क्षमा वाणी दिवस ( A day of forgiveness )

Dr. M.C.Jain
Rashtriya Digamber Jain Parishad (Regd)


Every religion in the world has its own significance and importance for the individual, for the family and for the community as well. Similarly every day has its own significance and importance in ones’ life. If we turn the pages of history we find that every day is categorically marked significantly for one reason or the other. क्षमावाणीदिवस—a day of forgiveness-, is also one of the glaring example which is celebrated every year by the Jain Community on the last day of Daslakshanparva– दसलक्षणपर्व . It carries a message to all living and non-living creatures in the world to ‘FORGIVE ourselves for the ‘deeds we have done either knowingly or un-knowingly if such deeds have ever given any pain or hurt the feelings.’ 

Forgiving others and even forgiving ourselves is not always so easy. In fact, how do you forgive someone who has hurt you? How do you forgive yourself for regrets that you have? The truth is, even when we want to engage in the process of forgiving others or ourselves, we don’t always know how to go about it. Forgiveness is the experience of finding inner peace which our saint have telling us since long. One of the most difficult things we have to do during the course of our lives is to forgive those who wrong us. When we are hurt, our first reaction is usually to seek revenge and strike back. Revenge may provide temporary satisfaction, but usually the satisfaction is replaced by guilt, sadness, and remorse. Forgiveness lightens our heart and our spirit in a way that no amount of satisfaction from revenge possibly can. In the Jain Dharma it has a great significance and importance. In one of the Holy speeches of भगवान्महावीर (Lord Mahavir), he said “Forgiveness is the ornament of brave persons” (क्षमाबहादुरोंकाआभूषणहै.) But the bravery does not lie in proving the power but in Forgiving or क्षमा.

This is the day when all Jains repent for their past sins, ask for forgiveness from family, friends , enemies, and specially from those with whom they have struggled, for hurting them in any way either knowingly or unknowingly during the past year. It is essential to our spiritual advancement that we do not harbor ill will or hold grudges beyond a year. Hence, the annual occasion for repentance and forgiveness is the most important day in Jain tradition.

Certainly, there are a wide range of situations that we often experience and witness throughout our lives and some are easier to forgive than others. However, forgiveness is or may be possible in all situations. As forgiveness takes place within our heart, we may receive inspired thoughts and ideas of ways to initiate reconciliation. We may even find that once we shift our emotional energy around the other person through forgiveness, they actually initiate reconciliation because whether they are conscious of it or not, they may feel the shift in our energy. It involves repentance and sincere confession for past sinful deeds and thoughts as well as the forgiveness of others’ faults. This is in order to protect oneself through the process of spiritual discipline from present sinful acts, and prevent future sinful acts through renunciation

We often forget how important it is to forgive. If we never forgave, we would have an awful society. All people would need to have all the same thoughts and censor their true feelings otherwise we would have a world full of hateful and friendless people. Too many people would live unhappy and unfulfilled lives. 

There are a lot of benefits of forgiveness. We will be having stronger intuitive insight and a deepened experience of spiritual connection ,experience of thoughts and emotions that feel good, more often, higher level of energy and a better quality of sleep, increased happiness and peacefulness ,happier, healthier relationships, greater health and less stress ,clearer thinking and so on. The benefits and importance of क्षमा has also been described in “दसलक्षणधर्मपूजा” —- “उत्तमक्षमागहोरेभाई , यहजसपरभवसुखदाई” and also – “उत्तमक्षमाजहाँमनहोई ,अंतर – बाहिरशत्रुनकोई” very clearly in जिनवाणी ( जैनपूजासंग्रहपुस्तक ) 

Peace is not possible without forgiveness in the world. According to Martin Luther King, “Forgiveness is not an occasional act; it is a permanent attitude.” The only way children can learn the habit of forgiveness is by seeing us, their parents, forgive others and forgive ourselves. It generates the feelings of friendliness and love. It is the path to unlocking the knot of  hatred and to converting enmity into amity. In a nutshell, forgiveness can make our lives happy and peaceful. It can build a harmonious, peaceful andbeautiful society. 
KSHAMAVANI Parva (क्षमावाणीपर्व ) is a Parva of forgiveness which is supposed to be the first and foremost virtue of ascetics and scholars. It helps not only in pacifying anger and making us religious minded by removing all sins, but is also capable in keeping us hale and hearty. It is a virtue of humanity and an ornament of social courtesy. “Forget & forgive” is a symbol of greatness and one, being an embodiment of ‘love & greatness’, is capable to grant forgiveness that one need on this day of “KSHAMAVANI PARVA ”. 

Whether you are forgiving others or yourself, it is hoped that you will choose to give yourself the gift of forgiveness today.

On this auspicious occasion of Kshamavani (क्षमावाणी), we beg forgiveness for our intentional and unintentional wrongs, excesses, sins, that we might have done onto you.

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