Parents and our grand parents often say that doing a Tirth
Yatra is very fruitful and valuable in life. But what exactly
is a Tirth? Which place should be called a Tirth and which
not? are certain questions which we might have been looking
an answer for.
I asked about this from various learned people, sadhvi sri
Praguna shri, sadhvi sri Priyadharma, above all gachadipati
sri sri RatnakarSuri Ji, and they explained it in a very easy
and elaborated way.
Tirth is a place which can be a medium of a person to attain
peace and mukti.
The word TIRTH means a pilgrimage. And Tirthankar
establisher of tirth.
Ø Tirthankars has five
auspicious occasions in his life time, namely,
Entering into the womb of mother
Dikha (complete detachment with worldly things)
Keval Gyan (ultimate knowledge)
Nirvan (freedom from the cycle of birth and re-birth)
Ø Out of these five,
even if a single one occurs at any one place, then that place
becomes a pilgrimage or a TIRTH in other words.
For example Sametshikhar, where 20 Tirthankars got
Palitana, Pavapuri, Girnar ji, Ashtapadh, and many more
Ø Apart from Tirthankar,
if any body else gets Keval Gyan and when he departs
his body in any area, than that area or city becomes a tirth
Ø If at any place, a
temple has been made and that temple has become as old as
100 years, then this place or city will also be called a Tirth
Tirth can be divided into two categories:
Jangam Tirth a moving Sadhu or Sadhvi are believed
to be Tirth in themselves. In Jainism they have been also
given the place of tirth. But because they keep on moving
from one place to another, they are called Jangam Tirth.
A sadhu or a Sadhvi should be respected and worshiped in a
similar way as that done in a Tirth. It is the Bana
which they wear which is worshiped just like a idol
in a tirth.
As a Tirth has that idol which people go and worship and which
is the symbol of God, similarly the Sadhu or Sadhvi has that
bana which is worshiped and which represents great
religion. So, Sadhu and Sadhvis are also tirth in themselves.
Thavar Tirth : A place of worship which remains still
and does not move anywhere is Thavar Tirth. Thavar Tirth is
supposed to be established by any Tirthankar. So, a place
where any of the above mentioned five things happen is a Thavar
Tirth. Like for example, Palitana, Sammetshikhar, Girnar ji,
Some of the major Tirths of Jains are:
Ashtapad (Kailash) which is missing somewhere
in Kailash hills.
Palitana situated in Gujrat, on the hill top and has
approximately 3500 swetamber mandirs
Sammetshikhar where 20 Tirthankaras got Niran.
Girnar Ji in gujrat, about 4-5 km from Junagarh,
22nd Tirthankar (Neminath ji) took Diksha, keval and Nirvan
from this palce.
Pavapuri In Patna, here our last Tirthankar
(Mahavir Swami ji) got nirvan.
Hastinapur situated in Merut in Uttar Pradesh,
this place has great importance as three of our tirthankaras
(Shanti Nath, Kuntunath, Aranath ji) took birth, diksha, got
keval gyan and Nirvan from here. 19th Tirthankar had his Samosaran
here, also Rishabh Dev completed his year long fast at this
And many more are covered in our Tirth Darshan section.
Jainism is an ancient religious and philosophical tradition
of India. Jains are the sixth large religious community of
India. There are more than three million Indian Jains. As
a wealthy religious community, Jains have had a powerful influence
on the life and the history of the Indian subcontinent. The
Jain religion takes its name from the Jina (meaning victor
or conqueror), a title given to 24 great teachers called Tirthankaras
(ford-makers). These teachers demonstrated and taught the
Jain path of purity and peace which leads to the highest spiritual
liberation. Wealthy Jains have made major contribution to
education and to art in India. Jain temples are among some
of the most beautiful in India. These temples are often the
focus of pilgrimages, particularly in the states or Rajasthan,
Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madya Pradesh, and Karnataka in western
Jain mandir are of two types :
Shikhar badh mandir : A temple that has been constructed
from the roots and not converted. Such temples should always
be constructed by the contribution of the entire society and
not individually. There is a Dosh attached with these kinds
of mandir if rays of the sun at 11:00 am to 2:30 pm
if the shadow of this temple is there on any house then this
house and its members will have some problems. But if the
shadow falls on any other time then there is no problem.
There are two categories in these types of temples :
Sidha Pramatma Mandir (temple of those lords who have become
Siddha attained complete freedom) : flag on Siddha
Pramatmas mandir is a tri color with Red in the center and
white on top and bottom. The statue inside this mandir is
alone and not surrounded by any other statues.
Arihant Pramatma Mandir (temple of Arihant) : flag on Arihant
Pramatmas mandir is a tri color with white in the center
and red on top and bottom. The statue of the lord inside is
not alone but surrounded by other statues.
Ghar mandir : temples made at home or home converted
to temple is Ghar mandir. There is no fault or Dosh of this
Jain temples have some features in common :
There is moolgubara (the area where
the lord sits in the temple) and on top of the moolgubara
is the flag just above the right shoulder of the lord to symbolize
that all the responsibility and weight of religion is on his
There is ample space before this moolgubara where all the
prayers are offered to the lord dravya pooja,
bhav pooja, etc. are done from here only. Chaitya wandana
is also done from here. All music, dance, bhajan, kirtans
are done here only and is known as Rang Mandap.
Inside the moolgubara Ang pooja is done.
There is a crown on the top of every
General rules followed by the Jains whenever they happen
to visit temple :
1. One should try to visit Mandir daily.
2. While entering the Mandir one should say Nissayhi
3. After that put a mark of purity chandan tika, on
4. To chaitya vandan if not possible bow towards
the lord and offer him ones prayers.
5. Mandir shoul be kept clean.
6. While entering into the temple one should forget about
the other three directions and concentrate only in the direction