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JAINISM

The name Jainism is derived from Jina . The soul can get released from this cycle and WORSHIP
[conqueror or victor], meaning someone who attain liberation i.e. 'Moksha' by complete
has achieved the highest spiritual liberation. disassociation from the karmic matter by Recomended daily religious routine
The Jina’s, having gained infinite knowledge following the path of the Jinas, although many for all Jains
and wisdom, laid down the way of spiritual births and deaths may have to be endured.
progress for humanity and became known as  Meditation [Samayik] and prayer.
Tirthankaras [Prophets]. Mahavira was the last The underlining principle of Jain living is non-  Honour to the Tirthankara. [Puja] and
of the 24 such Tirthankars. The first Tirthankar violence (Ahinsa), i.e. harmlessness to all Pilgrimage to holy places
was Rishabhdev (initiator of Jainism); a living beings of the universe and to treat all  Respect for, and listening to, spiritual
prehistoric person or ‘Aadinath’ (meaning the souls as equal. Other principles are non teachers.
First God.) attachment to possessions, not lying, not  Repentance [Pratikraman], twice a day
stealing and sexual restraint (with celibacy as and the annual one on Samvatsari day
Jainism is one of the major ancient religions of the ideal). One needs to observe self-control  Renunciation of certain pleasures,
India. It was revived through the teachings of (sanyam) in thoughts, speech and action to activities, eg.food and drinks for a fixed
Lord Mahavira, who lived from 599 to 527 BC. follow these principles. time. [Pachchakhan]
Mahavira was born as a prince in to a royal
family near the modern city of Patna in Bihar in Mahivira founded a fourfold organisation of JAIN FESTIVALS (Dates vary every year)
North Eastern India. He renounced his wealth monks and nuns, who dedicate themselves to
and became monk. follow his teachings exclusively in the pursuit of March / April:
'moksha'; and lay men and women who follow Mahavir Janma Kalyanak (Birthday)
Jains believe in an infinite universe and that them within the constraints of their everyday
there is no creator, saviour or destroyer of the life and duties. It is accepted that all can August / September:
universe and there is no supreme power to eventually achieve the highest level of Paryushan (A period of eight days of
give you pleasure or pain. Jainism is a religion liberation [moksha], but monks and nuns, religious austerity/fasting and forgiveness)
of self-help i.e. one shapes ones future by because of their ascetic way of life (observing
ones own deeds (Theory of Karma particles the principles at the highest level), can follow Last day of Paryushan:
attached to our soul). Jains are followers of the path of purification more quickly. (Jain Samvatsary (Annual Forgiveness/repentance
Jinas (Thirthankars), who through their Monks & Nuns do not use any transport hence day)
teachings of ‘Right belief, Right knowledge and not seen outside India)
Right conduct ('Three jewels' of religion), guide October/November:
the peoole on the path to liberation (Moksha). Lay persons however, are recognised Lord Mahavir's Nirvan (Diwali) (Last day of
members of the Jaina order and are the Jain / Hindu Year)
The universe is filled with an infinite number of encouraged to worship, study the scriptures,
souls. Each of them is affected by Karma, exercise self control, give to charity and Day after Diwali: New Year
accumulated through their deeds and passion, practice austerities and fasting. Six essential
which bind them to the continual cycle of death activities are recommended as daily routine of Jains follow a lunar calendar of twelve months
and re-birth. On rebirth, souls take body of any worship. to a year and 29 to 30 days a month. A Lunar
of the millions of categories of living being on year is of 354 or 355 days, hence to make up
this universe such as plants, insects, animals, with the Solar year, there are 13 months in
humans, heavenly and hellish bodies etc. every third year
CARE for JAIN PATIENTS

Special considerations Diet JAINISM


 Jain patients usually prefer to have close  Jains do not drink alcohol and are
friends or relatives to be present as much vegetarian (no egg, meat, seafood or and
as possible. mushrooms, but milk is permitted). Food is
normally prepared separately to avoid
 Patients prefer to be accommodated in contamination by non-permitted foods. CARE for JAIN PATIENTS
separate male or female ward areas and Those who are strict followers of Jain
women to be cared for by a nurse/doctor of principles may also avoid root vegetables
the same gender, wherever possible. such as potatoes, carrots, beetroot, onions,
garlic etc. The strictest will not eat or drink
 Patients may wish to brush their teeth between sunset and sunrise and will only
before breakfast and wash themselves with drink water that has been boiled, cooled
flowing water and rinse their mouths before and filtered.
reciting prayers.
Care of the dying
 Patients may wish to recite prayers or read
religious books/scriptures or listen to  Jains may value the presence of a Jain
religious audio recordings. spiritual care-giver. Published by the
 Jains are not strict about medication, but will  Close family members and relatives will Jain Spiritual Care Committee
tend to avoid medicines derived from animal wish to remain at the patient’s bed side and of
products or developed by testing on may read from their religious books.
animals. Prayers are offered for the soul of the dying The National Council of
patient.
 Prayers are chanted in a baby’s ears Vanik Associations (UK)
immediately after birth.  Jains prefer no interference with the dead
body. If a coroner’s post-mortem is required,
 Termination of pregnancy is not allowed. explanation will be necessary.

 There are no religious objections to organ


 There are no religious objections to blood
donation.
transfusions.
 The body is always cremated at the earliest
opportunity. Charity no. 1137083

(Nov 2011) www.ncva.co.uk