Mahavir Jayanti – an auspicious festival of Jainism and its history, legend, significance and celebration!

An auspicious festival Mahavir Jayanti is one of the holy festival of Jainism religion, which is celebrated on the birth of 24th Tirthankara known as Lord Mahavira or Vardhamana. Generally, it marks the birth anniversary of Lord Mahavir, the 24th Tirthankar. Lord Mahavira or Vardhamana was the last spiritual leader of Jainism. Jains Community across the world celebrate this day with great grandeur and enthusiasm by reading religious rhymes and donating goods to needy people.

Mahavir Jayanti’s Celebration Time:

As per the Gregorian Calendar, Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated in the month of March or April.  In the 2021 the auspicious day is being celebrated on April 25.

Mahavir Jayanti’s Celebration:

The Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated by Jain community with great fervor and dedication. On this holy festival, the idol of Lord Mahavir is carried out on a chariot, in a procession called Rath Yatra. All participated people recite religious rhymes known as Stavans during the Rath Yatra. The abhisheka of statues of Mahavir is carried out with great fervor. The devoted members of Jain community engage in various charitable acts, prayers, worship and fasts. All followers visit Lord Mahavir’s temples and offer prayers. Lectures by monks and nuns are held in temples to preach the path of virtue as defined by Jainism. The rallies are also organized to preach Lord Mahavir’s message of Ahiṃsā (non-violence).

History and Legend of Mahavir Jayanti’s Celebration:

Lord Mahavir swami was born into Ikshvaku dynasty as the son of King Siddhartha of Kundagrama and Queen Trishala. During her pregnancy, Trishala was believed to have had a number of auspicious dreams, all indicating the coming of a great soul. Digambara sect of Jainism holds that the mother saw sixteen dreams, which were interpreted by the King Siddhartha.

As per the Svetambara sect, the total number of auspicious dreams is fourteen. It is revealed that when Queen Trishala gave birth to Mahavir, Indra, the head of heavenly beings (devas) performed a ritual called abhisheka on Sumeru Parvat, this being the second of five auspicious events (Panch Kalyanakas), said to occur in the life of all Tirthankaras.

The 24th Tirthankara of Jainism Lord Mahavira as Vardhamana was born in the 6th century BCE in Bihar. He was born on the 13th day of the bright half of the moon, in Chaitra month. Most modern historians consider Kundagram (which is today’s Kundalpur in Champaran district of Bihar) as his birthplace.

Mahavir was called ‘Vardhaman’, meaning “One who grows”, because of the increased prosperity in the kingdom at the time of his birth. In Vasokund, Mahavir is respected by the villagers. A place called Ahalya bhumi has not been cultivated for hundreds of years by the family that owns it, as it is considered to be the birthplace of Mahavir.

Lord Mahavira had a high curiosity in meditation and in Jainism. At the age of 30 he took the spiritual path and left his throne to practice Jainism.

The observance of Lord Mahavira:

1. Ahimsa (Non-Violence): He was a firm believer that people should follow the path of non-violence.

2. Satya (Truth): He believed in saying the truth and being truthful.

3. Asteya (Non-Stealing): He believed that people should be honest and they should not steal things.

4. Brahmacharya (chastity): He believed in not indulging in sensual pleasures.

5. Aparigraha (non-attachment): He believed that people should not attach to non-material things

Upcoming Happy Mahavir Jayanti Celebration Date:

2021       Sun        25 Apr   Mahavir Jayanti Gazetted Holiday
2022       Thu        14 Apr   Mahavir Jayanti Gazetted Holiday
2023       Tue        4 Apr     Mahavir Jayanti Gazetted Holiday
2024       Sun        21 Apr   Mahavir Jayanti Gazetted Holiday
2025       Thu        10 Apr   Mahavir Jayanti Gazetted Holiday

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