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the Jain mathematician|Mahāvīra (mathematician)


599 BCE
527 BCE
twenty-fourth tirthankara+

'''Mahavira''' (599 BCE–527 BCE), also known as '''Vardhamana''', was the twenty-fourth and last ''tirthankara+'' of Jainism+. Therefore, although Mahavira is widely regarded as the founder of Jainism, he is more properly regarded as a reformer of Jainism.

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 (Diksha). For the next twelve and a half years he practiced intense meditation and severe penance, after which he achieved Kevala Jnana+ or enlightenment. He travelled all over Bharata+ (which was larger than today's India+) for the next thirty years to teach his philosophy which is based on ahimsa+, satya+, asteya+, brahmacharya+ and aparigraha+. Mahavira attained nirvana+ at the age of 72.

Mahavira was born into a royal family of Kshatriyas. Historians have identified three places in Bihar as his possible birthplace: Kundigram in Vaishali district+, Lachhuar in Jamui+ and Kundalpur in Nalanda+. Most modern historians agree that Basokund was his birthplace. Traditionally, Kundalapura in the ancient city of Vaishali+ is regarded as his birthplace; however, its location remains unidentified.

According to Jainism, Mahavira was born in 599 BCE. Some historians identify Mahavira as a junior contemporary of Gautama Buddha+, leaving his year of birth ambiguous, Mahavira was born into the royal family of King Siddartha of Kundalapura+ and Queen Trishala+, sister of King Chetaka of Vaishali. Mahavira has many other titles and epithets, including Vira, Sanmati and Ñataputta. The ancient texts refer to Mahavira as ''Ñataputta'' (son of ''Natas''). This referred to his clan of origin, the ''Ñatta''.

Jain traditions are not unanimous about his marital state. According to one tradition (Digamber) he was celibate and according to another (Shwetamber) he was married young to Yashoda and had one daughter, Priyadarshana.

According to Jainism, Mahavira attained moksha+ or Salvation in 527 BCE. Some Western scholars suggests that this date would have been around 425 BCE.

For the next 30 years Mahavira travelled far and wide in India to teach his philosophy. His philosophy has eight cardinal (law of trust) principles and three metaphysical and five ethical. The objective is to elevate the quality of life. Ahimsa or non-violence is the first of five ethical principles. Mahavira taught that every living being has sanctity and dignity of its own and it should be respected just like we expect to respect our own sanctity and dignity. In simple words, we should show maximum possible kindness to every living being. The second principle is Satya or truthfulness which leads to good neighborliness 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. Third principle is Asteya or non-stealing which state that one should not take anything if not properly given. Fourth principle is Bramhacharya or chastity which stress steady but determined restraint over yearning for sensual or sexual pleasures. Fifth and final principle is Aparigraha or non-possession, non-attachment which requires complete detachment from people, places and material property.

Mahavira 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-restrain to achieve social peace, security and an enlightened society.

Mahavira is said to have died in Doora, Agra+, Uttar Pradesh.
He died in 527 B.C. at the age of 72. His followers believe his purified soul left the body and achieved complete liberation i.e., attained Nirvana+ or Moksha. He was cremated at Pawapuri+ where today stands a Jain temple named Jalmandir.

Mahavira is usually depicted in a sitting or standing meditative posture with a symbol of a lion under him.

At the age of 30, Mahavira abandoned all the comforts of royal life and left his home and family to live ascetic life for spiritual awakening. He underwent severe penances, even without clothes. There is graphic description of hardships and humiliation he faced in the ''Acaranga Sūtra''. In the eastern part of Bengal+ he suffered great distress. Boys pelted him with stones, people often humiliated him.

The Kalpa Sūtra gives a detailed account of his ascetic life:

After twelve and a half years of rigorous penance he achieved kevalajñana. i.e., realization of perfect perception, knowledge, power, and bliss. The ''Acharangasutra'' describes Mahavira as all-seeing. The ''Sutrakritanga+'' elaborates the concept as all-knowing and provides details of other qualities of Mahavira.

Mahavira’s previous births are discussed in Jain texts such as the ''Trisastisalakapurusa 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.

There are various Jain texts describing the life of Mahavira. The most notable of them is the ''Kalpa Sūtra'' of Bhadrabahu+. The first Sanskrit biography of Mahavira was ''Vardhamacharitra'' by Asaga+ in 853 CE.

Mahavira was grandson of the first ''tirthankara'', Rishabha+, according to Jain legends. He was earlier born as the heretical grandson of Rishabha known as Marichi. Nagārāja|2003|p=127


|title=Mahavira: The Hero of Nonviolence
|publisher=World Wisdom, Incorporated
|title=Non-violence and the other A composite theory of multiplism, heterology and heteronomy drawn from jainism and gandhi
|title=The Jains
|first=Helmuth Von
|title=Jainism: An Indian Religion of Salvation
|publisher=Motilal Banarsidass
|first=Kailash Chand
|title=Lord Mahāvīra and His Times
|publisher=Motilal Banarsidass
|title=Jain Temples of Rajasthan
|publisher=Abhinav Publications
|title=Agama and Tripitaka a Comparative Study of Lord Mahavira and Lord Buddha
|publisher=Concept Publishing Company
|title=History of Indian Literature: Buddhist and Jain Literature
|publisher=Motilal Banarsidass

Mahavira+ Mahavira (599 BCE–527 BCE), also known as Vardhamana, was the twenty-fourth and last tirthankara of Jainism.
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"), called daeungjeon (대웅전, 大雄殿) in Korean, is the main building of a traditional Chinese Buddhist temple complex, where the historical 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) originated on 15 October 527 BCE. It commemorates the nirvana of Mahavira, the 24th Jain Tirthankara.
 Barsine (moth)+ Barsine is a genus of moth in the family Arctiidae.
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.