Cultural Program, Bhawna & Swami Vatsalya
Location: 6051 Springfield Rd, Glen Allen, VA 23060
Dinner: 2:30 – 6:00 PM
Mahavir Janma Kalyanak, also known as Mahavir Jayanti, is the auspicious birth celebrations of Lord Mahavir, born over 2600 years ago. Mahavir Bhagwan is the last Tirthankar in the current cycle of 24 Tirthankars, and so his teachings are of paramount importance to the present Jain followers and his birth event is one of the main festivals in Jainism. For a Jain follower, the five kalyanaks/events in the life of a Tirthankar Bhagwan viz. Conception(Chyavan Kalyanak), Birth(Janma Kalyanak), Renunciation(Diksha Kalyanak), Omniscience(Keval Gnan Kalyanak) and Liberation(Nirvaan Kalyanak) are important days for celebrations.
The birth of Lord Mahavir happened on the thirteenth day of the bright half of the Indian month Chaitra and this event is known as Mahavir Janma Kalyanak. This day normally falls in March/April of the Gregorian Calendar. Celebrations include performing Abhishek of the idol, Poojas, Snatra Pooja( recalling the life of Mahavir Bhagwan) charity and non violent acts that promote Ahimsa, procession of Idols, cultural events celebrating his life and having delicious Jain meals. His life is recalled on that day so that it inspires others to develop the qualities of universal friendship, compassion, appreciation and equanimity, overcome negative tendencies (anger, pride, deceit and greed), develop an understanding of the true nature of reality and experience the bliss of the Soul. Lord Mahavir was a living example of this, and by remembering his life events, we are inspired to walk on his path.
Simandhar Swami Keval Gnan Kalyanak
The day of Mahavir Janma Kalyank also coincides with the Keval Gnan Kalyanak of Shri SImandhar Swami. Keval Gnan Kalyanak is the celebration of Tirthankar Bhagwan attaining Supreme Knowledge or becoming Ominscient. Achieving Omniscience is necessary to becoming liberated from the cycle of birth and death. Shri Simandhar Swami is the first of the series of 24 Tirthankars from Maha Videh Kshetra and is considered as “Arihant Parmeshthi: viz, those who overcome their anger, pride, deceit and greed.