History - Jainism and Buddhism(Download in PDF)
History - Jainism and Buddhism
The parents of Mahavira were Siddhartha, a Janatrika chief of Kundapura, and Trishala, a Kshatriya lady related to the ruling families of Vaishali and Magadha.
Mahavira married a princess named Yashoda.
Mahavira forsook the world at the age of thirty and roamed as a naked ascetic in several parts of eastern India and practiced severe penance for 12 years. Half of this time was spent with a mendicant (beggar) friar (brother) named Goshala who subsequently left him and became the leader of the Ajivika sect.
In the 13th year of penance, Mahavira attained the highest spiritual knowledge called Kevala-jnana, on the northern bank of river Rijupalika, outside Jrimbhikagrama, a little known locality in eastern India. He was now known as a Kevalin (omniscient), a Jina (conqueror) and Mahavira (the great hero).
Mahavira became the head of a sect called Nigranthas (free from Fretters), known in later times as Jains or followers of Jina (conqueror).
Mahavira died at Pava in south Bihar, after wandering for 35 years as a religious teacher, at the age of 72.
The Jains believe that Mahavira was not the founder of a new religious system, but the last of a long succession of 24 Tirthankars or “ford-makers across the stream of...