Jainism

Have you ever heard of that religion? Me neither, at least not until about a month ago. I was reading a report on CNN and it mentioned something about the Jains. Jains? I’d never heard of them so I had to look it up. Jainism, as it turns out, is a pretty old religion/way of life/philosophy. Founded in the Indian subcontinent, they eschew the idea of a creator God, practice vegetarianism and follow the doctrine of ‘ahimsa’ which is non-violence. I think those are pretty good values. There are two sects – Digamber and Swetamber. The Digamber mons are nude whereas the Swetamber ones are white-clad. Last week i drove up to the Hindu Temple and Cultural Center in Bothell to attend what I thought was a Jain ceremony. After the ceremony I learned it was actually a Hindu ceremony, meaning I participated in a Hindu ceremony for the first time in my life. Very interesting. I believe there’s another Jain ceremony next Sunday so I’ll go to that and, hopefully, it really is Jain. I’ve been reacing out to Jains online as I’m interested in their religion. I’m not exactly looking to become a Jain but there are aspects of it that intrigues me. There are about 4 million followers of Jainism in the world, mostly in India. The reason for the miniscule amount is the religion requires a lot of sacrifice and discipline, something a lot of folks don’t like. I’m practically celibate anyway so I’m already halfway to practicing their five core philosophies – non-violence to animals and plants, no stealing, no lying, celibacy and non-possessiveness. The whole idea about walking around naked is interesting to me, too, since I hate clothes and usually am naked in the house all the time anyway. Hopefully, this isn’t just some fad with me. I’ve been vegetarian for about a month now and it feels pretty good. I don’t feel bloated. I eel light. Yeah, I’m missing the shrimp and goat and squid and pork and duck. Such are sacrifices.

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