Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Caritra

by Helen M. Johnson | 1931 | 742,503 words

This page describes Description of Lavanoda which is the twenty-fourth part of chapter III of the English translation of the Ajitanatha-caritra, contained within the “Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Caritra”: a massive Jain narrative relgious text composed by Hemacandra in the 12th century. Ajitanatha in jainism is the second Tirthankara (Jina) and one of the 63 illustrious beings or worthy persons.

Part 24: Description of Lavaṇoda

Next, surrounding Jambūdvīpa, and twice as wide, is the ocean named Lavaṇoda. It is sunk 1000 yojanas in the ground, and its water increases very gradually in depth for a distance of 95,000 yojanas from both sides. In the middle there is a crest uniformly 10,000 yojanas wide, 16,000 yojanas high. In addition to that, at the time of the tides there is a decrease and increase up to 2 gavyūtas. In it, in the directions, east, etc., there are 4 Pātāla-vessels, named Vaḍavāmukha, Keyūpa, Yūpaka, Īśvara, respectively, beginning with the east. They are 100,000 yojanas high; have walls of diamond 1,000 yojanas thick; are 10,000 yojanas wide at top and bottom; and have water in the third part supported by wind, resembling large clay water-jars. In them, the gods Kāla, Mahākāla, Velamba, and Prabhañjana, respectively, live in pleasure-houses. Here there are others—1,000 yojanas high, with walls 10 yojanas thick, 100 yojanas wide at the bottom[1] and at the mouth—7884 small Pātāla-vessels, with waters mixed in the middle part and raised by the wind. Nāga-kumāras to the number of 42,000, like ministers, are always controlling the inner waves in this ocean. There are 72,000 outer wave-controllers, and also 60,000 guardians of the crest waves.

Gostūpa, Udakābhāsa, Śaṅkha, Udakasīmaka, made of gold, aṅka, silver, and crystal are the mountains of the Indras of the Velādhārins. They are the abodes of the gods Gostūpa, Śivaka, Śaṅkha, and Manohṛda; and are in the (four) directions at 42,000 yojanas (from Jambūdvīpa). They are 1721 yojanas high; 1022 yojanas wide at the base, and 424 at the top. On top of them all there are gleaming palaces.

Karkoṭaka, Kārdamaka, Kailāśa, and Aruṇaprabha, made of all jewels, are the mountains of the Indras of the Aṇuvelādhārins.[2] The gods Karkoṭaka, Vidyujjihva, Kailāśa, and Aruṇaprabha, respectively, live always on these.

At 12,000 yojanas (from Jambūdvīpa) in the intermediate directions in the east are the two islands of the Moon, with an equal width and length (i.e. 12,000). At the same distance in the west are the two islands of the Sun; and also at the same distance is Gautamadvīpa, the abode of Susthita.[3] On these are palaces, the abodes of the inner and outer suns and moons of Lavaṇoda.

The water of Lavaṇoda is salt.

Footnotes and references:


Both the larger and smaller vessels have a diameter in the middle equal to the height. K. p. 243.


These are in the intermediate directions.


The lord of Lavaṇoda. Provac. 883-89, p. 258a.

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