Jainism

Main Features:

 

Jain” = “a follower of a Jina.” 

 

Jinas also called “Tirthankaras” - “one who establishes a “tirth” (ford or crossing) across “the ocean of existence (as called by Hindus and Jains).

 

An infinity of Tirthankaras have come and gone in the universe -- even now there are Tirthankaras teaching in other parts of the cosmos.  In ours, 24 have come and gone in the present cosmic period.  The first (Risabha) lived for 8.4 million years.

 

The self is ensnared in repeating cycles of death and rebirth; liberation is escape from this cycle

 

Jiva: soul.  Main feature is awareness, consciousness

scattered all over the universe. Human beings, celestial beings,
infernal beings, animals, fish, birds, bugs, insects, plants, etc. are
the most common forms of Jiva with which we can easily relate. However,
Jain scriptures state that there are 8.4 million species of Jiva in

 

Karma (with a Jain twist): Jains maintain that karma is an actual physical matter that is attracted to the soul by an individual’s actions; it adheres to the soul because of the individual’s desires and aversions.

 

Moksha: visualized as a process occurring in stages (though it can occur quickly in some extraordinary individuals)

 

Jain Cosmology

 

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