Jain Nuns in New Jersey: Mobile Ascetics, Mobilizing Jainism

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Mr. G
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Jain Nuns in New Jersey: Mobile Ascetics, Mobilizing Jainism

Post by Mr. G » Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:07 pm

For weeks I tried to reach the samanijis by phone and email to schedule a time to meet. I was finally able to meet them on the day of their departure. It took me so long to reach them, not because they didn't want to meet, but because they were busy with visits, calls, meetings, blessings. I met samani Sharda Pragya ji, one of a pair of samaniji who came to New Jersey just one month prior to our meeting, and was on her way to Orlando Florida, and Mudit Pragya ji and Sangh Pragya ji who had spent ten months in New Jersey and were going back to India. Mudit Pragya and Sangh Pragya were returning to Rajasthan to reunite with their guru, with other Jain ascetics, monks and nuns, saman and samani, sadhvi and sadhu. They were returning to follow their guru on foot, walking for the next two months as far south as Madras, or as far north as Delhi, before getting on a plane again in February to return to New Jersey, where cars take them from house to house, where community, time, space and place are different, changing, yet still a part of their Jain duties and way of life.

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Blue Garuda
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Joined: Fri Sep 04, 2009 5:23 pm

Re: Jain Nuns in New Jersey: Mobile Ascetics, Mobilizing Jainism

Post by Blue Garuda » Sun Jan 16, 2011 2:58 pm

Fantastic. Jainism is strong in Rajasthan and I enjoyed their company often, in business and educational visits.

To maintain ahimsa when away from their home is especially difficult. Travel destroys many beings and food created without killing so much as a plant is hard to secure. I know some Jains in the UK that have everything shipped to them from India in order to maintain their practices purely.

How wonderful that these nuns are representing Jainism in this way. Some of the Jain sects believe that women may not attain enlightenment until reborn as man who is a practising ascetic. In their order women are, think, regarded as equals.

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