(Last Updated on : 20-04-2012)
Jain Reformers or Jain monks have contributed to the growth and development of Jainism and Jain Philosophy
. According to the Jains the Jain philosophy is everlasting and established on universal tenets. After the death of Lord Mahavira many intellectual scholars amongst the Jain monks contributed and gave a concrete form to the Jain doctrine within the parameters set by Lord Mahavira
. The names of these Jain Reformers have been listed below:
Acharya Bhadrabahu was a Jain monk. He was the spiritual teacher of Chandragupta Maurya
. Bhadrabahu is the author of several texts related to Jainism
. This includes some of the most important works like Upsargahara Stotra and Kalpasutra
. Bhadrabahu was born in Pundravardhana which is now in Bangladesh.
Kundakunda was a celebrated Jain Acharya as well as a Jain scholar monk of the 2nd century AD. He was a highly knowledgeable man who is credited with composing many divine classics. Few of the divine classics composed by him are Samayasara, Niyamasara, Pancastikayasara, Pravacanasara, Atthapahuda and Barasanuvekkha. He occupies a significant place among the members of the Digambara Sect
Tiruvalluvar is a famous Tamil
poet. He is credited with writing Thirukkural, an ethical work in Tamil literature
. He is claimed by Tamils who practice Jainism as their own. Thirukkural is one of most revered works in the Tamil. It consists of 133 athikarams or chapters. Each athikaram consists often kurals (rhyming Tamil couplets) therefore making 1330 kurals in total.
Acharya Siddhasen Diwakar
Siddhasen Diwakar was an intelligent Jain Acharya of his time. He had mastered the Holy Scriptures and realized their truth in a short time. In due course he became the most well known Jain scholar of the time. He is credited with compiling the celebrated Kalyanmandir Stotra. It is a monumental work in Sanskrit poetry.
Acharya Pujyapada belonged to the 5th century AD. He was a renowned grammarian and saint belonging to the Digambara tradition of Jains. Earlier before his initiation as a Jain ascetic, he was known as Devanandi. Acharya Pujyapada is regarded as the greatest of the early masters of Jain literature. He wrote in Sanskrit
, in prose and also in verse form.
Acharya Haribhadra Suri
Haribhadra Suri was a Shvetambar mendicant Jain leader and writer. He is well known for his works in Sanskrit and Prakrit language
which deal with Jain doctrines and ethics. As per tradition there are 1400 different works assigned to him. Some of the works are respected a lot in Jainism. His major teachings include tolerance for other traditions and that ultimate reality that can be seized from different perspectives.
Acharya Hemachandra Suri was an Indian Jain scholar, poet, and polymath. He is credited with writing on grammar, doctrine, prosody, and contemporary history. Acharya Hemachandra Suri was born in Dhandhuka, Gujarat
about 100 km south west of Ahmadabad
. His father Chachadev and mother Pahini Devi named him Changdev. At the age of 21 in 1110, he was ordained as an Acharya of the Shvetambar denomination of Jainism
Acharya Bhikshu was one of the great revolutionary saints of Jainisim. He is regarded as the founding father and first spiritual head of Jain Swetambara
Terapanth denomination. He was an ardent disciple of Lord Mahavira
. The principles laid down by Acharya Bhikshu later became the foundation of Terapanth. His Nav Padarth Sadbhav, which advocated a society free from exploitation, is regarded as a significant philosophical composition.
Acharya Rajendrasuri was a major reformer of 18th and 19th century in Shvetambar denomination of Jainism. He served as the leader of the Tapa Gachchha in 1880. He also helped in restoring shraman sanstha by reopening of Agam gachchha or Samakit gachchha. It is now known as "Tristutik" gachchha. Acharya Rajendrasuri was born on 3rd December, 1827 at Bharatpur
. He was born into a household of business man named Rishabhdas Parakh. He led many significant reformations. One of them was restoration and reconstruction of Jain temples
and installation of Jain images and establishment of different socio-religious organizations for the uplift of the Jains and propagation of Jainism.
Acharya Tulsi was a Jain Acharya who is credited with writing more than hundred texts. He is also regarded as the founding father of the Anuvrata. Acharya Tulsi was born into a pious and religious household of Jain traders in Ladnun. He was born in 1914 to father Jhumarmal Khated and mother Vadana ji. Acharya Tulsi displayed great vigour and enthusiasm in conceiving and as well as implementing the Anuvrat Movement for ethical regeneration of the nation. The movement began on March 2nd, 1949. There are five tenets of Anuvrat which are Truth, Ahimsa
, Non Possession, Non-stealing and Celibacy.
Acharya Mahapragya is the tenth Acharya of Terapanth. He was born in a small and serene village of Tamkor in the Jhunjhanun district
. He was born on 4th June 1920 to father Tolaram and Mother Baluji. He was conferred the epithet of "Mahapragya" by Acharya Tulsi. He was also conferred the epithet of Jain-Yoga Punaruddharka by Gurudev Tulsi.