Shreyamsanatha, Śreyāṃśanātha, Śreyāṃsanātha, Shreyamsa-natha: 2 definitions


Shreyamsanatha 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.

The Sanskrit terms Śreyāṃśanātha and Śreyāṃsanātha can be transliterated into English as Sreyamsanatha or Shreyamshanatha or Shreyamsanatha, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

[«previous next»] — Shreyamsanatha in Jainism glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Jainism

Śreyāṃsanātha (श्रेयांसनाथ) is another name for Śreyāṃsa, the eleventh Tīrthaṅkara (Janism recognizes 24 such teachers or Siddhas). His colour is gold (kāñcana), according to Aparājitapṛcchā (221.5-7). His height is 80 dhanuṣa (a single dhanuṣa (or, ‘bow’) equals 6 ft), thus, roughly corresponding to 146 meters. His emblem, or symbol, is a Rhinoceros.

Śreyāṃsanātha’s father is Viṣṇu and his mother is Viṣṇu according to Śvetāmbara or Veṇudevī according to Digambara. It is an ancient Jain practice to worship the Tīrthaṅkara’s parents in various rites, such as the pratiṣṭhāvidhi, according to the Ācāradinakara (14th century work on Jain conduct written by Vardhamāna Sūri).

Source: The Jaina Iconography

Śreyāṃśanātha (श्रेयांशनाथ) refers to the eleventh of twenty-four Tīrthaṃkaras or Jinas, commonly depicted in Jaina iconography.—The Jaina texts concur in giving Śreyāṃśanātha the symbol of a rhinoceros. The Yakṣa and the Yakṣiṇī to serve him as guards of honour, have been named as Yakṣeta and Mānavī (Digambara: Īśvara and Gaurī) respectively. The tree special to him was Tumbara or Tindaka according to some authorities. Rājā Tripiṣṭa Vāsudeva was to act as a Chowri-bearer.

The Jaina Purāṇas record his lineage. His father was a Kṣatriya prince of Ikṣvāku clan named Viṣṇu and his mother was called Viṣṇudri. His home was at Siṃhapurī, the present Sārnāth. The origin of his name has, as usual, a historical tale to explain it:—“King Viṣṇudeva possessed a beautiful throne, but unfortunately an evil spirit took up his abode in it, so that no one dare sit there. His wife, however, so longed to sit on it that she determined to do so at any risk; to everyone’s astonishment she was quite uninjured; so, when her son was born, he was named Śreyāṃśanātha, the Lord of good, for already he had enabled his mother to cast out an evil spirit and so do aworld of good (Śreyāṃśa)”. All his turbulence and forwardness on the part of both the mother and the child have been fittingly symbolised by the sign of a rhinoceros, so known for those qualities.

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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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