04 March 2010

The Special Divine Plan Of Samavasaran (1/4)

The Construction of the Divine Pavilion of Tirthankars
[Like many other branches of science the branch of constructing assembly halls has also amply developed. They construct a large auditorium where thousands of people may arrive, be accommodated, may listen to the lectures and peacefully leave, requires a trained mind with engineering skill. For such an arrangement renowned experts display their skill. Still there are incidents of chaos and stampede in such large congregations. Even the police forces get nervous in trying to control such crowds of thousands of people.

Thousands of years ago the divine pavilions were created for the assembly of a Tirthankar where not only millions of human beings but also innumerable gods and animals used to assemble.

In a large pavilion or assembly hall covering an area of one Yojan (4 sq. kosa or 12 sq. km) used to accommodate innumerable gods, humans and animals. They would arrive and sit in the allotted sections, listen to the discourses of the Tirthankar and go back peacefully. There were adequate traffic and parking arrangements for vehicles. The detailed and scientific description of such arrangements available in the ancient scriptures is truely astonishing. It also reveals the highly developed science and intellect during that period. We give brief description of the structure of these divine pavilions of the Tirthankars.]

The beholding of a Tirthankar in his divine pavilion, pondering over his discourses, and following his teachings purifies and strengthens the attitude, faith and realization of spiritual pursuits. Sitting in proximity of the Tirthankar, seeing him, listening to his discourse and coming under the influence of his aura and various unique attributes is spiritually inspiring not only for the gods and humans but also for the animals. Men and animals of contrasting attitudes loose their cruelty and mutual animosity, disease, sorrow, afflictions, fear etc. The Tirthankar’s discourse also provides benefits in shape of enhancement of knowledge and science and progress on the path of liberation through stoppage of inflow and acceleration of shedding of Karmas.

The Great Benefits
Knowing about the arrival of Bhagavan Mahavir in the Samavasaran the sages said, "O beloved of gods! This is the source of great benefits for us. When even the hearing of the names of Arihant Bhagavants is a boon, there is no doubt that approaching, greeting, bowing admiring and worshipping him in person is highly beneficial." It is a great occasion to listen to even one word of the august preaching of the great man. Bowing to him and offering him and offering him reverence is sure to result in attainment of the pure blissful state of liberation besides being source of benefits, happiness and peace during this life and the later incarnations.

What is a Samavasaran? How is it created? Who creates it? When and for how long the Tirthankar gives his discourse in the Samavasaran? All these questions have been dealt in various canons (Agams), and their different commentaries (Niryukti, Vritti and Bhashya) in eloquent style.

The Samavasaran is the religious assembly of Tirthankars. The literal meaning of the term is proper congregation at a specific place or a place where beings with different attitudes assemble in an orderly manner. As such, the assembling of a variety of worthy beings-specially humans, animals and gods-for the purpose of beholding the Tirthankar and listening to his preachings is called Samavasaran. It is something much larger in dimension, much wider in scope, much numerous in species, and much lofty in purpose as compared to the modern parliament where representatives from various areas of the country meet.

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