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Jain sadhvi duo preach ahimsa in US

    Chennai (Tamil Nadu), September 15, 2013: At a time when travelling abroad or using gadgets like mobile phones and computers is still taboo for many Jain sadhus

    (monks) and sadhvis (nuns) here are two young nuns who embraced monk-hood immediately after graduating, and have crossed the seas to sermonise in the US.

    Both Samani (nun) Dr Suyashnidhi from Beng­aluru and Samani Shruth­nidhi of Chennai have been preaching ahimsa and vegetarianism in a meat-loving world. “The response

    has been very good,” say the samanis who were in the city. They have been visiting 11 out of 67 Jain centres in the US including Los Angeles, Detroit, San Francisco, New York, New Jersey, Memphis, Chicago, Washington and Richmond.

    A large number of Indians who migrated to the US in the ‘60s or ‘70s and are struggling to follow the Indian culture. “Many Jain centres there have pata­salas.

    Cultural programmes are conducted and Indian culture is taught to the Indians there,” say Suyashnidhi and Shruthnidhi who were in the city after a visit to the US.

    They had even delivered a lecture in Virginia Commonwealth University urging students to follow three ‘A’s — Ahimsa (non-violence), Anekantavada (non-absolutism) and

    Aparigraha (non-possessiveness).

    “All students agreed to follow non-violence and over 500 persons promised to follow vegetarianism,” the Samanis who both currently pursue Ph.D in Jainology in Mysore

    university, said. Interestingly, unlike other nuns, they have a separate dress code.

    They had earlier visited Singapore and Malaysia. “Jain sadhus and sadhvis are discouraged from using vehicles for travel. But our gurudev Paraschandraji Maharaj and

    Guruji Dr Padammuni Maharaj chose us to travel abroad and propagate Jainism,” they said and this unique exemption had given them a golden opportunity to preach the

    principles of Lord Mahavir abroad while their sisters walk the length and breadth of India.

    Belonging to the Sthanakvaasi sect, these two young samanis are looking forward for a trip to Germany, the UK, Belgium and Eur­ope soon. “Fusion of culture is

    pervading everywhere… influence of western culture is affecting the youth… we are creating awareness in society and teaching them to follow ahimsa and vegetarianism,”

    Shruthnidhi and Suyashnidhi say. – News & Image Courtesy: Deccan Chronicle

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