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JAINA Newsletter: Pravasi Bhartiya Divas, Feature Your Painting In JAINA Calendar 2020, etc...
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Jai Jinendra!

Hope all of you had a great start to the New Year!

JAINA Calendar committee plans to feature paintings related to Jain theme in JAINA Calendar 2020. If you would like to have your artwork published in the calendar, read the details below.

Last date of registration for Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention has been extended till January 10, 2019. More details are given below.

Warm Regards,
Gunvant Shah
JAINA President


That which subdues passions, leads to beatitude and fosters friendliness is called knowledge.

- Bhagwan Mahavir


Q 1: What are the Ghati Karmas?

Q 2: What are the Aghati Karmas?


Hope you have received 2019 JAINA Calendar and are enjoying the selection of lesser-known but important Jain Temples of India. Planning for 2020 Calendar has just begun.

For the next year, JAINA Calendar Committee plans to feature paintings related to Jain theme by the Jains of North America - young or old. If you would like to have your artwork published in JAINA Calendar 2020, write to with a couple of sample pictures of your work. Please do not submit artwork featuring an image of a Tirthankar.


The Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is a day that honours Indians living and working abroad. The day is celebrated once in two years to strengthen the engagement of the overseas Indian community with the Government, reconnect them with their roots and celebrate their achievements and contributions.

Last date of registration for Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention (at Varanasi, India, on 21-23 January 2019) has been extended till January 10, 2019 to make it possible for more overseas Indians to take part in the celebration. Register now at:


On December 23, 2018, the Shah and Gandhi families from Jain Society of Houston hosted a yearly food drive as a family tradition to provide meals for the less fortunate. In the spirit of community service, family and friends came together and packaged meals, water bottle cases, blankets, and clothing. In the words of Winston Churchill, “We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give.”


Story #10 Vashisht Muni

The eighth Vasudev ruled on the land of Bharat Kshetra, spreading till the end of the Lakshman Ocean. On the banks of a river lived a sage named Vashishta, who resorted to various types of false penances and gave trouble to his body without the right understanding or correct faith in religion. He was well versed with chanting sacred hymns, performing rituals, reciting the Vedas and was gifted with many other skills. Unfortunately, all this knowledge was accompanied with a malicious vision and wrong faith. Nevertheless, he managed to draw large crowds that respected and honored him as they were blinded by ignorance. The ascetic lived in a small hut and spent his life eating roots, rhizomes, and fruits and drinking the pure water of the rivers.

One day, the dense growth of grass and grains in the compound around his hut attracted a pregnant deer who came by to graze. Being cruel and angry by nature, Vashishta quietly crept up behind the grazing dear and attacked her with a stick. The repeated blows injured it and the baby deer that was in the earlier stages of growth. He continued hitting them grievously causing the mother and the baby deer to die due to the intense pain and bleeding.

Please click here to read more.



From Robbery To Kevalgyan

In a town, there lived a gentleman with his lovely wife. Many nights he would not feel sleepy. He used that time to perform Samayik (sitting calmly in meditation or reading spiritual books, etc.). One night four robbers came to his town. While deciding where to rob they came near his house. They felt that his house was quiet and decided to rob here. The robbers entered his house. Actually at that time the owner was sitting in Samayik. He heard some noise and he realized that robbers are in the house. He did not scream but told to himself, "No one can take what is mine, I have right faith, right knowledge, and right conduct. Therefore, I should not be upset at the robbers and I must not disturb my samayik."

He further thought, "I am in samayik and no worldly thing should bother me. What did I bring with me when I was born ? And what would go with me when I die ? I came alone and I will leave this world empty-handed. Let there be trust in the path shown by Jina. It will give me the strength to complete this samayik in a peaceful frame of mind." Meanwhile, one of the robber threw a bundle of goods out of the window. The gentleman uttered, "Namo Arihantanam." When the robbers heard that, they were startled that instead screaming they heard "Namo Arihantanam". "Namo Arihantanam" also reminded them as if they have heard before. They started reflecting on these words and within a few minutes they attained Jati-smaran-jnan (knowledge of previous life). They discovered that they were also Jains like him and performed samayik but not like him. They praised his detachment for worldly things and repented on their current activities. They reflected on the purity of Samayik very sincerely and they burned up their four ghati (major) karmas and all four attained Kevaljnan.

When the gentleman finished his Samayik he saw the four Kevalis seated on golden lotuses. He bow down to them with admiration.

If we repent our mistakes and sins we can also get into a pure mental condition. Religious rituals are worthwhile, but if we do not observe them properly with pure heart and mind then they are meaningless. One, who repents his sins and decides not to repeat them would be born either in heaven or may even be liberated in same life.


On December 22, 2018, YJP Houston held its year end dinner at the renowned Tex-Mex restaurant Chuy’s, where Jain professionals came together to connect, enjoy delicious food, and discuss relevant modern questions in Jainism. A special thanks to Chuy’s for providing excellent custom Jain and Vegan food options for all its attendees.


A 1: Ghati karmas affect the true nature of the soul.

A 2: Aghati karmas do not affect the true nature of the soul, but affect the body in which the soul abides.

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