devata performed 'Abhishek' of the idol and as a result, the mark was left behind. Devotees from all over the city and other parts of the district, rushed to the temple for 'Darshan'. The temple was constructed in the year 1987 and the idol was consecrated in 2001.

JAIN PRATISHTHA MAHOTSAV AT NIAGARA FALLS
Niagara Falls, Ontario, October 4, 2004: Canada is well known for many things and one of that is the beauty of the Niagara Falls. This can be noticed from the stamps of Niagara Falls issued by Canada and United States of America. An important, multifaith event has happened at this place for local residents. During the last quarter of the 20th century, 'brain drain' from India brought few Jains to Niagara region. They were scattered all around and observed their religious practices within their homes. With the passing of time, they established themselves and got together to celebrate holy days and festivals. Since they were very few, they could not have a temple of their own. They joined hands with local Hindus who had formed in 1985 the Niagara Hindu Samaj. Later they established in 2001, Shiv Mandir (Temple) at 5284 Second Avenue, Niagara Falls, Ontario, L2H 4K2, Canada. The Jains felt the need to have their place of worship. They requested the Hindus to share their sacred temple and the request was gladly accepted. Two Pratimajis (icons) of 23rd and 24th Tirthankars - Parshwanath Bhagwan and Mahavir Swami and a tablet of Namokar Mantra (Universal Prayer) made of marble are brought from India.

A two-day event for the consecratory installation ceremony, known as "Murti Pratishtha Mahotsav" was organized. On October 2 and 3, 2004, Pujyashri Chitrabhanuji blessed the Pratishtha Mahotsav with Vidhikar and then Pravachan (discourse) by Chitrabhanuji. The ceremony started with welcome by NHS president Kamlesh Sharma and then Snatra Puja, Kumbh Sthapana, Akhand Deep, Aarti, Mangal Deep and Shanti Kalash followed by Swamivatsalya Pritibhojan (holy feast) and on next day, Snatra Puja, 36 Abhisheks (18 of each Tirthankar), Murti Pratishtha (Mhoorat at 12:39 p.m.), Aarti, Mangal Deep, and Shanti Kalash, was conducted, followed by Pravachan by Chitrabhanuji, Swamivatsalya. Courtesy: Prakash Mody, E-Mail: mody@sympatico.ca

A GRAND NEW SHANKHESHWAR PARASHWA NATH TEMPLE BUILT AT BHINMAL IN RAJASTHAN
Bhinmal, a small town in Jalore district of Rajasthan, many of whose residents have settled down in Bombay and Ahmedabad for business has the reputation of being one of the oldest towns with a large concentration of Jains in ancient period. The new research on Bhagwan Mahavir's travels to spread Jainism indicate that he stopped over at this place and probably also held his chaturmas here. Though there are many Jain temples in the town, a new temple of Shankheshwar Parshwanath has been built there having grand design with a totally ancient look. People have been coming in for prayers and worship from far and near.

TEMPLE PRATISHTHA CEREMONY OF SRI VIJAY SHANTI SURISHWAR JI AT JALORE
The devotees of Shri Shanti Vijay Ji Maharaj would be glad to know that a new temple has been built at his birth place, Ramsin Nagar in Jalore district of Rajasthan, the pratishtha ceremony and celebrations of which would be held in February, 2005 with the cooperation of Guru Mandir pedhi, Mandoli. For details, contact: Guru Mandir Pedhi, Ph. 02969-233050.

ANOTHER PRATSHTHA MAHOTSAVA AT ORLANDO
Orlando (US): Gurudev Shri Chitrabhanuji will lead and bless the 3 day pratistha Mahotsav of Jain Society of Central Florida. Murties to be installed are: Rushabhdev Swami (Digamber), Mahavir Swami (swetamber), Shimandhar Swami, Navkar Mantra Shila, Padmavati Devi and Vir Ghantakaran. Ceremonies will be conducted by vidhikarak Shri Narendrabhai Nandu and his group of Mumbai. Also gracing this occasion will be visiting scholars: Samniji, Pujya Sunandaben Vora, Shri Dhirajlal Pandit, Shri Nautambhai Vakil and Pramodaben. The Society heartily invites everyone to come and join the festivities. Special arrangements have been made for hotel accommodation. Call for details: Shashikant Shah (President) 407-323-3509, Ketu Sheth (Secretary) 386-788-6502 or Renu Vardhan (Treasurer). 407-682-6476, E-Mail : jsocf@hotmail.com - Jain Heritage Centres News Service.

AWARDS

MOHAN BHAI JAIN HONOURED WITH GANDHI SEWA PURASKAR
Gandhi Sewa award for the year 2004 was awarded to Shri Mohan Lal Jain, patron of Anuvrat Bharati and founder of Balodaya a novel experiment for the mental development of children at Rajsamand in Rajasthan. The award was given away by Shri Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, Vice-President at a special function arranged at his residence. Shri Mohan Lal Jain, popularly known as Mohan Bhai, now past eighty, has been working for the last seventy years with complete devotion and dedication in the fields of Harijan Sewa, self-sufficient education, character-building, rural development and non-addiction of liquor. He is proud of having worked with Gandhi Ji, as a social worker.

DR. P. C. LUNIA HONOURED WITH PROCLAMATION AWARD OF AMERICAN CONGRESS
A prominent business man of Jaipur, dealing in diamond trade, Dr. P.C. Lunia was honoured at a glittering ceremony in Washington by World Business Forum with 'U. L. Congress Proclammation Award'. Dr. Lunia was also honoured with 'Jefferson Book Award' for his well-known book, "A Vision of Golden America". Dr. Lunia has been working assiduously for various projects in India, in the fields of social service for humanitarian causes, building moral values in society, medical help to the needy, besides computer education.

PRESIDENT'S AWARD FOR DR. BHAG CHAND JAIN
Professor Bhagchandra Jain, former Head of the Department of Pali and Prakrit has been conferred the prestigious Award of the Certificate of Honour in Prakrit and Pali by the President of India, the announcement of which was made on the occasion of Independence Day , 2004. Dr. Jain is a reputed scholar of international fame in Jainism and Buddhism (Prakrit and Pali ). He was the Professor and Director of Jain Studies in Rajasthan University, Jaipur and Parshwanath Vidyapeeth, B.H.U.,Varanasi. At present he is working as Joint Director, National Institute of Prakrit Studies and Research, Shravanabelagola, Mysore University, Karnataka. He has also participated in the International seminars on Buddhist and Jain Studies in the Harward, Bologana and other Universities. Professor Jain got published about forty research volumes on the subject to his credit. He did his Ph.D. under Commonwealth Fellowship from Ceylon on Jainism in Buddhist Literature and D.Litt. in three subjects, Sanskrit, Pali -Prakrit and Hindi. History of Buddhist Culture, Buddhist Psychology, Jainism and Ecology, Jain Logic, Jainism and Mahavira, Encyclopaedia of Jainism in three volumes, Catuhshatakam, Dhammaparikkha, Candappahacariu, Yashodharacaritam, History of Jain Philosophy and Culture, Contribution of Buddhism to Indian Culture are his outstanding books on which he got literary awards from different institutions. He has also been honoured by bestowing Award as "Man of the Year 2004" by the Ameircan Biographical Institution. Dr. Bhag Chand is also a member of Advisory Council of the Ahimsa Foundation.

CONFERENCES & EVENTS

STHANAKWASI JAIN GROUPS MEET AT INDORE TO FORM ALL INDIA FEDERATION
Representatives of various Jain Sthanakwasi Sravak Sangh met recently at Indore on the 4th and 5th September, 2003 and arrived at a decision to constitute an All India Sthanakwasi Jain Federation in order to strengthen the samaj and show full faith and confidence in the leadership of Acharya Dr. Shiv Muni. A high-powered committee with the following members, was formed to consult all concerned sravaks and saints and prepare a constitution of the proposed Federation: Sri Umrao Mal Chordia, Jaipur as Convenor; Sri Sumati Lal Karnawat, Thane, Dr. Kailash Jain, Bhatinda, Sri Anand Prakash and Prof. Ratan Jain from Delhi, Sri Ashok Babu Seth from Ahmednagar, Sri C.S. Barla from Jaipur, Sri Kachar Das Porwal from Pune, Sri Nemnath Jain and Gajraj Singh Jhamad from Indore and Sri Shanti Lal Kankaria from Bangalore.

JAIN BODY TO HOLD MORAL EDUCATION CAMP FOR TALENTED STUDENTS
New Delhi, Oct 21, As part of its effort to establish a dialogue with the youth, the Jain Maitri Samooh is organising an annual camp in Madhya Pradesh from October 23 during which the Young Jaina award honouring talented students will be presented. The award ceremony is being organised to mark the 2600th birth anniversary of Lord Mahavira. The aim of the camp, to be held in Ashok Nagar town is to inculcate moral values in students so that they can prove to be better members of the society. So far, the Samooh has honoured around 2350 students including those selected for the administrative services. This is the third Young Jain Award which will be given during the camp.

AHIMSA RALLY AND WORLD FRIENDSHIP DAY CELEBRATED AT GUWAHATI
On the occasion of Kshamavani Parva, a large ahimsa rally of Jain community was taken out to popularise non-violence amongst the masses in the holy presence of Digambar Muni Shri Prasann Sagar Ji maharaj at Dispur in Guwahati (Assam) on the 3rd October, 2004. World Friendship Day was also celebrated on this holy occasion. A nine-day Bhagwat-Jinendra Maha-Archna Mahotsava was also celebrated from 14th to 23rd October, 04 with the blessings of Acharya Shri 108 Pushpdant sagar Ji and presence of Shri Prasann Sagar Ji maharaj.

JAINA-YATRA TO SAMMET SHIKHARJI FROM JAN.18 TO FEB. 4
The tentative itinerary is to visit Kalyanak Bhoomi Temples of Shree Shikharji, Rijubalika,Guniyaji, Pawapuri, Kundalpur, Rajgir, Lachhwad, Kakandi, Champapuri, Varanasi, Ayodhya, Ratnapuri and Shouryapuri. We will also visit Patna, Bodhgaya Nalanda and Taj Mahal. We will spend three days at Veerayatan Ashram of Acharya Shree Chandanaji. She is arranging a special program for the pilgrims to learn about the progress of the JAINA-Veerayatan joint project of building a new school at Pawapuri. We will also visit Parshwanath Vidypeeth in Banaras where tomorrow's Pandits of Jainism are educated. All in all, it will be a wonderful religious and educational experience for Jains from U.S. As always, we will invite a prominent Jain scholar to accompany us in Yatra who can explain the significance of our Teerths.

The cost of the ground package in India including all transportation, lodging and boarding is $750+$45 for registration fee. We are planning for 80 Yatris and registration will be on first come first served basis. At the end of the Yatra, we will arrange train or air reservation for you to go to your home city. On receiving your application, We will send you the confirmation and updated itinerary with more details. Remember: JAINA Yatra is also a wonderful opportunity for you to have your loved one in India to join you for 15 days of spiritual journey together. Air travel between North America and India are your own responsibility and we strongly urge everyone to get travel insurance. Our initial plan to include Nepal has been changed in view of current uncertainties there. Instead, we will plan extended stay at Pawapuri or Agra. For more information, contact: Dilip V Shah, Chairman - JAINA Pilgrimage committee 1902 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia PA 19103 or E-Mail : dilipvshah@aol.com

WORKSHOP ON ACHARYA BHIKSHU PHILOSPHY CONDUCTED AT KOLKATA
A workshop on Acharya Bhikshu's life and his philosophy was held at Kolkata on 22nd August,2004. His thoughts about Jain philosophy from different angles as well as details of his life were discussed by the participants with the objective of understanding the opposite views under the aspect of Anekant. Sadhvi Kanchan Prabhaji had inspired this workshop under the guidance of Mr. Nirmal Nowlakha on the occasion of bicentenary celebrations of Acharya Bikshu. News courtesy: Carla and Christian Geerdes, Editors HereNow4U,Online Magazine, Berlin, Germany, E-Mail : editors@herenow4u.de

300TH BIRTH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATIONS OF BHAGAWAN PARSHWANATH
Kundalpur (Bihar): Paramapujya Her Holiness 105 Ganani Sri Gnanamathi mathaji called for celebration of 300th birth anniversary of Bhagawan Parshwanath to be held in the year 2005. She advised that the celebration should be observed by conducting religious and academic activities at both national and regional levels. It has been decided that this event will be inaugurated on the 6th of January, 2005 at Bhelpur - Varanasi, the birth place of Bhagwan Parshwanath.

The readers are requested to send the details of the historical aspects of the places related to Lord Parshwanath along-with details of the place, documents & illustrations, etc. to the below-mentioned address. Karmayogi Sri Ravindrakumar Jain, President, Bhagawan Mahavir Birth Place, Kundalpur, Nandhyavartha Mahal, Kundalpur Post (Nalanda) - 803101, Bihar State. Courtesy:- Jain Heritage Centres News Service.

JAIN DOCTORS INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON 8TH AND 9TH JANUARY, 2005 AT MUMBAI
The Mumbai Branch of Jain Doctors Federation, is holding an international conference of Jain Doctors on 8TH and 9TH January, 2005 at Terapanth Bhavan, Thakur Complex, Off. Western Express Highway, Kandivali (East), Mumbai - 400 101, Maharashtra, India, under auspicious nishra of P.P. Acharyashri Padmasagar Surishwarji M. S. The program will start on 8th Jan from 7:45 AM onwards & will go on for 2 full days. Respected Guru Bhagwants, various experts on Jainism, Jain Doctors & Scientists will discuss the subject of science with spirituality for the achievement of global peace. The topics likely to be covered will be as follows:

1. Jain Health Philosophy, Science, Global Peace and Animal Welfare.
2. Prevention of life threatening diseases by principles for Jainism - through saatvic aahar.
3. Life style modification to achieve mental peace and happy life by observing Tapasyas and Kriyas of Jain Religion.
4. Need of Jain Religion in day to day life to promote ahimsa, peace, compassion and brotherhood through tolerance for each other.
Importantly, unity of Jain doctors brotherhood, ahimsak treatment & allied topics will be discussed.
A workshop on Jain meditation will also be conducted. Bhakti-sandhya will be held on both the evenings. Muni Shri Nayapadma Sagarji Maharaj have given his guidance and blessings for the success of this conference. Doctors & their spouses are invited to attend this conference.

For further details, contact:
1. Dr. M. M. Begani - Chairman-Scientific Committee - 98200 38850.
2. Dr. Bharat Parmar - Organising Secretary - 98200 70580.
3. Dr. K. P. Jain - Co-Chairman - 98202 91930.
4. Dr. Hasmukh Jain - Chairman-Accomodation - 98921 92421.
International Co-Ordinators,
Dr. Sujal Shah - 98200 69812, E-Mail : sujalshah@vsnl.com and Dr. (Mrs) Manisha Shah - 022 - 3334 2020.
Sujit Nilegaonkar, E-Mail:
sujit8246@rediffmail.com

GANDHI WEEK CELEBRATED IN HOUSTON METRO, SEPT.27-OCT.3
Mahatma Gandhi was a universal person. He was a Time Magazine Man Of the Year 1930, Time Magazine Runner-up Person of the Century - 1999. Six Nobel Prize winners followed his path. Moral values (Truth, Non-violence, Love, Justice, Peace, Service) taught and practiced by him, still have relevance today. To pay our tribute to his legacy, many activities were planned in the Houston metro area during the Mahatma Gandhi Week Celebration from September 27 to October 3, 2004. Mahatma Gandhi was a universal person. He was a Time Magazine Man Of the Year 1930, Time Magazine Runner-up Person of the Century - 1999. Six Nobel Prize winners followed his path. Moral values (Truth, Non-violence, Love, Justice, Peace, Service) taught and practiced by him, still have relevance today. To pay our tribute to his legacy, many activities were planned in the Houston metro area during the Mahatma Gandhi Week.

More than 15 Indo-American organizations (e.g. Anjali Center of Performing Arts, Arya Samaj, Greater Houston, Consulate General of India, Gujarati Sahitya Sarita, Hare Krishna Temple, Hindu Sevak sangh, Houston Durga Bari Society, Harris County Public Library System, Houston Kannada Vrinda, India Culture Center, Jain Society, JVB Preksha Meditation Center, Katy Bal Gokulam, Mahatma Gandhi Library, Pratham USA, Shri Meenakshi Temple, etc.) and more than 10 American organizations (e.g. Decade of Non-Violence, Episcopal High School, Fort Bend County Library System, Houston Coalition for Justice, Houston Peace and Justice Center, Houston Story Tellers' Guild, Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston, Unity Church, etc.) joined together to celebrate the occasion.

PARSHWANATH INTERNATIONAL OPEN CHESS TOURNAMENT WILL BE HELD IN DELHI
World Chess Federation has entrusted Delhi Chess Association to conduct Parshwanath International Chess Tournament at Delhi. The Parshwanath tournament will be held in Delhi from 2nd to 11th January, 2005. It is expected that event will generate interest in the game at both national and international level. The participants will include Grandmasters from more than twelve countries. The award money will be Rs. 6 lacs. The tournament is sponsored by Shri Pradeep Jain, chairman of Parshwanath Developers Limited. Parshwanath Group is also promoting chess game in junior section by organising another tournament from October 14th, which will be held at Bapu Samaj Sewa Kendra, Punchkuian Road, New Delhi. The junior tournament will be attended by over 300 contestants from all over the country.

INSTITUTIONS

ACHARYA BHIKSHU HOSPITAL AND MIDDLE SCHOOL AT SIRIYARI
The Chief Minister of Rajasthan Smt. Vasundhara Raje made important announcement at the function of Acharya Bhikshu Bicentenary in presence of H H. Acharya Mahapragya and a huge gathering.The government showed interest and announced to build a hospital to provide the best medication to lacs of people coming to Siriyari every year and people living in the nearby rural areas. Smt. Vasundhara Raje also announced to join the government middle school's name with Acharya Shree Bhikshu so that the everlasting memory of Acharya Bhikshu remains in each and every children's heart and everyone who comes to Siriyari. She also gave assurance from the government to make this powerful place into a well recognized tourist place.The people of rural areas and thousands of people present at the function praised the announcement made by the Chief Minister. The president of Mahasabha, Shri Surendra Choradia, The president of Acharya Bhikshu Samadhi Sthal Sansthan, Shri Surendra Surana, Shri Mahavir Bambori, Shri Bharat Gadiya, Shri Pawan Chopra, Shri Mukanchand Mehata, Shri Kishan Mevade and many respected persons expressed their happiness over the announcement. News Courtsy:Terapanth Media Information Center, Siriyari.

BYPASS SURGERY UNIT INSTALLED AT JAIN HOSPITAL IN CALCUTTA
Shri Jain Hospital and Research Centre at Howrah is a prominent medical facility in Howrah, catering to a large population of Calcutta and Howrah and near-by areas, providing all types of facilities at a very reasonable cost. Recently, a 'Heart Surgery unit', named "P. L. Kochar Institute of Cardiac Sciences" was inaugurated at this hospital with the support of many dedicated donours of Calcutta from Jain community. Shri Panna Lal Kochar has donated a sum of Rs. 51 lakhs for this unit and many others have offered expensive medical equipment for heart surgery, dialysis units etc. as well as cash donations. Shri Sri Chand Nahta, a prominent social worker and business-man is the President of the hospital. Trustee, Shri Sardar Mal Ji Kankaria informed that by-pass surgery will be carried out in this hospital just at a cost of Rs. 45,000, which will include all expenses.

NEW BOOKS

THE OXFORD DICTIONARY OF WORLD RELIGIONS (English), Ed. Prof. John Bowker, 2003 232 x 152 mm 1135 pp; Paperback Rs. 950, The Oxford Dictionary of World Religions is the most wide-ranging reference guide to all aspects of world religions past and present. With more than 8000 entries, it offers a wealth of unrivalled and unbiased authoritative detail on main religions, sects and cults, individuals, religious texts, beliefs and festivals, and sacred sites. General themes, such as prayer, confession, cosmology, art and architecture, music and dance, compare traditions across all faiths, and entries on abortion, just war, for example, engage with contemporary ethical issues. To order books please write to E-Mail : manish.modi@mtnl.net.in

Books written by Shri Rajendra Muni, disciple of Acharya Shri Devendra Muni., Published by Shri Tarak Guru Jain Granthalaya, Udaipur, Rajasthan.
1. Katha Kalash: Oct. 2003, Rs. 50/-, The book is a rich collection of stories adopted from Jain Agams, based on humanitarianism, austerity, folk culture and sacrifice and highly educative for younsters.
2. Kathalok: Dec. 2003, Rs. 50/-, Another book by the same author gives a raere collection of about 40 stories, all adopted from our Agamic literature. The stories though ancient, still hold great relevance at the present time and are highly useful to provide moral education to youngters and elders alike.

Books written by Shri Surendra Muni, disciple of Shri Rajendra Muni.
1. Mahaprabhu Mahavir: II Ed. 2003; Price: Rs. 200/-, This book by highly learned and devoted young saint, Shri Surendra Muni, goes to elaborately depict the life of Bhagwan Mahavir in a lucid style, showing in an exclusive manner, how he could achieve salvation through his progressive efforts of austerity and spiritual endeavours. Dr. Shiv Muni the Shwetambar Sthanakwasi Jain Acharya has offered his blessings to the author, Shri Ramesh Muni and Dr. Rajendra Muni have shown their appreciation for the devotion of the author and Dr. L.M. Singhvi has written a highly appreciative foreword for the book, lauding the scholarly and rare qualities possessed by him.

2. Dr. Rajendra Muni- Sadhana and Sarjana. Publisher same as above. Price: Rs. 100/-. The book is more of a biography of his guru Dr. rajendra Muni, detailing his qualities as a devoted saint, as a scholar, as a philosopher and a guide. His life-sketch prior to his diksha and after diksha all through this period on the path of self-renunciation, self-introspection and self-restraint, his contributions to Jain literature, a rich collection of his discourses, and his services to elevate people and motivate them to move on the path of religion.

3. Kshama Shikha: Yr. 2002 Rs. 100/-, It is a historical novel, main character of which is Rani Sohan Kunwar who establishes lofty ideals of forgiveness, humility and modesty through her practice of self-restraint, devotion and fidelity to her husband. The novel interestingly depicts the real image of emperor Akbar as a perverted, crooked and tortuous person, bent upon developing illicit relations with hindu ladies from princely states under his control.

4. Path Ke Deep (Lamps on the path): It is an useful collection of stories suitable for youngsters and elders alike.It is in two parts; (i) stories of the war field, meaning that entire life is like a war with our karma and how to attain victory over them (ii) stories of religious field, to explain how one can solve his problems in life and annihilate his karma in order to achieve enlightenment.

5. Sabhyata Ke Shikhar Par : 2002; Price: Rs. 100/- This book is a rich collection of poems relating to cultural and socual values and philosophy of life. It indicates the deep understanding of the Jain philosophy attained by the author and his expertise over presentation of his thoughts in poetrical form.

6. Uphar : The book is based on folk tale of Malwa region and presents it in the form of a novel, the objective being to eradicate corruption, indiscipline, favouritism, and other mal-practices from society and promote human values and achieve peace and tranquility.

7. Ma- Mujhe Bhi Jeene Do (I too have a right to live); This book is also a novel with a great message for the society. The story is based on the practice of killing babies by their mothers after birth, if they are girls. People, who indulge in such sinful acts, have to suffer for their mis-deeds. The theme of the book is that these can never be condoned even by the almighty.

Book written by Shri Rupendra Muni, disciple of Shri Rajendra Muni.
Dhyan -Bin ghan parat fuhar (Rain without clouds),
Publisher: Same as above. 2003; Price: Rs. 50/-
The book is the result of in-depth study and practice of spiritual endeavour, meditation and austerity by the author. Basic philosophies and types of meditation, Jain rituals and subjects like self-renunciation and purification of soul are discussed in the book.

ACHIEVEMENTS

EIGHT JAINS DECLARED SUCCESSFUL IN MAHARASHTRA STATE ELECTIONS
The names of eight Jain candidates who won their seats in recently concluded assembly elections in Maharashtra are:
Congress
1. Shri Prakash Awade from Ichalkaranji, Kolhapur District
2. "Chandrakant Chhajed from Bopodi (Pune)
3. "Rajendra Darda, Aurangabad
Independent
1. Shri Raju Shetty Alias Anna Devappa Shetty from Shirol, Kolhapur District
NCP
1. Shri Suresh Dada Jain from Jalgaon
Shivsena
1. Shri Rajendra Patni from Karanja
BJP
1.Shri Mangal Prabhat Lodha, Malabar Hills, Mumbai
2. Shri Chainsukh Sancheti from Malkapur, (Buldhana)

AHIMSA FOUNDATION OFFERS CONGRATULATIONS AND GOOD WISHES TO ALL THESE MEMBERS OF LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY

RAJ PAUL OSWAL, LUDHIANA, WINS GOLD MEDAL FOR STAMP COLLECTION
Ludhiana, October 7: Raj Paul Oswal, has won the gold medal for his stamps on Jainism, and the silver medal for his stamps on Mahatama Gandhi, at 'Dak Bharti 2004'. The national level contest was organised at Ahmedabad from October 1-3, and 87 philatelists from all over the country participated in it. Raj Paul, who is a member of the leading Oswal family of Ludhiana. Raj Paul, in his mid 60s, started collecting stamps at the age of 18, when he was studying abroad. The stamps on Jainism, which have brought him the gold medal, reflect various aspects of Jainism like truth, non-violence, Jain temples and pilgrimage centres, Jain art, Jain architecture, Jain Jewellery and Jain institutions.

MISCELLANEOUS

JAIN TIRTHANKAR STAMPS RELEASED FROM NIAGRA FAlls POST OFFICE
A Jain philatelist, Mr. Prakash Mody prepared a limited quantity of two special 'picture postage' stamps and a commemorative envelope. The stamps have the designs of two Tirthankars, but the picture of Mahavir Swami is not the one that is installed. The envelope has the photograph of the two Pratimajis of Parshwnath Bhagwan and Mahavir Swami and the Namokar Mantra in the centre. Regular cancellation from the Niagara Falls post office was obtained on Saturday, 2 October 2004. The special stamped envelope with cancellation and autographs of Shri Chitrabhanuji, Smt. Pramoda Chitrabhanu and Shri Naresh Shah can be sent as an attachment. Collectors will maintain the sanctity as the images of the Tirthankars are reproduced. Courtesy: Prakash Mody, E-Mail : mody@sympatico.ca

DELHI GOVT. DEFERS GHAZIPUR SLAUGHTER HOUSE PROJECT
It is heartening to hear that after a long opposition from opposition parties and religious institutions, slaughter house which was to be opened in Ghazipur is now to be opened at any other place. But still, the plan for opening is not cancelled. If not at Ghazipur, then may be at some other place, animals will be killed. That still is a sad news, but a matter of happiness that it is delayed. However, we must oppose the opening. Till then keep on forwarding this message to as many people you can. Your small step could save life of millions of animals. Courtesy: Saurabh Jain, 2nd year B.Tech student, IIT Delhi through E-Mail : jainnet@yahoogroups.com

BETEL-NUT CHEWERS WITH FAULTY GENE HAVE HIGHER RISK OF MOUTH CANCER
Some people who chew betel nut may be genetically more prone to mouth cancer, a new report in the British Journal of Cancer reveals. The nut of the betel or areca palm tree contains a mild, central nervous system stimulant, called arecoline. Chewing the nut on its own or with a mixture of tobacco, lime and betel leaf is a popular habit in Asian countries and among British Asians. While all betel chewers have an increased chance of developing mouth cancer, scientists believe the genetic make-up of a person is likely to influence their susceptibility to the disease. Researchers based in Taiwan looked at variations in a gene that protects cells from damage in male betel chewers. They found that men with mouth cancer often had a different version of a gene than those not affected by the disease. Their findings shed important light on how mouth cancer develops and why some men are more susceptible to the disease than others. Over 1,53,000 new cases of mouth cancer are diagnosed in Asia each year. It accounts for up to 50 per cent of malignant tumors in some South Asian countries due to the popularity of betel chewing.

HOME MINISTER SHIV RAJ PATIL ASSURES MINORITY STATUS TO JAINS
Shri Shiv Raj Patil, Ministry of Home Affairs in the Government of India has assured a delegation of Jain community that necessary action would soon be taken in the matter of declaring minority status to Jain community in the whole country according to the directive received from the Supreme Court of India. The delegation was led by Shri Nirmal Kumar Sethi, President of All India Digambar Maha Sabha. Other members in the delegation included S.Shri Roop Chand Kataria, Paras Das Jain, Sripal Jain, Pavan Jain and Dr. Trilok Chand Kothari.The delegates drew attention of the Home Minister to the orders of Supreme Court dated 29th July, 2004 for taking decision to declare Jains as a minority on all India basis within a period of four months. The representatives of the Maha Sabha are now planning to meet Mrs. Sonia Gandhi for the same purpose.

CHANDRASWAMI (JAIN) ACQUITTED IN ST KITTS CASE
Fourteenyear-long legal battle, with a Special Court here today acquitted Chandraswami in the case in St. Kitts case. Former Prime Minister, P.V. Narasimha Rao was earlier discharged in the same case by the Court. The case related to alleged "forging" of certain bank documents to show that former Prime Minister V.P. Singh's son Ajay Singh had an illegal account with First Trust Corporation Bank in St Kitts island with a deposit of $21 million in 1986. Acquitting Chandraswami, Special Judge Dinesh Dayal said "false attestation" of the said documents by then Indian Consul General in New York, Deepak Sen Gupta and his deputy, R.K. Rai was the main source of the forgery.

"The false attestation of the documents by such senior officers, resulted in giving a colour of authenticity to the whole story. We now know that the documents were forged and the statements (regarding bank account) were false", said the court, which could not find any evidence that Chandraswami had participated in the forgery.In fact, the CBI had not been able to procure the originals of the "forged documents" and had proceeded with the trial in the politically-sensitive case on the basis of photocopies of the papers.The CBI, which had registered the FIR in 1990 after the V.P. Singh government came to power, had alleged that the conspiracy was "hatched" to tarnish the image of Mr V.P. Singh, as he had emerged a major challenge to Rajiv Gandhi.

REGRETTABLE

IDOLS STOLEN FROM DIGAMBER JAIN TEMPLE OF UDHAM SINGH NAGAR
Oct 19, At least five idols worth crores of rupees in the international market were stolen from a Jain temple in Kashipur area of Udham Singh Nagar district. The theft of the 'asthadhatu' idols from Sri Parshvanath Digambar Jain temple came to light when devotees went to offer prayers. The ornaments and canopies of the idols made of gold and silver were also found missing, police said.

SANDHYA JAIN MUDERED BY NEPHEW VINEET
An arrest in New Delhi has uncovered a murder in Mumbai. The Delhi police nabbed Vineet (19). In the course of routine police interrogation, he admitted that he had murdered his aunt Sandhya Jain in Colaba on October 17, dumped the body in a sack outside Dadar (east) railway station and left for Delhi. Meanwhile, the Matunga police in Mumbai had recovered the body outside Dadar railway station the same day. A post-mortem was done and victim's age inferred as 25. Her husband, Mahendra Jain is reported missing by his wife since November last year at the Colaba police station.

FROM THE READERS
Question- What are the 28 essential attributes necessary for a Digambar saint.- Pierre AMIEL from France E-Mail : amiel.pierre@club-internet.fr
Answer - The 28 primary attributes to be fulfilled by a Digambar saint:
A. Five mahavrats: (i) Ahimsa (non-violence), (ii) Satya (Truth), (iii) Achaurya (Non-stealing), (iv) Brahmcharya (Celibacy) and (v) Aparigraha (non-possession).
B. Five Samiti: (i) Moving outside only in broad day-light.
(ii) Speaking only for the good of listener and with kindness.
(iii) Accepting food (including water or any other eatable) only once in a day at the house of a layman, if he offers it with respect, avoiding certain faults or acts of guilt. (Dosh).
(iv) Exercising full care while using Kamandal (a vessel containing water only for washing purposes) and pichhi (a wiper made of peacock feathers.)
(v) Passing urine and stools at a place which will not hurt or offend any body.
C. Five acts to control activity of five indriya (seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling and touching).
D. Six essentials: (i) Performing Samayik every day.
(ii) Praying Tirthankars every day.
(iii) Purifying the acts of guilt (dosh) being caused due to neglience.
(iv) Rejecting the use of any unsuitable materials in thought, action or body, which may give rise to acts of guilt in future.
(v) Purification of the acts of guilt already caused in the past.
(vi) Performing austerity by doing Karyotsarg (an activity of Yoga) in a prescribed manner.
E. Not taking bath (Only the laymen (Sravak) clean their body by wiping with a wet towel)
F. Not to brush or clean teeth (Only after taking food, they can rinse the mouth).
G. Sleeping on bare floor. During winter, use of dry grass to cover the body is permitted.
H. Taking food only in standing position as offered by the layman or his wife in an appropriate manner, as prescribed in the scriptures.
I. Taking food only once in a day. (Usually saints accept meals only in the forenoon)
J. Not using any sort of clothing or covering at any time or any season.
K. Removing hair by pulling out (Kesh-loach), usually once or twice a year.

All these attributes total up to 28 in number. These are supposed to of primary nature and there are many other minor attributes, which are also to be followed by Digambar saints. (Saints who are yet to be initiated, follow a different code). In case of Shwetambar saints, however, the routine is not so tough, it is rather slack. The degree of slackness varies from one sub-sect to another and it is increasing in some cases. Some people feel that with the change of times, changes in the routine of saints have to be accepted but others are yet very rigid. For example, some saints and nuns are now using vehicles to enable faster movement, some are even going abroad, and so on. Prakash Lall Jain, Editor, E-Mail : ahimsatimes@jainsamaj.org.

READER'S VIEWS
PARASNATH GONE INTO THE HANDS OF GOVERNMENT - From: Mr. Pravin Shah, Newyork, I have received about 30 positive supporting responses from Sadharmiks for the subject matter including my email to all about "Parasnath (Sametshikharji) Gone In Hands of Government' when I emailed this News to all when it flashed in Indian News paper on Aug. 25,04. In addition to email responses, I have been receiving several supporting phone calls from across North America. All these responses are Eye Opener. Our Sadharmiks worried about, have expressed their different views as what shall be done for achieving unity. A wake up call has come for us (Jains) at this critical juncture now. If we will not work united here and every where, the very survival of one of the oldest or (may be) oldest religion will be in real danger. What legacy we would be leaving behind for our coming generations? If some thing goes wrong because of our aham and ego, future generations will not forgive/pardon us. But there are some opposing forces around honest leaders, Gurus and monks causing confusion in them so they (leaders,Gurus, monks) may not know as how and when to start for Unity. Are they really true Jains? Some of the responses blame that visiting and resident Pundits/Scholars, being interested in their self interests, are some what partially responsible for our disunity. Following are the some of the responses about Scholars and Pundits.

"Many scholars and Pundits coming for a short visit to North America may have promoted personal or sectarian agenda. However, we must not make a mistake of lumping all of them in one basket. Many "So called" scholars in North America too do the same harm to unity. So, the issue really is not that of "Those from India" versus "Those resident in NA". The issue is that of vision. Jains can not afford to live in the past." Some scholars/Pundits are money-minded, sectarian/cult minded and rather interested in spreading sectarian/cult's and their own personal messages side tracking Bhagwan Mahavir's message. They promote their own ideology, beliefs etc. But an exception happened in Jain center of America, New York, which I shall bring to your knowledge. During Sthanakvasi Paryusana in August,04, Muni Shri Bhuvanshriji (of Jaipur) talked about unity on last two consecutive days. What happened do you know? He was reprimanded next day for speaking too much on unity (of all sectors). The organizer of that Sthanakvasi Paryusana boasted for having reprimanded Guruji.

Muni Shri Jinchandraji who was on his way to Chicago for Paryusana (and who might knew of disunity in America and in New York) openly wept/cried on podium/stage on two occasions during his Vyakhan (lecture), arranged by Jain Center of America, New York on Sept.5, 2004. I was taken a back to see him crying openly and tears rolling on his cheeks for the first time. I heard the same story which happened at Chicago during Paryusana. I came to know that after JAINA meeting at Niagara Falls. As a Chair Person of JAINA, Shri V.R. Gandhi Scholarship and as a Member of WJC (World Jain Council)/JAINA and Shri V.R. Gandhi Memorial Committee, I had gone to Niagara Falls, Canada to attend JAINA meeting and Pratishtha of Jain Temple (included in Shiv Mandir). There was some problem. But by grace of Tirthankar Bhagwans whole event passed gracefully. Problem was amicably resolved by JAINA with the help of Guruji Shri Chitrabhanuji. We have not yet learnt our lessons from recent Parasnath (Hill) and Girnar events. If we will not unite here and else where, we will meet the same fate as of Parasnathji, Girnar, Keshariyaji, Badrinathji, (Tirupatiji?).

Some have expressed their opinion that our disunity and other issues shall be addressed through YJA, YJP and JAINA Long Range Planning Committee (as per one of the objectives JAINA was found for) and by Local Jain Sanghs/Centers. They shall form UNITY Committee comprising of 2 members from each sector.
Please send your comments To JAINA, JAINA Teachers and to your Jain Center Officials and if you want, you can mark copy to me. Pravin C. Shah, New York E-Mail: pravincshah2k@yahoo.com Ph.No. 5162488265.

AHIMSA TIMES INVITES NEWS CORRESPONDENTS FOR HELPING IN NEWS COLLECTION
We invite Jain volunteers from different geographical area to join the team of Ahimsa Times Correspondents. The interested readers may send their profile and a photograph to The Editor at E-Mail: ahimsa@jainsamaj.org.

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