Apr 24, 2008

Jains in Solapur District

The Jains in Sholapur are numerically not important, but their socio-economic importance is quite out of proportion to their number. They constituted only 1.12 per cent of the total population in 1901 and in 1971 the constitute 0.81 per cent, i.e., about 21,008 of the total population of 22,53,840. Most of them are businessmen, traders, industrialists but some have attained literary fame and are also to be found among the liberal professions.

Jains take the name from being followers of the twenty-four Jainas (conquerors), the last two of whom were Parsvanatha and Mahavira who was also called Vardhamana. Mahavira's father and mother died when he was 28 and two years later he devoted himself to austerities which he continued for twelve and a half years, nearly eleven of which were spent in the different series of fasts. As a Digambara he went robeless and had no vessel but his hand. At last the bonds of karma were snapped like an old rope and he gained kevala, i.e., absolute knowledge or spiritual perfection and thus became an Arhat, i.e., worthy or Jina, i.e., conqueror. He went from place to place and taught his doctrine. Several eminent Brahmans became converts to Jainism. The greatest among them was Indrabhuti or Gautama who preached Mahavira's doctrine in the cities of Kaushambi and Rajagriha. Mahavira attained Nirvana at the age of 72 at Pawa in Bihar in B. C. 527. According to the well-attested traditional chronology the two royal clans Mallaki and Licchavi celebrated the occasion by a lamp festival which is annually observed as Divali even to this day.

Like Buddhists, Jainas reject the authority of the Vedas which they pronounce apochryphal and corrupt; they have their own scriptures called Parvas and Angas. As among Buddhists, confession is practised among Jainas. Great importance is attached to pilgrimage and the chaturmasa, that is, four months from Ashadha or July-August to Kariika or October-November in the year are given to intermittent fasting, the reading of sacred books, and meditation. They attach no religious importance to caste. Jainas like Buddhists are of two classes, yatis or ascetics and shravakas or hearers. The Jaina samgha (congregation or community) has a four-fold division; monks, nuns, lay-men and lay-women. Jainas, like Buddhists, admit no creator. According to them the world is eternal and they deny that any being could have been there as its creator. The Jina became perfect but he was not perfect at first. He is not his creator nor has he anything to do with worldly affairs. He is the God in the sense that he is spiritually perfect and as such he is an Ideal for the worldly people who are aspiring for spiritual perfection. Jainas worship twenty-four Tirthankaras or lords, of whom Vrishabha was the first. Parshvanatha the twenty-third and Mahavira the twenty-fourth. Their images have certain signs on the pedestal and have attendant deities on both sides.

On the whole Jainism is less opposed to Brahmanism than Buddhism is and admits, here and there, some of the Brahmanic deities, though it holds them inferior to their chovisi or twenty-four Tirthankaras.
Jainas name their children after their Tirthankaras or worthies of the present, past and future ages, after the parents of the arhats, after the pious and great men, and sometimes after Brahmanic gods and local deities. Like Hindus, Jain parents sometimes give their children mean names to avert early death, as Kallappa from Kallu (K) stone Kadappa from kad (K) forest, Dhondu from Dhonda (M) and Dagadu from dagad (M) stone.
Classes: Sholapur Jains are divided into Upadhyas or priests, Panchamas who are generally traders, Chaturthas who are generally husbandmen, Kasaras, or copper dealers, and Setavalas or cloth-sellers. With the spread of modern education these hereditary professions are getting changed. These classes eat together but do not inter-marry. Lately, however, some inter-marriages are taking place. Formerly the sect, it is reported, included barbers, washermen and many other castes that have now ceased to be Jainas. Properly speaking in certain areas, there is no separate priestly caste among the Jainas; the Upadhyas or priests are usually chosen from among the learned Panchamas or Chaturthas subject to the recognition of their principal swamis or head priests called Pattacharya Swamis.

In the early morning before he gets up, a pious Jain rests his right shoulder on the ground. He then sits facing the east and repeats verses in praise of Jinadev the victorious and thereafter sets out for the temple to see the images of Tirthankara, say Parshvanatha, avoiding as far as possible on his way the sight of man or beast. On returning home from the temple he bathes in warm water which he first purifies by reciting verses over it. When bath is finished he puts on a freshly-washed cotton cloth, sits on a low wooden stool, and for about an hour says his morning prayer or samayika. He lays sandal, flowers and sweetmeat before the house-gods and then goes to the temple to worship the Jina, where the head ascetic or Swami reads the Jaina Purana, tells his beads, receives the holy water gandhodaka or tirth in which the image has been bathed. On certain occasions he performs a fire worship and feeds the fire with cooked rice and clarified butter in the names of the popular deities or Vishvedevas.

They visit the Jaina temple, listen to a Purana. These details depict conditions more in the rural than in the urban areas. The temple is really the religious as well as the social tie for the community as a whole.
Religion: The religion of Sholapur Jainas may be treated under five heads: temple worship of the twenty-four Jainas and their attendant goddesses; holy places and holy days; the worship of house-gods; the worship of field guardians; and irregular worship of evil diseasecausing spirits. The chief Jaina doctrine is that to take life is sin. Like Buddhists they believe that certain conduct has raised men above the gods. Twenty-four Jainas have gained perfection. To each of these a sign and attendant god and goddess have been allotted and these form the regular objects of Jaina temple worship. Jainas belong to two main sects the Shvetambaras or white-robed and Digambaras or sky-clad, that is, naked saint worshippers. These designations indicate that the ideal saints of the former wear white garments but those of the latter go about nude. The bulk of Sholapur Jainas are of the Digambar section. Temple worship is the chief part of a Jaina's religious duties. Their temples are called bastis or dwellings but can easily be made out from ordinary dwelling by their high plinths. The temple consists of an outer hall and a shrine. The walls of the outer hall are filled with niches of the different popular deities and attendant goddesses. In the shrine is an image generally of the twenty-third Tirthankara Parshvanatha, which in Sholapur temples is generally naked (so far as Digambar a temples are concerned). The images in most cases are of black polished stone, two feet to three feet high, either standing with the hands stretched down the sides or in the seated cross-legged position. The other images generally worshipped in this part are those of Adinatha, Neminatha and Chandranatha. Temple worship is of four kinds: daily worship, eight-day or ashtamihiki worship, wish filling or kalpa worship, and five-blessing or panchakalyani worship. In the daily temple worship the image of the saint is bathed by the temple ministrant in milk and on special days in the five nectars or panchamrita; water, tree sap or vriksha rasa that is sugar, plantains, clarified butter, milk and curds. The priest repeats sacred verses, sandal-paste is laid on the image, and it is decked with flowers.

Jainas perform the ashtanhiki or eight-days worship three times in a year from the bright eighth to the full-moon of Ashadha or July-August, in Kartika or October-November and in Phalguna or February-March. Only the rich perform the wish-Ming or kalpa worship as the worshipper has to give the priest whatever he asks. The pancha-kalyani worship centres round the five auspicious occasions, namely, conception, birth, renunciation, enlightenment and liberation, in the career of a Tirthankara. In certain details it resembles the Brahmanical sacrifice; of course, there is no place for any sort of animal destruction. According to the Jaina doctrine, bathing in holy places does not cleanse one from sin. Sholapur Jainas make pilgrimages to Jaina holy places, Ujjyantagiri or Girnar in South Kathiawar sacred to Nemishvara or Neminatha, Pavapura near Rajagriha or Rajgir about fifty miles south of Patna sacred to Vardhamana Swami, Sammedagiri properly Sammet Shikhar or Parasnath hill in Hazaribagh in West Bengal sacred to Parshvanatha where are feet symbols or padukas of the twenty four Jaina arhats or worthies, and in the south, the monolithic image of Gomateshvara in Shravan Belgola in Mysore, and Mudabidri in South Kanara. They make pilgrimages to Banaras which they say is the birth-place of Parshvanatha. The leading religious seats of Jainas are Delhi, Dinkanchi in Madras, Penangundi in the south. Any poor Jaina may visit these places and is fed for any number of days but on pain of loss of caste he must beg from no one who is not a Jaina.

Fasts: Jaina ascetics keep ten fasts in every lunar month, the fourth, the eighth, the eleventh, the fourteenth, the full-moon and no-moon days. During the chaturmasa, pious house-holders observe full or partial fasts on the 8th and 14th day of a fortnight. They keep most of the Brahmanic holidays and in addition the week beginning from the lunar eighth of Ashadha or June-July, of Kartika or October-November, and of Phalguna or February-March; they hold a special feast on Shruta Panchami in May-June. Of the twenty-four minor gods and goddesses who attend on the twenty-four saints, the chief are Kshetrapala and Kalika or Jwalamalini and Padmavati who have other counter-parts in Bhairava and Lakshmi.

Goddesses and saints : Jainas pay special respect to Shrutadevi who is represented by a sacred book resting on a brazen chair called shruta skandha or learning's prop and in whose honour in all Jaina temples a festival is held on the bright fifth of Jyeshtha or May-June; the Brahmanic counterpart of this deity is Sarasvati. To these guardian goddesses and saints two beings are added, Bhugabali or Gommata of Shravan Belgola in Mysore distinguished by the creepers twining round his arms and Nandishvara a small temple like a brass frame. Besides these, they worship a brass wheel of law or dharmachakra which is symbolic of religion, they also worship an image representing five classes of great deities or Parameshthi, a verbal salutation to the whole of whom forms a pious Jaina's daily prayer. Jainas think that their book and temple gods, the arhats or worthies, the siddhas or perfect beings, the acharyas or preceptors, the upadhyas or priests, and the sadhus or saints are too austere and ascetic to take an interest in every-day life or to be worshipped as house-guardians. Perhaps for this reason their house-deities are generally of a popular nature.

House-deities: As among Hindus, the house-deities are kept in a separate room generally next to the cooking room in a devhara or shrine of carved wood. The images are generally of metal three to four inches high. Among them is usually the mask or bust of some deceased female member of the family who has afflicted the family with sickness and to please her had her image placed and worshipped among the house-gods. Besides the usual Brahmanic or Lingayata house-deities, several families have a house-image of Parshvanatha but the worship of Parshvanatha as a house-image is not usual. As among other Hindus, the daily worship of the house-gods is simple, chiefly consisting in a hurried decking with flowers. On holidays the images are bathed in milk and flowers, sandal-paste, rice, burnt frankincense and camphor, and cooked food are laid before them. Women are not allowed to touch the house-gods. During the absence of the men of the house the temple priest is asked to conduct the daily worship. Latterly, the custom of worshipping non-Jaina house-deities appears to be diminishing. Another class of Jaina deities are the Kshetrapalas or field guardians, essentially the deities of agroculturists, the chief of whom are Bhairava and Brahma.

Beliefs: Jains have no professional exorcists or charmers chiefly because their place is filled by priests. When sickness is believed to be caused by spirit-possession the priest is consulted. Me worships the goddess Padmayati or Lakshmi and gives the sick holy water or tirth in which the goddess' feet have been washed. If the holy water fails to cure, the priest consults his book of omens or sakunavali, adds together certain figures in the book and divides the total by a certain figure in the tables of the book and by referring to the book finds what dead relation of the sick person the quotient stands for. If it is a woman she has become a Jakhin and should be worshipped along with the family-gods, the priest then mutters a verse over a pinch of frankincense ashes or angara burnt before the gods and hands it to the sick to be rubbed on his brow. If the ash-rubbing and Jakhin-worship fail to cure the sick, the priest prepares a paper or bhurj or birch leaf called a yantra or device marked with mystic figures or letters and ties it in a silk cloth or puts it in a silk cloth or puts it in a small casket, or tait. mutters verses over it, burns frankincense, and ties it round the possessed person's arm or neck. If the amulet is of no avail the priest advises an anushthana or god-pleasing. The head of the house asks the priest to read a sacred book before the temple image of one of the saints or to repeat a text or mantra or sacred hymn or stotra some thousand times in honour of one of the saints. The priest is paid for his trouble, and when the sick is cured the god-pleasing ends with a feast to priests and friends. If even the god-pleasing fails, the sick, if he is an orthodox Jaina, resigns himself to his fate or seeks the aid of a physician. Exorcists are shunned by Jain men because part of the exorcists' cure is almost always the offering of a goat or of a cock. When all remedies are of no avail Jains sometimes take the sick to a holy place called Tavnidhi fifteen miles south-west of Chikodi, and the sick or some relation on his behalf worships the spirit-scaring Brahmanidhi until the patient is cured. Jains profess to have sacred pools, animals or trees that have a spirit-scaring power. When an epidemic rages, a special worship of Jainadeva is performed. With a better acquaintance of the basic principles of Jainism consequent upon the spread of education and reading of sacred works by the Shravakas themselves, and through the preachings of saints like Shantisagara, these practices have become out-of-date and looked upon as almost irreligious excepting perhaps in out-of-the-way villages.

Sanskars: Of the sixteen sacraments or sanskars which are nearly the same as the sixteen Brahman sacraments, Sholapur Jainas perform those of thread-girding, marriage, puberty and death. Except that the texts are not Vedic, the rites do not differ much from those performed by Brahmans. Their birth ceremonies are the same as those of Brahmans like whom on the fifth day they worship the goddess Satvai. Boys are girt with the sacred thread between eight and sixteen. A boy must not be girt until he is eight. If, for any reason, it suits the parents to hold the thread-girding before the boy is eight, they add to his age the nine months he passed in the womb. A Jaina astrologer names a lucky day for the thread-girding, a booth is raised before the house, and an earth altar or bahule a foot and a half square is built in the booth and plantain trees are set at corners. Pots are brought from the potters and piled in each corner of the altar and a yellow cotton thread is passed round their necks. Over the altar is a canopy and in front is a small entrance hung with ever-green. A day or two before the thread-girding, the invitation procession consisting of men and women of the boy's house with music and friends starts from the house. They first go to the Jaina temple and the father or some other relation with the family priest lays a cocoanut before the god, bows before him and asks him to perform the ceremony. Jains have no devak or family guardian worship. The boy and his parents go through the preliminary ceremonies as at a Brahman thread-girding. The boy's head is shaved and he is bathed and rubbed with turmeric. The astrologer marks the lucky moment by means of his water-clock or ghatika and as it draws near music plays and guns are fired. The priest recites the auspicious verses and throws red rice over the boy. The boy is seated on his father's or if the father is dead, on some other kins-man's knees on a low stool. The knot of his hair is tied and he is girt with a sacred thread or janve and a string of kusha grass is tied round his waist. The priest kindles the sacred fire, betel is served to the guests and money gifts are distributed among priests and beggars. The boy has to go and beg at five Jaina houses. He stands at the door of each house and asks the mistress of the house to give him alms saying " Oh lady, be pleased to give alms.". The alms usually consists of a waistcloth, rice or cash. Great merit is believed to be gained by giving alms to a newly-girded boy and many women visit the boy's house for three or four days to present bim with silver or clothes. After begging at five houses the boy returns home and a feast to friends and kins-folk ends the first day. The sodmunj or grass-cord loosening is performed usually after a week and sometimes between a week from the thread-girding and the marriage day. The loosening is generally performed near a pimpal (Ficus religiosa) tree. The boy is bathed, the rite of holiday calling or punyahavachan is gone through as on the first day, music plays and flowers, sandal-paste, burnt frankincense and sweetmeats are offered to the pimpal tree. The boy bows before the tree and the priest unties the cord from round his waist. The boy is then dressed in a full suit of clothes, declares that he means to go to Banaras and spend the rest of his life in study and worship and sets out on his journey. Before he has gone many yards, his maternal uncle meets him, promises him his daughter's hand in marriage and asks him to return home and live among them as a house-holder or grihasth. The boy is escorted home with music and band of friends and a small feast to friends and kins-folk ends the ceremony. Latterly, the practice of collective vrata bandha ceremony is becoming popular and they are celebrated at places like Bahunali etc. and on occasions of pancha-kalyani puja etc.

Marriage: Formerly, boys used to be married between fifteen and twenty-five and girls before they came of age. The law has now prescribed fourteen and eighteen as the minimum age for the marriage of a girl and a boy respectively. In towns and in educated families even this age has increased, particularly in the case of girls. The boy's father proposes the match to the girl's father and when they agree an astrologer is consulted. He compares the birth papers of the boy and the girl and approves the match if he thinks the result will be lucky and if the family-stocks and branches or Shakhas of the boy and the girl are different. Then on a lucky day the boy's father visits the girl's house with a few friends, including five kins-women, and are received by the girl's father and mother. The girl is seated on a low stool in front of the house-gods and the boy's father presents her with a sadi and bodice and a pair of silver chains or sankhlis and anklets or valas. Her brow is marked with vermilion and decked with a net-work of flowers. The women of the boy's house dress the girl in the clothes and ornaments brought by the boy's father and the boy's father puts a little sugar in her mouth. Packets of sugar and betel are handed to the guests and the asking or magni ends with a feast to the guests. Formerly, marriage took place two or three years after betrothal. A lucky day for the marriage is fixed by astrologer. The ceremony lasts five days according to orthodox custom. On the first day two married girls in the bride's house bathe early in the morning, wear a ceremonial dress and with music and band of friends go to a pond or a river with copper pots on their heads, lay sandal-paste, flowers, rice, vermilion, burnt frankincense and sweetmeats on the bank in the name of the water goddess, fill the pots with water and mark them with vermilion, set a cocoanut and betel leaves in the mouth of each, cover them with bodice, cloths and deck them with gold necklaces. They then set the water-pots on their heads, return home and lay them on the earthen altars. Flowers, vermilion, burnt frankincense and sweetmeats are offered to the pots and five dishes filled with earth are set before them, sprinkled with water from the water-pots, and mixed seed grain is sown in the earth. Friends and kins-folk are asked to dine at the house and the sprout-offering or ankurarpana is over. The bridegroom is bathed at his house and lights a sacred fire or homa, puts on a rich dress and goes on horseback with music and friends carrying clothes, ornaments, sugar, and betel packets to the bride's house. The bride's party meet him on the way and the bridegroom is taken to the bride's house and seated outside the house on a seat of audumbar or umbar (ficus glomerata) wood. The bride's parents come out with a vessel full of water, the father washes his future son-in-law's feet and the mother pours water over them. The bridegroom is then taken to a raised seat in the house, seated on it and presented with clothes, a gold ring and necklace. The bridegroom's parents present the ornaments and clothes they have brought for the bride, packets of betel and sugar are handed to friends and kins-people and the first day ends with a feast to the bridegroom's party. The bridegroom returns home with his party, is rubbed with turmeric and clarified butter, and bathed by five married women seated in a square with an earthen pot at each corner and a yellow thread passed five times round their necks. The bride is bathed in a similar square at her house. On the third day the bride and bridegroom bathe, dress in newly-washed clothes and starting from their homes meet at the Jaina temple. The priest attends them and the two bow before the idol. The priest makes them repeat the five-salutation hymn which every Jaina ought to know and warns them to keep the Jaina vow or Jain vrata of non-killing or ahimsa and of leading a pure moral life. They are treated to sweetmeats each by their own people and the family-gods and the cork marriage coronet or bashing are worshipped at both houses. On the fourth day the actual marriage ceremony begins. Friends and relations are asked to both houses. The bridegroom is rubbed with fragrant oil and again kindles the sacred fire, dresses in rich clothes and goes to the bride's house on horseback with music and friends. On the way he is met by the bride's party and taken to a raised umbar wood (Ficus glomerata) seat. While he is seated on the seat a couple from the bride's house, generally the bride's parents, come and wash his feet. The bridegroom thrice sips water, puts on the new sacred thread offered him by the bride's priest and swallows curds mixed with sugar which the couple have poured over his hands. The father-in-law leads the bridegroom by the hand to a readymade seat in the house. Before the seat a curtain is held and two heaps of rice, one on each side of the curtain marked with the lucky cross or swastika and crowned with the sacred kusha grass. A short time before the auspicious lucky moment the bride is led by her friends and made to stand on the rice heap behind the curtain, the bridegroom standing on the rice heap on the other side. The guests stand around and the priests recite the nine-planet lucky verses or navgraha mangalashtaka. The astrologer marks the lucky moment by clapping his hands, the musicians redouble their noise, the priests draw aside the curtain, and the bride and the bridegroom look at each other and are husband and wife. The bridegroom marks the bride's brow with vermilion and she throws a flower garland round his neck. They fold their hands together and the bride's father pours water over their hands. They then throw rice over each other's head and the priests and guests throw rice at the couple. The priests tie the marriage wristlets on their hands. The bridegroom then sits on a low stool facing east and the bride on another stool to his left. (In some places the bride sits to the right and the bridegroom to the left.) The priest kindles the sacred or homa fire and the bridegroom feeds the fire with offerings of parched rice held in a dish before him by the bride. Then the priest lays seven small heaps of rice, each with a small stone or a betelnut on each heap with his right toe, moves five times round the heaps, the priest shows the couple the Polar star or Dhruva and payment of a money gift to the priest completes the day's ceremonies. The hems of the couple's garments are knotted together and they walk into the house and bow before the water-pots which have been arranged on the first day and are fed with a dish of milk and clarified butter. Next day the bride's parents give a feast to the bridegroom's party and to their own kins-people. In the morning the couple are seated in the booth and young girls on both sides join them. The bridegroom takes some wet turmeric powder and rubs it five times on the bride's face, who gathers it and rubs it on the bridegroom's face. Next morning the sacred fire is again kindled and the serpent is worshipped. The couple then dine at bride's and are thereafter seated on horseback, the bride before the bridegroom and taken to the Jaina temple where they walk round the god, bow before him and ask his blessing. They then walk to the bridegroom's. Before they reach, every part of the house is lighted and a long white sheet is spread on the ground from the booth door to the god-room. When the couple attempt to cross the threshold the bridegroom's sister blocks the door and does not allow them to enter. The bridgroom asks her why she blocks the door. She says, " Will you give your daughter in marriage to my son? ". He answers, '' Ask my wife.". The sister asks the wife and she says, " I will give one of my three pearls in marriage to your son.". Then the sister leaves the door, the couple walk into the house, bow before the house-gods, and a feast ends the ceremony.

It must be stated that the details about marriage ceremony described above depict a picture more of the past than of the present. They are now getting considerably modified and abridged and some of them are tending to disappear, particularly in cities.

Widow marriage: Though forbidden by their sacred books, all Jainas except Upadhyas (priests) and some families of prestige allow widow marriage. They say the practice came into use about 200 years ago. If a woman does not get on well with her husband, she may live separate from him but cannot marry during her husband's lifetime.

Last rites: When a Jaina is on the point of death, a priest is called in to recite verses to cleanse the sick person's ears, to quiet his soul, and if possible to drive away his disease. When recovery is hopeless, a ceremony called sallekhana vidhi or voluntary submission to death is performed to sever the sick person from worldly pleasures and to make him fit for the life he is about to enter. Sometimes the sick man is made to pass through the ceremony called sannyas grahana (ascetic vow-taking) with the same rites as among Brahmans. When these rites are over and death is near, the dying man is made to lie on a line of three to four wooden stools and the names of gods and sacred hymns are loudly repeated. After death the body is taken outside the house, bathed in warm water (this bathing is not current everywhere), dressed in a waist and shoulder cloth and seated cross-legged on a low stool leaning against the wall. A bier is made and the dead is laid on it and the whole body including the face is covered with a white sheet. Jewels or gold pieces are put into the dead mouth and fastened over the eyes. Four kins-men lift the bier and followed by a party of friends walk after the chief mourner who carries a fire-pot slung from his hand. To perform Jaina funeral rites, from the first to the thirteenth day six men are required, the mourner who carries fire, four corpse-bearers and a body-dresser. Music is played at some funerals, but on the way no coins or grain are thrown to spirits and no words uttered. The mourner is not allowed to look behind. About half-way the bier is laid on the ground and the cloth is removed from the dead face apparently to make sure that there are no signs of life. They go on to the burning ground and set down the bier. One of the party cleans the spot where the pyre is to be prepared and they build the pyre. When it is ready the bearers lay the body on the pile and the chief mourner lights it. When the body is half consumed or about to be set on fire the chief mourner bathes, carries an earthen pot filled with water on his shoulder and walks three times round the pile. Another man walks with him and at each turn makes a hole in the pot with a stone called ashma or the life-stone. When three rounds and three holes are made, the chief mourner throws the pot over his back and beats his mouth with the open palm of his right hand. The ashma or life-stone is kept ten days and each day a rice ball is offered to it. The funeral party stops at the burning ground till the skull bursts. If they choose, some of the party may go home but the six mourners must remain there till the body is consumed when each offers a flour-ball and a handful of water to the life-stone and returns home. A lamp is set on the spot where the dead breathed his last, and kept there burning for at least twenty-four hours. On the second day the six chief mourners go to the burning ground and in the house put out the fire with offerings of milk, sugar and water. On the third day they gather the deceased's bones and bury them somewhere among the neighbouring hills. Except offering a rice ball to the life-stone from the first to the tenth day nothing special is performed from the fourth to the ninth day. The family are held impure for ten days. On the tenth the house is cow-dunged and all members of the family bathe and each offers a handful of water called tilodaka (sesame water) to the dead. The house is purified by sprinkling holy water and the sacred or homa fire is lit by the priest. On the twelfth the clothes of the deceased are given to the poor and rice balls in the name of the deceased and his ancestors are made and sandal-paste, fowers, vermilion, frankincense and sweetmeats are offered to them. The temple gods are worshipped and a feast to the corpse-bearers and dresser ends the twelfth day ceremony. On the thirteenth day the shraddha (mind-rite) is performed and a few friends and relations are asked to dine. A fortnightly and monthly ceremony is performed every month for one year and a feast is held every year for twelve years in some of the families. According to the old rule the widow's head should be shaved on the tenth but the practice is becoming rare. She however gives up her lucky thread and toe ornaments and does not wear a black bodice or lugade. When a sanyasi (ascetic) dies his body is carried in a canopied chair instead of an ordinary bier. The body is laid on the pyre and bathed in the five nectars or panchamritas milk, curds, clarified butter, plantain and sugar. Camphor is lighted on the head and the pile is lit. At a sanyasi's funeral only five men are required. A fire-carrier is not wanted as fire can be taken from any neighbouring house to light the pile. The family of the dead arc impure for only three days and no balls are offered to the dead. When an infant dies before teething it is buried, and boys who die before their thread-girding are not honoured with the rice-ball offering. No special rites are performed in the case of a married woman, a widow, or a woman who dies in child-bed. No evil attaches to a death which happens during an eclipse of the sun of the moon. In the case of a person who dies at an unlucky moment, Jains perform the same rites as other Hindus.

Bhattaraka : Jains are bound together by a strong caste-feeling; and settle social disputes at caste-meetings. Appeals against the decisions of the caste-council lie to their Bhattaraka or swami or religious heads who with the two titles Jinasena Swami and Lakshmisena Swami and with jurisdiction over the Jainas of almost the whole Bombay-Karnatak, live at Sholapur.

Non-Sholapur Jainas include a considerable number of Jaina Marwadis and Jaina Gujarat Vanis who have come from Marwad and Gujarat for trade and have settled in the district. They do not marry with the Jainas of Sholapur, and unlike the Jainas of Sholapur they have no objection to take water and food from non-Jainas. Their favourite place of pilgrimage is Mount Abu. They are money-lenders and dealers in piece-goods and jewellery. They live in well-built houses, send their children to schools, and are a prosperous class. Many of them have now settled in this part, especially in prosperous business centres where they have built temples for themselves.

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