Jainism being one of the oldest religions of the world and an Indian religion has its history deeply rooted with India since time immemorial from the times of Lord Rishabanath and has continued till date. This is very evident through the historical sources that have been discovered from time to time through excavations and inscriptions. The articles acquired during the excavations have served as authentic sources about the existance of Jainism. The articles acquired during the Harappa and Mohenjodaro excavations containing the evidences on the worship of Lord Adinatha is one of the most authentic and historic sources on the antiquity of Jainism.
Moving, further the Jain idols and inscriptions got from underneath the earth have also provided considerable evidence on the antiquity of Jainism. These idols have been acquired either through the excavations at different heritage sites or have been got from underneath the earth accidentally. Irrespective of the means they have been acquired these sources have further helped the historians in proving the antiquity of Jainism.
With inscriptions, the inscriptions found at the Udayagiri and Khandagiri hills of Orissa from 2nd century B.C. of the times of King Kharavela have been considered as the most oldest of the Jain inscriptions. Many other inscriptions found in different parts of the country have further helped the historians in exploring more information related to Jainism. These inscriptions contain information related to different Jain kings and kingdoms; Jain Munis, Muni Sanghs and Gachhas; information on the Jain temples and information on their year of construction and attached properties to the temple for its maintenence; information on the donations made by different people to the upliftment of the religion and to the construction of temples; information on religious proceedings and religious tussles with different religions and so on.
Manuscripts - the Jain manuscripts found in different parts of the country have provided information on the different Jaina Puranas, Jaina Stories, Jaina Pooja Customs and the teachings of the Tirthankaras. These have also added to the antiquity of the religion.
Temples - In addition to the sources mentioned above the Jain temples found across the length and breadth of India stand as a clear testimony of the antiquity of religion and help us understand the followership and popularity Jainism had and has in India. Starting from the northen most states of Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi (national capital region), Uttarpradesh, Jharkhand; eastern states of West Bengal and Orissa; Western states of Maharashtra and Gujarat till the southern most states of Andhra Pradesh; Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu we can find numerous Jain temples spread widely in almost all the states.
In this section we have made our sincere attempt to present the information of the above mentioned Jain inscriptions; manuscripts and temples across India. We have made our sincere attempts to present information of as many Jain Heritage Centres as possible to the utmost accuracy. However, with the huge volume of these monuments and many other constraints we might not have covered information of some of the Heritage Centres and there might be some mistakes in the presentations. Please feel free to send us information of such missing places so that they can be placed under this section.
You can send us information and images of such Jain Heritage Centres by mail - firstname.lastname@example.org or feel free to call us at 91 9880818869.