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Jain symbols

Jainism Symbols - Buddhist Symbols

With its roots in India at least 2,500 years ago, Jainism is among the world’s oldest religions. The teachings of Jainism are eternal, and as a result, according to its traditions, it has no creator. However, the Jainism of this era may be traced back to Mahavira, a teacher from the sixth century BCE and a contemporary of the Buddha. The attainment of Moksha, or the all-knowing state, is the spiritual goal of Jainism. It involves being freed from the never-ending cycle of reincarnation. This can be accomplished through Ahimsa (nonviolence).  Like Buddhists, Jainists honor saints who have attained total liberation from the bonds of worldly life. The 24 Tirthankaras, who symbolize the apex of the Jains’ religious development and emerged as instructors at various points in history, are the most significant of them. The Tirthankaras, along with 12 Chakravartins (world conquerors), nine Vasudevas (counterparts of Vasudeva), and nine Baladevas (counterparts of Balarama, the elder half-brother of Krishna) constitute the 54 Mahapurusas (great souls), to which nine Prativasudevas (enemies of the Vasudevas) were later added. Other, less significant characters with Hindu influences include the nine Naradas (counterparts of the goddess Narada, the intermediary between gods and humans), the eleven Rudras (counterparts of the Vedic god Rudra), and the twenty-four Kamadevas (gods of love). The Bhavanavasis (house gods), Vyantaras (intermediaries), Jyotiskas (luminaries), and Vaimanikas (astral gods) are the other four categories of gods. Here is a list of some significant Jain Symbols with their details.

Lion Jain Symbol


The lion symbolizes Mahavira, the twenty-fourth and last Tirthankara of the present time cycle. Mahavira was born in ancient India in the early 6th century BCE to a noble Kshatriya Jain family. His mother’s name was Trishala, and his father’s name was Siddhartha. At around the age of 30, Mahavira gave up all worldly things and left home in search of spiritual enlightenment, becoming an ascetic. Mahavira obtained Kevala Jnana (omniscience) after twelve and a half years of rigorous meditation and severe austerities. For spiritual emancipation, Mahavira taught that the vows of ahimsa (nonviolence), Satya (truth), Asteya (non-stealing), Brahmacharya (chastity), and Aparigraha (non-attachment) must be observed. Mahavira is typically represented in a contemplative sitting (or standing) stance, with a lion sign underneath him.

Sarp Snake Jain Symbol

Sarp Snake

In Jainism, the snake is the symbol of Parshvanatha, the twenty-third Tirthankara. He is widely regarded as a propagator and revivalist of Jainism. Parshvanatha was born to King Ashwasena and Queen Vamadevi of Varanasi on the eleventh day of the dark half of the Hindu month of Pausha. He created an ascetic society after renunciation of worldly life. Parshvanatha gained moksha on Mount Sammeda, an important Jain pilgrimage destination. His iconography is renowned for the serpent hood that covers his head, and he is frequently worshipped with Dharanendra and Padmavati (Jain snake god and goddess).

Shankha Conch Jain Symbol

Shankha Conch

Neminatha is the twenty-second Tirthankara in Jainism, and the conch is his symbol. He was the youngest of the royal couple, Samudravijaya and Shivadevi. A common theme in Jain art is the story of Neminatha, who, upon hearing the screams of animals being slaughtered for the wedding feast, abandoned his bride, let free the captive animals, and renounced the world to become a monk. He had reached moksha on the Girnar Hills, a Jains’ pilgrimage site. Neminatha’s yaksha and yakshi are Sarvanha, Ambika, Gomedha, and Ambika. Neminatha is one of the twenty-four Tirthankaras that the Jains revere with the greatest devotion, along with Mahavira, Parshvanatha, and Rishabhanatha.

Blue Lotus Jain Symbol

Blue Lotus

In Jain cosmology, Naminatha, the twenty-first Tirthankara of the present half-time cycle, is symbolized by the blue lotus. He was a prince of the Ikshvaku dynasty, born to King Vijaya and Queen Vipra. Naminatha was born on the eighth day of Shravan Krishna in the lunisolar Jain calendar. In the shade of a Bakula tree, he obtained Kevala Jnana. He destroyed all of his karma, liberated his soul, and received Moksha from Sammed Shikhar. Naminatha is associated with the blue lotus.

Kachup Tortoise Jain Symbol

Kachup Tortoise

Munisuvrata, the twentieth Tirthankara of the present half-time cycle, is portrayed by a tortoise in Jain cosmology. According to Jain tradition, Munisuvrata came to Padmavati and King Sumitra on the twelfth day of the brilliant half of the month of Asvina from heaven named Anata Kalpa. He gained Omniscience (kevala jnana), the all-encompassing knowledge, after undertaking karma-destroying austerities for 11 months under a Champaka tree. His yakhsini is identified as Naradatta in the Svetambara tradition and Bahurupini in the Digambara tradition. Varuna is said to be his yaksha. In most representations, Munisuvrata is seen in a seated (or standing) meditation position, with a tortoise emblem at his feet.

Goat Jain Symbol


The goat symbolizes Kunthunath, the sixth Chakravartin, the twelfth Kamadeva, and the seventeenth Tirthankara in the current Jain half-time cycle. He, too, conquered all the regions and proceeded to engrave his name on the mountain foothills, just like every other Chakravartin. He realized his goals were dwarfed when he saw the names of other Chakravartin who were already there. Then, as a kind of atonement, he abdicated his throne and became a monk. Kunthunath was born on the fourteenth day of the Vaishakh Krishna month of the Indian calendar to King Surya and Queen Shridevi at Hastinapur in the Ikshvaku dynasty.

Deer jain Symbols


Shantinatha, the present era’s fifteenth Jain Tirthankara, is depicted by a deer. He was born in Hastinapur to King Vishvasena and Queen Achira of the Ikshvaku dynasty on the thirteenth day of Jestha Krishna. According to Digambara tradition, Shantinatha’s yaksha and yakshi are Kimpurusha and Mahamanasi, while according to Svetambara tradition, they are Garuda and Nirvani. One of the five Tirthankaras who receives the most fervent devotional worship among the Jains is Shantinatha, along with Rishabhanatha, Neminatha, Parshvanatha, and Mahavira.

Vajra Bolt Jain Symbols

Vajra Bolt

The Vajra Bolt is the symbol of Dharmanatha, the fifteenth Jain Tirthankara of the present age. Dharmanath was born in Ratnapuri to King Bhanu Raja and Queen Suvrata Rani during the Ikshvaku dynasty. His birthday fell on the third day of the Indian calendar’s Magh Sukla month. According to Jain teachings, he became a Siddha, a purified soul who has destroyed all of its karma. Dharmanatha is associated with Vajra.

Sahi Porcupine Jain Symbols

Sahi Porcupine

Anantanatha, the fourteenth Tirthankara in modern Jainism, is symbolized by a porcupine. He progressed into a Siddha, an enlightened soul whose karma has been eliminated, according to Jain theology. Anantanatha was born to King Sinhasena and Queen Suyasha at Ayodhya in the Ikshvaku dynasty. He was born on the thirteenth day of the Indian calendar’s Vaishakha Krishna month. Anantanatha is associated with the porcupine.

Boar Jain Symbol


Vimalanatha, the thirteenth Jain Tirthankara of the modern era, is represented by a boar. He emerged into a Siddha, a liberated soul whose karma has been eliminated, according to Jain doctrine. Vimalanatha was born to King Kratavarma and Queen Shyamadevi at Kampilya of the Ikshvaku dynasty. His birth took place on the third day of the Indian calendar’s Magh Sukla month. Vimalanatha is associated with Boar.

Bhaisa Buffalo Jain Symbols

Bhaisa Buffalo

Vasupujya, the 12th Jain Tirthankara of the current era, is represented by a buffalo. He was a member of the Ikshvaku dynasty and was born in Champapuri to King Vasupujya and Queen Jaya Devi. He was born on the fourteenth day of the Indian calendar month of Falgun Krishna. He maintained his celibacy and never wed. Vasupujya reached Kevala Jnana within one month of Tapasya and Moksha at Champapuri on the fourteenth day of the bright half of the month of Ashadh, Vasupujya is associated with Buffalo.

Gainda Rhinoceros Jain Symbol

Gainda Rhinoceros

Shreyansanatha, the eleventh Jain Tirthankara of the current period, is symbolized by a rhinoceros. According to Jain teachings, he became a Siddha, a freed soul who has destroyed all of its karma. Shreyansanatha, according to Jains, was born to King Vishnu and Queen Vishna in the Ikshvaku dynasty in Simhapuri, near Sarnath. His birthday fell on the twelfth day of the Indian calendar’s Falgun Krishna month. Bhagwan Shreyansnatha, along with the other 1000 saints, was freed and gained nirvana on Sammet Shikhar on the third day of the dark half of the month of Shravan. He is associated with Rhinoceros.

Kalpa Vriksha Sacred Fig Jain Symbol

KalpaVriksha Sacred Fig

Shitalanatha, the tenth Jain Tirthankara of the current era, is represented by the Kalpavriksha Sacred Fig. He evolved into a Siddha, a freed soul who has annihilated all of their karma, following Jain doctrine. Shitalanatha, a member of the Ikshvaku dynasty, was born to King Dashrath and Queen Nanda in Bhaddilpur. His birth took place on the twelfth day of the national Indian calendar’s Magha Krishna month. Brahma Yaksha, Manavi Yakshi, and Ashoka Yakshi are all connected to Shitalanatha, as are Swastika/Srivatsa, KalpaVriksha/Sacred Fig, and Swastika/Srivatsa.

Crocodile Jain Symbol


Pushpadanta Prabhu, the ninth Tirthankara of the current era, is symbolized by a crocodile. He was a member of the Ikshvaku dynasty and was born to King Sugriva and Queen Rama in Kakandi. The four-part sangha tradition was reinstated by Pushpadanta. Ajita Yaksha, Mahakali Yakshi, Sutaraka Yakshi, the Malli tree, and the Alligator emblem are all connected to Pushpadanta Prabhu.

Crescent Moon jain Symbols

Crescent Moon

Crescent Moon is the symbol of Chandraprabhu, the eighth Jain Tirthankara of the present age. He was born in Chandrapuri to King Mahasena and Queen Lakshmana Devi of the Ikshvaku dynasty. According to Jain traditions, he was born on the twelfth day of the Indian calendar’s Posh Krishna month. Chandraprabhu is typically represented in a lotus or kayotsarga pose, with a crescent moon sign underneath him. He is shown with a Shrivatsa and downcast eyes, as do all Tirthankaras.

Lotus jain Symbol


Red Lotus is the symbol of Padmaprabhu, the current sixth Jain Tirthankara. Padmaprabhu means “bright as a crimson lotus” in Sanskrit. According to Svetambara sources, his mother had a thing for a couch of red lotuses – Padma – when he was pregnant. According to Jain teachings, he became a Siddha – a freed soul and obtained moksha on Sammet Shikhar on the eleventh day of the dark half of the month of Margashirsha, together with 308 other saints. He is linked with the Red Lotus symbol, the Chatrabha tree, Manovega Yaksha, Mangupta Yaksha, and Syama Achyuta Yakshi.

Heron jain Symbol


Heron is the symbol of Sumatinath, the present fifth Jain Tirthankara. He was born in the Ikshvaku dynasty to Kshatriya King Megha (Meghaprabha) and Queen Mangala (Sumangala) at Ayodhya. His birthday fell on the eighth day of the Jain calendar’s Vaisakha Sudi month. He gained Kevala Jnana under the sala or priyangu tree. He attained the status of Siddha, a freed soul who has annihilated all of its karma. The Heron (Krauncha) symbol, the Priyangu tree, the Tumburu (Purushadatta) Yaksha, and the Mahakala Yakshi are all linked with Lord Sumithanatha.

Monkey Ape Jain Symbol

Monkey Ape

Monkey ape is the symbol of Abhinandannath, the current fourth Tirthankara. He became a Siddha, an enlightened soul who has annihilated all of its Karma, according to Jain teachings. He was born in Ayodhya to King Sanvara and Queen Siddhartha of the Ikshvaku dynasty. The ape symbol, Piyala tree, Yakshesvara Yaksha, Nayaka Yaksha, Vajrasrinkala Yakshi, and Kalika Yakshi are all related to Abhinandananatha.

Horse Jain Symbol


The horse is the symbol of Sambhavnath, the third Tirthankara according to Jainism. He was born in Sravasti to King Jutrai and Queen Susena. He also belonged to the Ikshvaku Dynasty. Sambhavanath, like all Arihant (omniscient beings), gained moksha after his existence by destroying all connected karmas (liberation). He reached Enlightenment in Shikharji. Sambavanath is linked to the horse symbol, the Sala tree, Trimukha (three-faced) Yaksha, Prajnapthi, and Duritari Yakshi.

Elephant Jain Symbol


The elephant is the symbol of Ajitanath, the second Jain Tirthankara of the present era. He was a soul that had been freed from all karma. He received Kevala jnana from Shikharji on the fifth day of the bright half of the month of Chaitra, and on Chaitra-Shukla-Panchami, he gained Moksha. Yogini & Ajithabala Yakshis, the Saptha-parna tree, the Mahayaksha Yaksha, and the Elephant symbol of Ajinatha are all associated with him.

Bull Jain Symbol


Bull is the symbol of Rishabhanatha, the first Tirthankara (Supreme Preacher) of Jainism, who founded the Ikshvaku dynasty and is said to have lived a very long time ago. According to Jain cosmology, he was the first of twenty-four teachers and was referred to as a “ford maker” due to the way his teachings enable someone to get across the sea of endless births and deaths. Typically, Rishabhanatha is shown in the lotus pose or kayotsarga, a standing meditation position. His long hair that reaches his shoulders and the depiction of a bull in his sculptures are what make Rishabhanatha unique. Along with the Nyagrodha tree, Gomukha (bull-faced) Yaksha, and Chakreshvari Yakshi, he is also known for his Bull symbol.

Loka Purusha Jain Symbol

Loka Purusha

In Jain cosmology, the Loka Purusha is the one who represents the cosmos. He occurs in Jain cosmograms and his body is mapped with the realms of the gods, mankind, and the damned. Urdhva Loka, the world of gods, is shown on his upper chest and is sprinkled with shrine figures. Manushya Loka, or the world of mankind, lies at the center, with each concentric circle representing a different aspect of terrestrial existence, ranging from rivers to mountains to animals. Adha Loka is the domain of people who burn in purgatory, and it is frequently symbolized by terrible pictures near the Lokapurusha’s feet.

Shrivatsa Jain Symbol


Shrivatsa typically appears in the center of the Tirthankaras chest in artworks. The Shrivatsa is one of the eight auspicious symbols of the Svetambara Jains. In his medieval book, Acharya Dinakara says that the utmost wisdom emanated from the chests of Tirthankaras in the form of Shrivatsa, hence they are marked as such. It is also the sign of Tirthankara Sitalanatha or Lord Sitala. According to Digambara Jains, the Shrivatsa, or wishing tree, represents the tenth Tirthankara.

Nandy Avarta Jain Symbol


The Nandyavarta is one of the eight Ashtamangala or auspicious symbols. Two Tirthankaras, or spiritual gurus, are also represented by it in Jainism. While the Nandyavarta represents the Digambara sect’s 7th Tirthankara Supershvanatha, the Svetambara sect’s Nandyavarta signifies the 18th Tirthankara Aranatha. Before beginning their daily prayers, Jainists are required to etch the auspicious symbols, including the Nandyavarta sign, in unbroken rice, according to Jain texts. In Jainism, the Nandyavarta symbol represents pleasure and plenty.

Kalasha Jain Symbol


In Jainism, the Kalasha is considered an auspicious thing. It appears in the Ashtamangala lists of the Digambara and Svetambara Jain sects. The Kalasha is decorated with two depictions of eyes, which stand for perfect knowledge and correct trust. Religious and social rites both employ it. In Indian art and architecture, the Kalasha is a decorative motif and a ceremonial artifact. Starting in the fifth century, the bases and capitals of pillars were decorated with the Kalasha design. It is usual to carry the Kalasha on one’s head while reciting mantras as one enters a new home. They carry this ritual out to formally welcome grace and joy into the new house. Kalasha is the symbol of Mallinatha, the nineteenth Tirthankara of the present Jain half-time cycle.

Siddha Chakra Jain Symbol

Siddha Chakra

Jainism embraces the Siddha chakra as a prominent yantra or mandala (mystical design) for worship. Siddha signifies a freed soul, and chakra means a wheel. Nirvana, or escape from the cycles of life inside a cosmic “wheel,” is thought to be attained by the worship of the Siddha chakra. The Digambara tradition refers to it as Navadevta, whereas the Svetambara tradition refers to it as Navapada. The center of the yantra is referred to as Navapada, which means “nine petals,” and Navadevta, which means “nine deities. “A “saint wheel” is another name for Siddhachakra.

Swastika Jain Symbol


Swastika is the symbol of Suparsvanath, the seventh Tirthankara in Jainism. It is also one of the Ashtamangala, or eight auspicious symbols, in the Svetambara tradition. The swastika must be present in all Jain temples and holy texts, and rituals often start and conclude with the creation of the symbol using rice. The swastika’s four arms stand for the four potential afterlife locations for a soul in samsara, the cycle of birth and death: Svarga (“heaven”), Naraka (“hell”), Manushya (“humanity”), or Tiryancha (“as flora or wildlife”). The Ratnatraya (three jewels) of Jainism are symbolized by the three dots that sit atop the swastika. The arc represents Siddhashila, a location in the highest regions of the universe made of pure energy. Siddhashila is higher than heaven, earth, or hell. It is the location where saved souls, such as Arihants and Siddhas, dwell eternally in the highest state of joy.

Jain Om symbol

Jain Om

The Jain Om symbol appears in ancient and medieval writings, temples, monasteries, and centers of sacred places in the religions of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism. In Jainism, Om is regarded as a shortened version of the Panca-Paramesthi, also known by their initials A+A+A+U+M. The initials of the five Parameshthis—Arihant, Asharira, Acharya, Upajjhaya, and Muni—are abbreviated as AAAUM (or simply “Om”). The five lines of the Navkar mantra, which is the most significant component of the daily prayer in the Jain religion, are also represented by it in the earliest Jain texts. The Panch Parmeshthi are honored with the Navkar mantra.

Jain Hand Symbol

Jain Hand

The Jain Hand represents ahimsa (nonviolence). It stands for bravery and kindness for all living things. It implies being sure (not being afraid) and thinking things out before acting. The Wheel in the palm symbolizes samsara (world). It suggests Jains must maintain their awareness and modesty because a Jain’s rebirth condition will be affected if they conduct wrongdoing while unaware of the consequences.

Abhaya mudra Jain Symbol

Abhaya mudra

The Abhaya mudra, or fear-repelling mudra, may be observed in depictions of people sitting, standing, and walking. It is one of the oldest mudras, appearing on a variety of Hindu, Buddhist, Jain, and Sikh figures. The gesture can be performed with the right, left, or both hands. The hand is held up, palm outward, fingers clasped, and the arm is bent at the elbow. Protection, tranquility, compassion, and reassurance are some things that the Abhaya Mudra represents.

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