Ganadhara

In Jainism, the term Ganadhara is used to refer the chief disciple of a Tirthankara. In samavasarana, the Tīrthankara sat on a throne without touching it (about two inches above it).[1] Around, the Tīrthankara sits the Ganadharas.[2] According to Digambara tradition, only a disciple of exceptional brilliance and accomplishment (riddhi) is able to fully assimilate, without doubt, delusion, or misapprehension, the anekanta teachings of a Tirthankara.[3] The presence of such a disciple is mandatory in the samavasarana before Tirthankara delivers his sermons. Ganadhara interpret and mediate to other people the divine sound (divyadhwani) which the Jains claim emanates from Tirthankara's body when he preaches.[4]

The monastic sangha of Jainism is divided into a number of orders or troupes called ganas, each headed by a ganadhara.[5][6]

In 20th century, statues depicting Tīrthankaras and Ganadharas were unearthed in Mayurbhanj district of Odisha.[7]

List of the Ganadhara of 24 Tīrthankara

No. Tīrthankara Count Famous Ganadhara
1 Rishabhanatha (Adinatha) 84 Vrishabha Sen, Kachha, Maha Kachha, Nami, Vinami[8]
23 Parshvanatha 8 Kesi, Subhadatta, Aryaghoṣa, Vashishtha, Brahmachari, Soma, Sridhara, Virabhadra and Yasas
24 Mahavira 11 Indrabhuti Gautama, Sudharmaswami

Ganadhara Vrisabha Sen

Vrishabha Sen was the Ganadhara of Tīrthankara Rishabhanatha. According to Jain legends, after the nirvana of Rishabhanatha, Bharata was in grief. Ganadhara Vrisabha Sen saw him and spoke to him:

"Surely, this is not an occasion for grief, for the Lord has gone to the everlasting Abode of the Immortals, which you and I even are also going to reach very soon![9]

After this, Bharata recollected himself, touched the feet of Ganadhara Vrisabha Sen and left for his kingdom.

Notes

  1. ^ Jain 2008, p. 95.
  2. ^ Jain 2008, p. 96.
  3. ^ Jain 2012, p. xi.
  4. ^ Dundas 2002, p. 37.
  5. ^ The Early Centuries of Jainism
  6. ^ Jain Agama Literature
  7. ^ Nagendra-Natha Vasu, The archaeological survey of Mayurabhanja, p. xivi
  8. ^ Jain 2008, p. 126.
  9. ^ Champat Rai Jain (1929). "XI. Ganadhara Vrisabha Sen". Risabha Deva - The Founder of Jainism. K. Mitra, Indian Press, Allahabad. p. 189.

References

Acharya (Jainism)

Āchārya (Ācārya) means the Head of an order of ascetics. Some of the famous achāryas are Bhadrabahu, Kundakunda, Samantabhadra, Umaswami, Sthulibhadra.

In Digambara Jainism, Āchārya has thirty-six primary attributes (mūla guṇa) consisting in:

Twelve kinds of austerities (tapas);

Ten virtues (dasa-lakṣaṇa dharma);

Five kinds of observances in regard to faith, knowledge, conduct, austerities, and power.

Six essential duties (Ṣadāvaśyaka); and

Gupti- Controlling the threefold activity of:the body;

the organ of speech; and

the mind.

According to Jain text, Dravyasamgraha, Those who themselves practise the five-fold observances in regard to faith (darśanācāra), knowledge (jñānācāra), power (vīryācāra), conduct (cāritrācāra), and austerities (tapācāra), and guide disciples to follow these observances, are the Chief Preceptors (Ācāryas), worthy of meditation.” (52)

Antakrddaasah

Antakrddaaśāh is the eighth of the 12 Jain āgamas said to be promulgated by Māhavīra himself. Antakrddaaśāh translated as "Ten Chapters on End-Makers" is said to have been composed by Ganadhara Sudharmaswami as per the Śvetámbara tradition.

It contains stories describing those who succeeded in destroying all their karmas and succeeded in attaining Moksa and putting an end to the re-births.

Anuttaraupapātikadaśāh

Anuttaraupapātikadaśāh is the ninth of the 12 Jain āgamas said to be promulgated by Māhavīra himself. Anuttaraupapātikadaśāh translated as "Ten Chapters about the arisers in the Highest Heavens" is said to have been composed by Ganadhara Sudharmaswami as per the Śvetámbara tradition.

Bhadrabahu II

Bhadrabahu was a Digambara monk.

Bhutabali

Acharya Bhutabali (c. 66 – c. 90 CE) was a Digambara monk. He along with Acharya Pushpadanta composed the most sacred Jain text, Satkhandagama.

Dharasena

Acharya Dharasena was a Digambara monk of first century CE.

Drstivada

Drstivāda is a legendary lost text in the Jain religion. It is the last of the 12 Jain āgamas as per Śvetámbara tradition, said to be promulgated by Māhavīra himself and composed by Ganadhara Sudharmaswami. Drstivāda, translated as “Disputation about views”, was said to contain the entire knowledge of the Fourteen Purvas or prior knowledge that is now considered to be totally lost, in part because the tradition holds that the Drstivāda itself is also completely lost. However, its contents have been referred and explained in Nandi and Samavāyānga Sūtra.

Indrabhuti Gautama

Indrabhuti Gautama or Gautam Swami was the Ganadhara (chief disciple) of Mahavira, the 24th and last Jain Tirthankara of present half cycle of time. He is also referred to as Gautama Gandhara or Gautama Swami.

Jayasena

Jayasena was a twelfth century Digambara Jain Acharya who wrote Tattparyavritti (or the Purport), a commentary on Acharya Kundakunda's Pravachanasara.

Jnatrdharmakathah

Jnātrdhārmakathāh is the sixth of the 12 Jain āgamas said to be promulgated by Māhavīra himself. Jnātrdhārmakathāh translated as "Stories of Knowledge and Righteousness" is said to have been composed by Ganadhara Sudharmaswami as per the Śvetámbara tradition.

Kesi (Ganadhara)

Kesi was the Ganadhara of twenty third Jain Tirthankara, Parshvanatha, who is said to have met Gautama.

Kundakunda

Acharya Kundakunda was a Digambara Jain monk and philosopher, who is still revered. He authored many Jain texts such as: Samayasara, Niyamasara, Pancastikayasara, Pravachanasara, Atthapahuda and Barasanuvekkha. He occupies the highest place in the tradition of the Digambara Jain acharyas. All Digambara Jains say his name before starting to read the scripture. Modern scholarship has found it difficult to locate him chronologically, with a possible low date in the 2nd-3rd centuries CE and a late date in 8th century.

List of Jain monks

This is a list of Jain ascetics. The list include the names of ascetics who are known for their contributions to Jain philosophy and Jainism in general.

Indrabhuti Gautama

Bhadrabahu, c. 4th century BCE. Last acharya of undivided Jain sangha.

Kundakunda- 1st century BCE

Sudharma Swami

Umaswati- Author of the Jain text, Tattvarthsutra

Munisuvrata

Munisuvrata Swami (Munisuvratanātha) was the twentieth Tirthankara of the present half time cycle (avasarpini) in Jain cosmology. He became a siddha, a liberated soul which has destroyed all of his karma. Events of the Jaina version of Ramayana are placed at the time of Munisuvratanatha. His chief apostle (gaṇadhara) was sage Malli Svāmi.

Prasnavyakaranani

Praśnavyākaranani is the tenth of the 12 Jain āgamas as per Śvetámbara tradition said to be promulgated by Māhavīra himself and composed by Ganadhara Sudharmaswami.

Praśnavyākaranani translated as “Questions and Explanations” discusses a variety of doctrinal matters concerning Jainism.

Sudharmaswami

Sudharmaswami (Sanskrit: Sudharmāsvāmī or Sudharman; 607 BC – 507 BC) was the fifth ganadhara of Mahavira. All the current Jain acharyas and monks follow his rule.

Upasakadasah

Upāsakadaśāh is the seventh of the 12 Jain āgamas said to be promulgated by Māhavīra himself. Upāsakadaśāh translated as "Ten Chapters on Lay Attenders" is said to have been composed by Ganadhara Sudharmaswami as per the Śvetámbara tradition.

Vidyananda (8th-century Jain monk)

Vidyananda was an 8th-century Indian Jain monk. Not to be confused with 20th-century Indian Jain monk Acharya Vidyananda.

Vipakasruta

Vipākaśruta is the eleventh of the 12 Jain āgamas as per Śvetámbara tradition said to be promulgated by Māhavīra himself and composed by Ganadhara Sudharmaswami. Vipākaśruta translated as “The Scripture about Ripening” contains stories describing those who experience result about karmas.

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