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Tagged : ‘Temple’

A Gentle Faith: Jainism in Cincinnati

5 years, 10 months ago Writing 2

Harshad Shah grinds a mixture of saffron and water on a special wooden plate made from the Chandan tree. The mixture is used to make the red Kashar dot placed between the participants’ eyes. Non-violence is one of the most important principles in Jainism, so those performing the ceremony wear scarfs to prevent the accidental damage their breath may cause to microscopic airborne organisms.

This story was originally published in CityBeat.

The suburban home in Amelia looked similar to any other Ohio home hosting a gathering. Cars lined the driveway and the chatter of children drifted from the backyard. But this wasn’t a birthday party or a family reunion.

More than 2,500 years ago Lord Mahavir, the 24th and last Tirhankara, or spiritual leader of the Jain religion, was born. After 12 years of meditation, Lord Mahavir had a spiritual realization and spent the next 30 years preaching in India. Now his followers are known as Jains, and on July 17 dozens of local Jains gathered for a ceremony, called puja, in the home of Sam Patel of Amelia. (more…)