Reflections on the first year MA Course on Jainology, Comparative Religion & Philosophy

Author:  Image of Rajeev ShahRajeev Shah
Published: 11.10.2009
Updated: 30.07.2015
Samani Prasanna Pragya
Samani Rohit Pragya

Reflections on the first year MA Course on Jainology, Comparative Religion & Philosophy

Ever since my childhood in Nairobi, Kenya there was an earnest desire and quest for learning more about the Jain religion. At that time, the only books in English I could find were from Muni Shree Chandrashekharvijayji and Muni Kushalchandravijayji Maharaj. It’s only after all these years, have I been fortunate enough to embark on this comprehensive and detailed masters course. It is indeed a dream come true.

Learning as we all know is a lifelong experience. Sometimes we learn out of compulsion, sometimes for career progression and at other times simply to progress from one class to another. This masters course has truly been a self motivated and fulfilling educational experience. There is depth and profoundness on every single page. In future, I am sure that at any possible opportunity I’ll keep on reading the material over and over again.

During the course of life it is possible we come across many treasures but don’t have the  key to open the treasure chest. This masters course has provided they master key - given the foundation and roots to not only immerse oneself further into the Jain philosophy but also other Eastern and Western philosophies.

I pay my sincerest obeisance to Acharya Mahapragya for inspiring this course and utmost credit to the entire faculty in compiling the educational material. All technical terms are clearly explained and ample references are made to the Agamic sources and other philosophical works. It is free from dogmatism and bias towards any particular sectarian division. It is knowledge for the sake of knowledge.

The course is undoubtedly challenging. Four volumes of books in the first year, some of them over 300 pages long and with some concepts I had never even dreamt of before! However, there is constant support from the Samaniji’s who assist in clarifying any ambiguities or difficulties.

I genuinely look forward to the second year. From a dravyarthika view point, I aim to gain the MA, but from a bhavarthika viewpoint, I have already obtained the MA “focus on Mera Atma”!

JVB London
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