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11th Century Jain Sculptures Discovered

Why is it in the news?

  • Recently, three 11th-century Jain sculptures were unearthed in Varuna village, Mysuru district, during drainage work.

More about the news

  • Out of the three sculptures, one is severely damaged beyond recognition, while the other two are in relatively good condition.
  • One of the sculptures depicts a Jain Tirthankara, but the exact identity is challenging to determine due to the absence of any distinguishing symbols.
  • The discovered sculptures have been relocated to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) museum at the Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalay in Madhya Pradesh.

About Jain Tirthankaras

  • In Jainism, a Tirthankara serves as a spiritual teacher and a guide on the righteous path (dharma).
  • Tirthankaras are regarded as supreme preachers of dharma, having successfully conquered the cycle of death and rebirth (samsara) themselves, leading the way for others to follow.
  • Upon attaining kevala jnana (omniscience) by realizing the true nature of the self or soul, a Tirthankara achieves spiritual enlightenment.
  • The Jain tradition recognizes a total of 24 Tirthankaras who significantly contributed to the development of the Jain religion.
  • The first Tirthankara is Rishabhanatha, while the 24th and final Tirthankara is Lord Mahavira.

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