Acharya Rajendrasuri (1827-1906)
(आचार्य राजैंद्रसुरी) was the major reformer of 18th and 19th century in Shvetambar
sect of Jainism
Rajendrasuri was born on 3 December 1827
In 1880 A.D., as the leader of the Tapa Gachchha, he led a movement to restore orders of wandering monks, leading to near extinction of the Jain
Yati institutions. Afterwords he restore shraman
sanstha (श्रमण संस्था) by reopening of Agam
gachchha or Samakit gachchha, which is now known as "Tristutik
" gachchha. He opposed worship of other gods and goddesses in spite of Jain Tirthankars
Jainism in his own words-
"Jainism is society-oriented and condemns individualism. It dispels false logic, it is true for all times and a destroyer of the darkness of ignorance."
He wrote many books on Jainism
, the most famous being "Aabhidhan Rajendra Kosh", which is only one available encyclopedia of Prakrit
, and Pali
words used in Jainism
was born on Thursday 3rd December, 1827 at Bharatpur (Rajasthan
) in a family of business man named Rishabhadas Parakh. His birth name is Ratna Raj.
He had such a brilliant grasping power that at age of 10-12 years he had acquired all the educational studies. He was most obedient to the elders.He was always attracted towards sole minded with sacrificing attitude towards a calm and peace of mind.
When he was 14, his father and mother died leaving him to live a sole, unselfish, always helping nature towards other. He began to be more anxious to have the company of great JainAcharyas
He was Having religious bent of mind he renounced the worldly life and was initiated as Jain yati
by Hemavijayaji at Udaipur
on Friday, Vaishakh shukala 5 Vikram Samvat
1904(in 1848 A.D.) and he was now known as Ratnavijay (early name of Rajendrasuri).
He had studied diligently the Jain scriptures
, rhetoric, lexicography, etc. under Acharya
Pramodsuri and Jain Monk
Sagarchandji, the well-known yatis of the age and soon he acquired proficiency. Jain
Acharya Dharanendrasuri was so much impressed by the profound scholarship of Rajendrasuri that he appointed him his daftari
and entrusted the task of teaching the groups of yati disciples.
But soon Ratnavijay (Rajendrasuri) was disgusted with the princely and luxurious life of Dharanendrasuri, it was an utter disregard and contradiction to the Jain principles
of non-possession and non-violence. Consequently Rajendrasuri left Dharanendrasuri in 1864 A.D. and this was a turning point in the life of Rajendrasuri.
Now he raised his voice against the corrupt and luxurious life of the Jain yatis and condemned their abundance of possession and insisted on a pious ideal life in accordance with the principles laid down by Jain Tirthankaras and Jain holy scriptures.
After prolonged deliberations, he issued none-point manifes known as Nav-kalama to for the purpose and explained to the Jain world the significance of his nine principles of reform that the Jain yatis had to follow.
It was a vigorous attempts to reform the institution of Jain yati and place it on sound, simple and rational principles and get rid of its age old traditions and superstitions.
Though opposed in the initial stages, the attempts of Rajendrasuri were ultimately crowned with success.
His nine-point manifesto was accepted and recognized by the leading yatis and Jain monk of the age and even Acharya Dharanendrasuri also signed it. As a result of this the Jain yatis/Monk had given up their worldly life and surrendered their princely symbols like silver rods, chanwar, palkhi, arms, etc. to the Jain temples, and tool solemn oath to lead a life of purity, simplicity, celebacy, non-possession, non-violence, teaching and preaching.
Thus Rajendrasuri reformed and simplifies the Jain yati/monk institution, Tristutik(tin thui) sect of Jainism, and a new life of revivalism was infused in them. He opposed worship of other gods and goddesses in spite of Jain Tirthankars.
Rajendrasuri did not end at the reformation of the Jain yati institution, it was his first task of revival movement. His other achievements were restoration and reconstruction of Jain temples and installation of Jain images and establishment of different socio-religious organizations for the uplift of the Jains and propagation of Jainism. Like a pious, true, diligent monk, devoted to the cause of Jainism.
He walked from place to place in Rajasthan, Gujarat, Malwa, etc. teaching, preaching and infusing new spirit of the age among the people. He appealed to the masses by delivering his discourses in simple dialects of the people, the common spoken languages of the masses, - Malwi, Gujarati, Marwari, etc.
He inspired the Jain monks to study profoundly the Jain scriptures. He himself devoted to the deep study of Jain works.
He was bitterly opposed to the storage of Jain works in isolated places; he eagerly desired to bring them to light for the propagation of Jainism. He himself wrote collected and edited certain important Jain works. He complied the famous Jain encyclopedia "Abhidan-Rajendra Kosh". It is a monumental work in seven volumes with more than 90 thousand pages. This work itself places Rajendrasuri on a high pedestal of Jain scholars and pioneers of religious movements of the nineteenth century.
Important books with "Abhidhan-Rajendra Kosh" (अभिधान राजैंद्र कोश)(Encyclopedia-7 Volumes with 90 thousand pages)was a outstanding achievement of the 19th century. It has become an inspiration and an example for Jain encyclopedia efforts in our time.This text is widely consulted by Jain scholars. Ordinary Jains may not come across it, but it has significantly influenced study of Jainism.
written by Acharya Rajendrasuri include:
- 1. Shri Abhidhan Rajendra Kosh(अभिधान राजैंद्र कोश)
- 2. Prakrit Vyakruti (Commentary on Grammar)
- 3. Sri Kalpasutra Prabodhini (Commentary on Kalpasutra)
- 4. Khartar Taskar Prabandh (Unpublished)
- 5. Bhagawati Sutra Sateek
- 6. Gachchhar Payanna
- 7. Terapanth Prashnottar Vichara
- 8. Shri Mahanishitha Sutra(fifth)
- 9. Brahata sangrihani
- 10. Upasaka Dashanga Sutra
- 11.Prakrit Sahbda Rupawali
- 12.Deepmalika Katha (Story of Diwali Festival)
- 13.Holika Katha (Story of Holi Festival)
- 14.Shri Ganhdharvad
- 15. Karma Vichar (Unpublished)
- 16. Tatva Vichar (Unpublished)
- 17. Sri Kalpasutra Balavabodh
- 18. Sri Jinupadesh Manjiri
- 19. Kalyanmandir Stotra (Commentary)
- 20. Jyotirya Kalpalata
- 21. Swarodhya-gyan and Yantravali
- 22. Vichar-sar Prakranam
- 23. Sanskirt Vyakarnam (SanskritGrammar)
- 24. Laghu Sanghgrahani
- 25. Amarkosh (Original)
- 26. Navpad Puja Prasnothar
- 27. Upadhan Vidhi
- 28. Sratakatriyam (Bhatruhari)
- 29. Chandrika Vyakaranam
- 30. Kavyaprakash Mulamam
- 31. Varnamala
- 32.Upasaka Dashang Sutra
- 33.Ek Sou Aath bol
- 33.Upadesh Ratna saara
- 34.Treloyaka Deepika Yantravali
- 35.Karna Granth (four)
- 36.Saptati Shatasthan Yantravali
- 37.Dwashisth Margana Yntravali
- 38.Shada Dravya Vichara
- 39.Sidhnta Prakash
- 40.Asthanhika Vyakhyana
- 41.Sindura Prakara-satika
- 42.Bhayhara Stotra
The original copy of All the books are stored in Gayna Bhandar of Ahore in Rajasthan, Jaora, Mohankheda in M.P. and Tharad & Ahmedabad in Gujrat
On the 21st December Friday 1906 A.D.,Vikram Samvat
1963 Pous Shukla Saptami , the great helping nature, Religious-Preacher Acharya Rajendrasuri laid down his body for the Moksha Prapti (for heaven) till death in a still Samadhi. A great saint who was in his own a different kind having same date of birth and death.
After the 100 years of Nirvana
, Shri Mohan Kheda Tirth (Rajgadh-Dhar
, M.P.) is most reputed holy place all over the world. Every year devotees from all over world (in lakhs) gather here to attain the Spiritual and Chamatkarik Aarti of Acharya Rajendrasuri on his birth and Nirvana
day by Hindu
calendar month posha
The year 2006 is celebrated as Shatabdi Mahotsava,in memory of 100 years of Nirvana of Rajendrasuri at Mohan Kheda Tirth in Dhar district of Madhya Pradeesh in India.
A Book has been Published By Swetambar Jain Weekly News Paper to Mark Cenetary Celebration of Swargarohan of Acharya Rajendrasuriji giving complete details of all the GURU Mandirs (temples) dedicated to Acharya Shri Rajendrasuriji Maharaj.
FAMOUS Temples DEDICATED To ACHARYA RAJENDRASURI
- Sri Rajendrasuri Jain Guru Mandir, Santhu Bagra (Marwar), Jalore district, Rajasthan, India with artistic mirror work on the walls of temple.
- Sri Vasupujya Jain Temple along with Guru Mandir of Rajendrasuri, Chennai-3, Tamil Nadu.
- Sri Rajendra Jain Guru Mandir, 8th Kamathipura Lane, Mumbai, Maharastra.
- Sri Rajendra Guru Mandir, Monakheda, Mona, Thane District, Maharastra.
Rajendrasuri's successor Jain Acharyas
According to Jain tradition the succession of Acharya Rajendrasuri is as follows:
- Acharya ShriMadvijay Dhanachandra surishwar Ji (1839-1920)
- Acharya ShriMadvijay Bhupendra surishwar Ji (1887-1936)
- Acharya ShriMadvijay Yatindra surishwar Ji (1883-1960)
- Acharya ShriMadvijay Viddhachandra surishwar Ji (1906-1982)
- Acharya ShriMadvijay Jayantsain Surishwar Ji (1936-current)
- Acharya ShriMadvijay Hemendra Surishwar Ji (current)
References and sources
- 1.RajendraSuri Smaraka Granth
- 4.'Kathāmr̥tanidhi'-By Anantabhaṭṭ & Rama Saksena(ISBN 8170813417)
- 5.'Jainism in Rajasthan'-By Kailash Chand Jain,Published in 1963 by Gulabchand Hirachand Doshi.
- 6.'Jaina Grantha Bhandārs in Rājasthān'-Written By Kastoor Chand Kasliwal,Published in 1967 by Shri Digamber Jain Atishaya Kshetr(Shri
- 7.'Acharya Rajendra Suri, the revolutionary Jain saint' Written By Kasturchand M Jhabak.
- 8. Rajendra Suri: A Reformer and Revivalist
- 9.Photo Galary http://dhar.nic.in/photo_gellery-mk.htm