Jain World
Sub-Categories of Passions

Jainism  -  Respect For All Life

The birth of Jainism
Mahavira the Path-Maker
The Enlightenment
The Rise of Jainism
  The Two Sects
  The Scriptures
  Rise and Fall
  Jain Beliefs-The Universe
  The Soul
  Karma and Rebirth
  The way of Salvation
  The Everyday Life of a Jain
  The Life of an Ascetic
  Ways of Worship
  Temples and Domestic Shrines
  Ninian Smart




Jain temples are filled with images of the Tirthankaras;

`Contemplating the form of the passionless Lord in a Jaina temple, the mind becomes filled automatically with a sentiment of renunciation...  The mind is purified by the contemplation and worship of the Tirthankaras.�

Every day devout Jains rise before dawn and, with rosary of 108 beads in hand, invoke the Five Great Beings, bowing, with folded hands to east, north, west and south.

As a Jain worshiper approaches the temple, he leaves his shoes and socks outside.  At the porch he puts a saffron mark on his brow and repeats the Nissahi (which enables him to put aside all sin and care).  Inside, he comes to the shrine and bids for the right to wash the principal Tirthankara image.  Removing the jewels and old flowers, he washes it with water, milk and five nectars.  When it has dried, he then rubs it over and marks it with liquid saffron in fourteen places, from head to toe.  Meanwhile, verses are sung in its praise, incense and lamps waved at the threshold and an offering of rice placed on a table before the door.  Finally, the worshiper performs spiritual worship, prostrating himself three times before the image, recalling the virtues of the Tirthankara, singing his praises, walking backwards to the door as he repeats the Avassahi (which allows him to engage in worldly pursuits again), and with hands together bowing out.