Why Jain Avenue?
Naturally, religion strives for the well-being of all living beings. As against our search for materialistic happiness in an ostentatious world, religion shines a light on pathways for finding happiness ‘within ourselves’. Once we understand forms and meaning, there is hardly any confusion. One may find inner peace after accepting everything and everyone as-is. A person doesn’t look for water unless one is thirsty. Similarly, unless there is a strong desire to ‘know’, we do not dive deeper into understanding religion. Of course, we have a superficial understanding of the religion with certain processes, although we might not have the essential understanding. Even the processes are important, but more significant are the ultimate outcomes. Truth characterizes knowledge, but the medium of attaining knowledge weighs equal importance. What fully develops a person’s strength? It takes understanding, evaluating and implementing truth as a part of one’s character. Religion also amounts to the true understanding of the Karma, liberation from ego and practising humility in worldly affairs. Darshan is not just a philosophical concept, it has to be assimilated into our behaviour.
Let’s try to understand religion from the perspectives of actions, knowledge and devotion. It is this understanding that nurtures one’s character and the person attains true sense of the self and others while realizing real happiness. Several thinkers of the world have explained religion in relation to satisfaction, service, and gratitude to nature but none of them eliminated humane dimensions from it. Ironically, the kind of religion that we have developed talks only of uniting one’s soul with the divine, whereas what is needed is, an inward journey. We, simply, missed it and consequently, religion became the burden. Jain Avenue aims at bringing religion at the practical level along with introducing its core philosophical elements.
How to relate religion with the contemporary currents and select themes accordingly are our chief concerns every month. In no way, we want to add just another reading chunk to your platter. Among all the magazines, Jain Avenue aims to make religion a medium for self-realization, philosophy, knowledge and value systems. Religion needs to be made an essential virtue by liberating it from communal slenderness. For the followers of Jainism, the magazine has brought a fresh and harmonious tune of balanced worldview and self-realization in the testing times of ever -increasing collective deafness and noisy environment. It is being published in international language online. There is a tripartite angle to the magazine; to reach out to the youth through English, to make a mass appeal through technology and to bring to surface applicable aspects of Jainism rather than mere reverence. It is very important that the soul retains its true spirit and one develops faith in it. Samyak – a balanced philosophy, knowledge and character make up a happy life. As a part of the personality, everyone has desires, jealousy and antagonism with varying degree. Counsellors tell us that it is very difficult to get rid of these emotions, and to do that one has to develop objective, comparative and contented attitude for life. Only then one can empathize with other living beings; compassion and non-violence become a part of natural disposition.
For the past several months, Jain Avenue has developed a dialogue with you by publishing conceptual articles and videos on the key aspects of Jaina philosophy. Clear thoughts and the Ultimate form of the soul go hand in hand. A combination of feelings and rationality is a must for the discovery of truth. At times, our intellect refuses and our path of development is hampered. Striking a fine balance among faith, knowledge and actions develops inner wisdom. In short, we get strength to respect life, non-violence, kindness; and win over senses. Then we develop empathy for all the living beings on the planet effortlessly. A little magazine has brought a ray of hope at your doorstep, please open the door!
Dr. Sejal Shah ( Ph.D )