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the Jain mathematician|Mahāvīra (mathematician)

Jain deity
24th ''Jain Tirthankara''

Ahimsā+, Anekantavada+, Syadavada, Aparigraha+
Asadh Sud 6
Chaitra+ Sud 13
Kartik+ Vad 10
Vaisakh+ Sud 10
Asho+ Vad Amaas (Kartik+ Amavasya / Dipawali+)
Pawapuri+, Bihar+
72 years
Siddhayini or Siddhayika

'''Mahāvīra''', also known as '''Vardhamāna''', was the twenty-fourth and last ''tirthankara+''. In Jainism+, a ''tirthankara'' (maker of the river crossing) is an omniscient+ teacher who preaches the ''dharma+'' (righteous path) and builds a ford across the ocean of rebirth and transmigration. Twenty-four tirthankara grace each half of the cosmic time cycle+. Mahāvīra was the last tirthankara of ''avasarpani'' (present descending phase).
Mahavira was born into a royal family in what is now Bihar+, India+. At the age of 30, he left his home in pursuit of spiritual awakening. He abandoned all the worldly things including his clothes and became a Jain monk+. Zimmer|1953|p=222 Mahavira's philosophy has eight cardinal (law of trust) principles, three metaphysical (''dravya+'', ''jiva+'' and ''ajiva+''), and five ethical. The objective is to elevate the quality of life.

Mahavira's childhood name was ''Vardhamana'', which means ''the one who grows'', because of the increased prosperity in the kingdom at the time of his birth. Zimmer|1953|p=223

Buddhist+ texts refer to Mahavira as ''Nigaṇṭha Jñātaputta''. Nigaṇṭha means "without knot, tie, or string" and Jñātaputta (son of ''Natas''), referred to his clan of origin ''Jñāta'' or ''Naya'' (Prakrit+). He is also known as Sramana.

Jaina traditions date Mahavira as living from 599 BC to 527 BC. first=Pranava K|last=Chaudhary|url=|title=Row over Mahavira's birthplace|publisher=The Times Of India+|date=14 October 2003

Although there is reasonable evidence that Parshvanatha+, predecessor of Mahavira was a historical figure, Mahavira is still sometimes referred to as the founder of Jainism. On this, famous Indologist Heinrich Zimmer+ noted:

Mahavira's teachings form the basis for Jain texts. Jain texts prescribe five major vows (''vratas'') that both ascetics and householders have to follow. These are five ethical principles that were preached by Mahavira:
# Ahimsa+ (Non Violence+) - Mahavira taught that every living being has sanctity and dignity of its own and it should be respected just like we expect our own sanctity and dignity to be respected. In simple words, we should show maximum possible kindness to every living being.
# Satya+ or truthfulness which leads to harmony in society. One should speak truth and respect right of property of each other's in society. One should be true to his own thoughts, words and deeds to create mutual atmosphere of confidence in society.
# Asteya+ or non-stealing which states that one should not take anything if not properly given.
# Brahmacharya+ or chastity which stresses steady but determined restraint over yearning for sensual pleasures.
# Aparigraha+ (Non-possession+) - non-attachment to both inner possessions (like liking, disliking) and external possessions (like property).

Mahavira also taught that pursuit of pleasure is an endless game, so we should train our minds to curb individual cravings and passions. That way one does achieve equanimity of mind, mental poise and spiritual balance. One should voluntarily limit acquisition of property as a community virtue which results in social justice and fair distribution of utility commodities. The strong and the rich should not try to suppress the weak and the poor by acquiring limitless property which results in unfair distribution of wealth in society and hence poverty. Attempting to enforce these five qualities by an external and legal authority leads to hypocrisy or secret criminal tendencies. So the individual or society should exercise self-restraint to achieve social peace, security and an enlightened society.

Another fundamental teaching of Mahavira was Anekantavada+ i.e., pluralism and multiplicity of viewpoints. Mahāvīra employed anekānta extensively to explain the Jain philosophical concepts. Taking a relativistic viewpoint, Mahāvīra is said to have explained the nature of the soul as both permanent from the point of view of underlying substance (''nīshyānay''), and temporary, from the point of view of its modes and modification.

Mahavira was born into the royal Kshatriya+ family of King Siddhartha+ and Queen Trishala+ (sister of King Chetaka of Vaishali+). Dundas|2002|p=25 After his birth, anointment and consecration (''abhisheka''), carried out by Indra+ on Mount Meru+, the axis of the central cosmic contingent of Jambudvipa+, he was given the name ''Vardhmana''.

As the son of a king, Mahavira had all luxuries of life at his disposal. According to the second chapter of Acharanga+, both his parents were followers of Parshvanatha+ and lay devotees of Jain ascetics+. Jain traditions are not unanimous about his marital state. According to Digambara+ tradition, Mahavira's parents desired that he should get married to ''Yashoda'' but Mahavira refused to marry. According to Svetambara tradition, he was married young to Yashoda and had one daughter, Priyadarshana.

At the age of 30, Mahavira abandoned all the comforts of royal life and left his home and family to live an ascetic life in the pursuit of spiritual awakening. He went into a park called Sandavana in the surroundings of Kundalpur+. He underwent severe penances, meditated under the Ashoka tree+ and went without clothes. There is graphic description of hardships and humiliation he faced in the ''Acharanga Sutra+''. In the eastern part of Bengal+ he suffered great distress. Boys pelted him with stones, people often humiliated him.

According to Kalpa Sūtra+ (122), Mahavira spent forty-two monsoons of his ascetic life at Astikagrama, Champapuri+, Prstichampa, Vaishali+, Vanijagrama, Nalanda+, Mithila+, Bhadrika, Alabhika, Panitabhumi, Shravasti+ and Pawapuri+.

After twelve and a half years of rigorous penance, i.e. at the age of forty-three, Mahavira achieved the state of ''Kevala Jnana+''. ''Kevala'' means "isolation-integration" and ''Jnana'' means knowledge. This implies omniscience and release from earthly bondage-corresponding to the "enlightenment" (bodhi) of the Buddhas. This happened under a Sala-tree on the banks of the river Rjupalika (today Barakar) near a place called Jrmbhikagrama. The ''Acharanga sutra'' describes Mahavira as all-seeing. The ''Sutrakritanga+'' elaborates the concept as all-knowing and provides details of other qualities of Mahavira.

For a period of 30 years after omniscience, Mahavira traveled far and wide in India to teach his philosophy. According to the tradition, Mahavira had 14,000 ascetics, 36,000 nuns, 159,000 sravakas (laymen) and 318,000 sravikas (laywomen) as his followers. Some of the royal followers included King Srenika (popularly known as Bimbisara+) of Magadha+, Kunika of Anga+ and Chetaka+ of Videha+.

According to Jain texts+, Mahavira attained ''moksha'', i.e. his soul is believed to have become Siddha (soul at its purest form), aged seventy-two at the town of Pawapuri+ (now in Bihar+). von Glasenapp|1999|p=328 Today, a Jain temple+, called ''Jal Mandir'' stands at the place where Mahavira is believed to have attained ''moksha''.

Mahavira's previous births are discussed in Jain texts such as the ''Tri-shashti-shalaka-purusha-charitra'' and Jinasena+'s Mahapurana+. While a soul undergoes countless reincarnations in transmigratory cycle of saṃsāra+, the births of a Tirthankara+ are reckoned from the time he determined the causes of karma+ and developed the Ratnatraya+. Jain texts discuss twenty-six births of Mahavira prior to his incarnation as a Tirthankara+. Dundas|2002|p=21

There are various Jain texts like ''Kalpa Sūtra+'' that describe the life of Mahavira. The first Sanskrit biography of Mahavira was ''Vardhamacharitra'' by Asaga+ in 853 CE.

Mahavira's teachings influenced many personalities. Mahatma Gandhi+ was greatly influenced by Mahavira and said, "Bhagwan Mahavira is sure to be respected as the highest authority on Ahimsa+. If anyone has practiced to the fullest extent and has propagated most the doctrine of Ahimsa, it was Lord Mahavira."

A major event is associated with the 2500th anniversary of Nirvana of Mahavira in the year 1974. In this context, Padmanabh Jaini+ writes

* ''Svayambhustotra'' by Acharya ''Samantabhadra+'' is the adoration of twenty-four tirthankaras. Its eight slokas (aphorism+s) adore the qualities of ''Vardhamana Mahāvīra''. One such ''sloka'' is:
* ''Yuktyanusasana'' by ''Acharya Samantabhadra''- It is a poetic work consisting of Sixty-four verses in praise of ''Vardhamāna Mahāvīra''
* ''Mahaveerashtak Stotra'' composed by Jain Poet Bhagchand.

Mahavira is usually depicted in a sitting or standing meditative posture with a symbol of a lion under him. Zimmer|1953|p=225 The emblem of Mahavira is "Lion". The emblem is usually carved, right below the legs of the ''tirthankara''. Like all ''tirthankaras'', Mahavira is depicted having Shrivatsa+.

Temples dedicated to Mahavira :-
*Tirumalai Jain temple+, Thiruvannamalai+
*Shri Mahavirji+ Temple, Karauli+, Rajasthan+
*Kulpakji+ Jain temple
*Pawapuri+ Jain temple
*Ahinsa Sthal+, Delhi

Mahavira: The Hero of Nonviolence+ is an illustrated children’s story based upon the life of a teacher of the Jain faith.

* Arihant (Jainism)+
* God in Jainism+
* History of Jainism+
* Timeline of Jainism+
* Siddhashila+
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* year=2015|publisher=Vikalp Printers|isbn=978-81-903639-7-6|url=|quote=Non-Copyright
* ''Note: ISBN refers to the UK:Routledge (2001) reprint. URL is the scan version of the original 1884 reprint''
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* wikiquote-inline:

Jainism topics:

Mahavira+ Mahāvīra, also known as Vardhamāna, was the twenty-fourth and last tirthankara. In Jainism, a tirthankara (maker of the river crossing) is an omniscient teacher who preaches the dharma (righteous path) and builds a ford across the ocean of rebirth and transmigration.
Mahavira Hall+ A Mahāvīra Hall or Hall of Mahāvīra (Chinese: 大雄寶殿; pinyin: Dàxióngbǎodiàn; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Tōa--hiông-pó-tiān; literally: "Hall of the Great Hero") is the main building of a traditional temple complex in East Asian Buddhism, where Gautama Buddha and other buddhas and bodhisattvas are enshrined.
 Mahaviracharita+ Not to be confused with Hemachandra's Jain work about Mahavira
 Mahāvīra (mathematician)+ Mahāvīra (or Mahaviracharya, "Mahavira the Teacher") was a 9th-century Jain mathematician from Mysore, India.
 Vira Nirvana Samvat+ The Vira Nirvana Samvat (era) is a calendar era beginning on 15 October 527 BCE. It commemorates the nirvana of Mahavira, the 24th Jain Tirthankara.
Mahavir Jayanti+ Mahavir Jayanti, also known as Mahavir Janma Kalyanak, is the most important religious holiday for Jains.
 Mahavira TV+ Mahavira TV is an Hindi-language 24/7 Hindu television channel, owned by Mahavira Limted India.
Mahavira: The Hero of Nonviolence+ Mahavira: The Hero of Nonviolence is an illustrated children’s story based upon the life of a teacher of the Jain faith.
 Barsine (moth)+ Barsine is a genus of moth in the family Arctiidae.
 Mahavira (disambiguation)+ Mahavira may refer to: