Jainism, one of the oldest faiths in the world dated many thousands of years ago to the Indus Valley Civilisation. Along with Hinduism and Buddhism, Jainism is one of the three ancient Indian religious traditions.
Jainism is a unique religion with its own philosophy, mythology, ethics and rituals. It has significantly preserved its personal religious identity, containing its own deities, scriptures and preceptors. Jainism has its own temples, places of worship and pilgrimage, and festivals. The designate Jain applies to over eight million members of India's most ancient Sramana religion. Fixing a specific date of origin of Jainism, however, presents the utmost difficulty. To the Jains, Jainism reveals itself over and over through myriad eternities of time by way of innumerable Tirthankaras or fordmakers.
Jainism: An Eternal Pilgrimage is a lucidly written introduction to Jainism, which covers all aspects of Jainism, right from its ancient origins to its Universal History, from its 24 Tirthankaras to its preceptor lineage, from its mendicants to its laity, giving direct insights into the overall teleology of the Jain Dharma. The book has several with Sanskrit quotations from primary sources, printed in Devanagari and explained in English.
The author, Mr Bal Patil is a Jain thinker, journalist and minority rights activist from Mumbai. The septuagenarian has been instrumental in several important states of India recognising the Jain faith as a minority religious community. He is a polymath as well as a polyglot. He has translated important indological works from French and German into English. Unfortunately, he is fighting a losing battle against motor-neuron disease which has caused acute atrophy of his body beneath the neck. We live in hope, but expect that this will be the last book from his pen.
We are proud to publish this book as part of the Pandit Nathuram Premi Research Series. Since this is our Centenary Year, we are experimenting with different printing technologies, book sizes, paper and cover designs. This book has been digitally printed on acid free paper. We hope the result shall please our readers.