Paryushana is celebrated during the month of Bhadrapada (August)
During these days Jain devotees fast. They partake simple meals once a day. They stay away from vices and addictions.
It is a period for introspection, self- purification…
The word “Paryushan” has many meanings:
Pari+ushan=all kinds+to burn
It is to shed, burn our karmas that 12 different types of austerities are observed.
‘ushan’ also means to stay closer.
To stay closer to our own soul…
to overcome our passions, anger, ego, desire…
Jains believe that Reality has many aspects which is perceived differently by different people. The partial finding is sometimes contradictory to one another. But all points of view are real (from the perceiver’s point of view)
Thus Jains established the theory of Non absolutist standpoint.
The above theory could dissolve so many conflicts as one can then ‘agree to disagree’
Paryushana is a 10 day Jain Festival.
Dasha Lakshyana in Jainism could be understood as the 10 steps to Nirvaana. These in turn could be likened to the ten modes of behavior.
Each trait is assigned one day…
What are these ten traits?
Gentleness of nature
Moderation in all we undertake
Devotional penance, study of religious tenets
Giving away in charity
Self imposed limit for worldly possessions
Maintaining moral behavior under all circumstances.
The last day of Paryushana is celebrated as the day of universal forgiveness.
Mahatma Gandhi said:
The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.
I got the following beautiful note by email:
On the occasion of Paryushan Parva,
we ask for forgiveness,
if we may have hurt your feelings by thoughts, words or actions, knowingly or unknowingly. We forgive all the living beings
Khamemi Savve Jiva
We seek pardon from all the living beings
Savve Jiva Khamantu Me
We are friendly towards all the living beings
Mitti Me Savva Bhutesu
And we seek enemity with none Veram Majjham Na Kenvi And we ask for forgiveness from all Michhami Dukkaddam
I believe in the custom of having a day for asking forgiveness, but it must come from the heart and it should not become a meaningless ritual…Amongst the Christians, confession is therapeutic and requires courage just like ‘Michhami Dukaddam does…Hindus believe that dip in the Ganges can absolve one of sins…I believe that a true repentant heart does that…anytime…anywhere…having said that, it is good to have a time and place to pour out ones heart and ask for forgiveness whether it is from an aggrieved person or from the universe…I feel one can also forgive oneself and move on…Having said that Michhami Dukaddam all you beautiful people I know!