During the times of 20th Tirthankara of Jainism, Lord Munisuvrata as a part of the Navaratri celebrations lot of animal sacrifice was practiced on the ashtamai day and the animals were offered to Goddess Durga as bali. This day was called as Durgashtami. This act of animal sacrifice was stopped by Lord Munisuvrata and special prayers were offered. This practice of offering special prayers to the animals & other living beings (Jeeva/Jeevi) and showing Daya (compassion) on the Shukla paksha ashtami day in the month of Karthika is called as Jeevadayashtami.
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