Lord Mahavir was the twenty-fourth and the last Tirthankara of the Jain religion. He was born on the 13th day of the rising moon of Chaitra, in either 599 BC or 615 BC (depending on religious tradition). It will be celebrated on March 27th 2010.
According to Jain philosophy, all Tirthankaras were born as human beings but they have attained a state of perfection or enlightenment through meditation and self realization. They are the Gods of Jains. Tirthankaras are also known as Arihants or Jinas.
Lord Mahavir – Picture courtesy Jainworld
Daily Prayer for the Jains – Namokar Mantra
Every day Jains bow their heads and say their universal prayer, the Navkar-mantra. All good work and events start with this prayer of salutation and worship.
AUM namo ariha.ntaaNa.n, AUM namo siddhaanaM, AUM namo aayariyaanaM
AUM namo uvajjhaayaanaM, namo loe savvasaahUNaM
aiso pancha namokkaaro savva paavappaNaasaNo
ma.ngalaaNaM cha savvesiM paDamaM havai ma.ngalaM
Namokar Mantra in Hindi
ॐ नमो अरिहंताणं । ॐ नमो सिद्धाणं । ॐ नमो अायरियाणं ।
ॐ नमो उवज्झायाणं । ॐ नमो लोए सव्वसाहूणं ।
ऐसो पंच नमोक्कारो सव्व पावप्पणासणो ।
मंगलाणं च सव्वेसिं, पढमं हवई मंगलं ।
Meaning of Namokar Mantra
My obeisance to all Arihantas (enlightened souls)
My obeisance to all Siddhas (liberated souls)
My obeisance to all Acharyas (religious leaders)
My obeisance to all Upadhyayas (religious teachers)
My obeisance to all Sadhus (saints and monks).
This five fold salutation which destroys all sin is pre-eminent as the most auspicious of all things.
aiso pancha namokkaaro : These five salutations are capable of
savva paavappaNaasaNo : destroying all the sins and this is
ma.ngalaaNaM cha savvesiM : the first happiness among all forms
paDamaM havai ma.ngalaM : of happiness.
In the above prayer, Jains do not ask for any favors or material benefits from their Gods, the Tirthankaras or from monks and nuns. They do not pray to a specific Tirthankara or monk by name. By saluting them, Jains receive the inspiration from the five benevolent for the right path of true happiness and total freedom from the misery of life.
Listen to audio mp3 version of Namokar Mantra (Navakar Mantra)
References and additional sources: