History of Jainism ►Jainism during Kunika Ajatashatru

Posted: 10.07.2012
Updated on: 04.10.2012




Jainism during Kunika Ajatashatru prospered considerably. Kunika Ajatasatru was a ruler of the Magadha Empire and a follower of Lord Mahavira.

Jainism during Kunika Ajatashatru flourished significantly. All the kings and the royal generations of this period wholly patronised and followed Jainism. They even provided all the required facilities to develop the literary and cultural activities of Jainism. The Jains have been provided with magnificent grants for their spiritual purposes. The emperors and the kings have constructed numerous Jain temples and sculptures. These helped in promoting of literary services throughout India. As a result, the Jain Acharyas could also make significant contributions in literary works. They have beautifully written about the beautiful temples in their books.


Influence of Jainism on Kunika Ajatasatru

Kunika Ajatashatru was a king of the Magadha Empire in north India. He was the son of King Bimbisara. Ajatashatru from the very beginning has been represented as a Jain in all the holy Jain texts. These literatures throw light on almost all the incidents connected with his life. The first holy text Upanga, Uvavai mainly highlights upon the relations of Kunika with Lord Mahavira, the twenty-fourth Jain Tirthankara. According to these texts he met Lord Mahavira at Vaishali and Champa several times. In the Jain sutras it is stated that Ajatashatru declared his strong conviction upon the ideas of Mahavira. It was for his ideas that Ajatashatru was initiated into his religion. The philosophy of Mahavira and his ideas of renunciation and non-violence greatly appealed him. He is said to have appointed an officer `Pravrttivaduka Purusa`, who informed the king of the activities of Mahavira`s daily life. An idol of Mahavira has also been found at Mathura. The idol is said to have been built during the 5th century B.C. There is an inscription on this idol that states that king Ajatashatru worshipped Lord Mahavira.

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