Gajasukumala, Gaja-sukumala, Gajasukumāla: 1 definition


Gajasukumala means something in Jainism, Prakrit. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

[«previous next»] — Gajasukumala in Jainism glossary
Source: Tessitori Collection I

1) Gajasukumāla (गजसुकुमाल) is the name of an ancient Jain Hero (who followed Mahāvīra’s example), according to the Samatārasa manuscript (dealing with the Ethics section of Jain Canonical literature), which is included in the collection of manuscripts at the ‘Vincenzo Joppi’ library, collected by Luigi Pio Tessitori during his visit to Rajasthan between 1914 and 1919.—The Samatārasa, composed in VS 1861 (1804 CE) praises the taste of equanimity (samatārasa) illustrated by Mahāvīra and traditional heroes who followed his example such as Gajasukumāla (vs. 6), Metārya (8), Sukosala (10), Khandhakamuni (11). They all held to asceticism and remained unshaken in front of various tortures and are thus celebrated as Jain martyrs.

2) Gajasukumāla (गजसुकुमाल) is the name of a work dealing with the lives of Jain teachers.—Accordingly, “Kṛṣṇa went to see his brother, Gajasukumāla, who, as a monk practicing kāyotsarga, had endured tortures from the Brahmin Somila and had reached emancipation. On the way he met an old lady carrying a brick on her head. Kṛṣṇa picked it up out of compassion. Then other people picked up the other bricks. Kṛṣṇa went to pay homage to Nemi. As he could not see his brother, he humbly asked Nemi. The latter told him what had happened to Gajasukumāla and how his murderer had in fact helped him to reach emancipation in no time (canonical attestation of the story in Antakṛddaśā, last part of iii.8)”.

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Jainism is an Indian religion of Dharma whose doctrine revolves around harmlessness (ahimsa) towards every living being. The two major branches (Digambara and Svetambara) of Jainism stimulate self-control (or, shramana, ‘self-reliance’) and spiritual development through a path of peace for the soul to progess to the ultimate goal.

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