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The Śvētāmbara
Śvētāmbara
(/ʃwɛˈtʌmbərə/; Sanskrit: श्वेतांबर or श्वेतपट śvētapaṭa; also spelled Svetambar, Shvetambara, Shvetambar, Swetambar or Shwetambar) is one of the two main branches of Jainism, the other being the Digambara. Śvētāmbara
Śvētāmbara
"white-clad" is a term describing its ascetics' practice of wearing white clothes, which sets it apart from the Digambara
Digambara
"sky-clad" Jainas, whose ascetic practitioners go naked. Śvētāmbaras, unlike Digambaras, do not believe that ascetics must practice nudity.[1] Śvētāmbaras also believe that women are able to obtain moksha. Śvētāmbaras maintain that the 19th Tirthankara, Māllīnātha, was a woman.

Contents

1 History 2 Denominations 3 See also 4 Notes 5 References

History[edit] The Śvētāmbara
Śvētāmbara
tradition follows the lineage of Sthulabhadra. The Kalpa Sūtra
Kalpa Sūtra
mentions some of the lineages in ancient times. The Śvētāmbara
Śvētāmbara
monastic orders are branches of the Vrahada Order, which was founded in 937 CE. The most prominent among the classical orders today are the Kharatara (founded 1024 CE), the Tapa Gaccha
Tapa Gaccha
(founded 1228 CE) and the Tristutik Gaccha. A major dispute was initiated by Lonka Shaha, who started a movement opposed to idol worship in 1476. The Sthānakavāsī
Sthānakavāsī
and Terapanth orders are branches of this movement. Major reforms by Vijayananda Suri of the Tapa Order in 1880 led a movement to restore orders of wandering monks, which brought about the near-extinction of the Yati institutions. Rajendrasuri
Rajendrasuri
restored the śramaṇa organization of the Tristutik Gaccha. Some Śvētāmbara
Śvētāmbara
monks and nuns cover their mouth with a white cloth or muhapatti to practise ahimsa even when they talk. By doing so they minimize the possibility of inhaling small organisms. Denominations[edit]

It has been suggested that Śvētāmbara Terapanth
Śvētāmbara Terapanth
be merged into this article. (Discuss) Proposed since March 2018.

Tirth Pat
Tirth Pat
on display at Prince of Wales museum, Mumbai

The Śvētāmbara
Śvētāmbara
sect was divided into different orders. First some saints left Śvētāmbara
Śvētāmbara
sect to form the Lonka sect in 1474,[citation needed], which eventually lead to forming of the Sthānakavāsī
Sthānakavāsī
in 1653. In 1760, thirteen Saints started their own order called the Terapanth.[2] So now at present there are three orders in the Śvētāmbara
Śvētāmbara
sect: Murtipujaka
Murtipujaka
(Deravasi), Sthānakavāsī
Sthānakavāsī
and Terapanth. The Sthānakavāsī
Sthānakavāsī
believe in praying to Saints rather than to an idol in a temple, the same philosophy is carried on by the Terapanth. Other difference between Deravasi Jains and Sthānakavāsī
Sthānakavāsī
Jains is that the saints (monks) of Deravasi do not wear a muhapatti near their mouth to cover it, they hold it in hand. Sthānakavāsī
Sthānakavāsī
and Terapanthi saints wear muhapatti held in place by white cotton thread tied to their ears. They do not keep Idols in their Jain temples but pray and bow to the Pancha Mahamantar. The Murtipujakas keep idols of the tīrthaṅkaras at their temples and worship them. See also[edit]

Tirth Pat

Notes[edit]

^ Dundas 2002, p. 45. ^ http://www.jainworld.com/jainbooks/antiquity/svetsubs.htm

References[edit]

Mary Pat Fisher, Living Religions (5th Edition) (2003), p. 130 Dundas, Paul (2002) [1992], The Jains (Second ed.), Routledge, ISBN 0-415-26605-X 

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