THE STORY OF PARSHWANATH BHAGWAN
Bhagwan Parshwanath, the most worshippable, Tirthankara in the present Chauvishi had nine birth incarnations before he had been to born to the queen VAMA of the king ASHWASEN at Varanasi on the eleventh day of dark half moon midnight of Gujarati Month Magshirsh.
His nine previous births are:
- An Elephant
- Heavenly god in Sahstra heaven
- Kiranveg Vidyadhar
- Heavenly god in Achyuta heaven
- Heavenly god in Nav Graiveyak
- Kanakbahu Cakrin
- Heavenly god in Pranat Heaven and last one as Parshwanath
From the birth of Marubhuti he had entangled with Kamath Tapas. This continued until the last birth. When he was in the eighth birth he had undertaken Tapa of Vissthanak Padas and made sure to have strong bond of Tirthankara Naam Karma. Later on he went to 10th heaven. When he was in heaven he attended 500 auspicious occasions of Tirthankaras. He again bonded solidly with Adeya Naam Karma, one of the 103 Karma prakrutis. Hence, he is called Purushdaniya Parshwanath. Therefore, he is being worshipped very much nowadays.
Notable five Kalyanaks of Parshwanath are as under:
1. Chyavan kalyanak
2. Janma Kalyanak --- Magashirsh Vad Dasaham
3. Diksha Kalyanak --- Magashirsh Vad Agiyarash
4. Keval gyan Kalyanak --- Fagan Vad Chaudash and
5. Moksha Kalyanak. --- Shravan Vad Aatham
When he was in the womb of Vama she saw a huge serpent passing through her bedside so he is named as Parshwa after his birth. When he grew up he married to Prabhavati a daughter of king Prasenjit.
Encounter with Kamath Tapas:
Once upon a time Parshwa was sittin in the balcony with his queen Prabhavati, he heard noise and shouting on the road. He called upon a servant and inquired about it. He learnt that a Tapas had come at the outskirts of Varanasi and carrying out Yagya and had hypnotized the people of the town with his magic power. Parshwa went to the spot due to curiosity. He asked some irritating questions to Tapas.
Tapas was irritated and turned angry. However, Parshwa was as cool as ice. He did not pay attention to the words of Tapas. He, then asked his servants to break open cautiously the burning wooden piece as there were twin serpents inside it.
Servants opened it and found the facts. Twin serpents were half burnt and already on the verge of loosing their conciousness. Again Parshwa asked his servants to let the twin serpents listen the "Namaskar Mahamantra." Servants obliged to the order and said Mahamantra. At the end of their life they went to Patal-loka and turned to be Husband and wife as Dharnendra and Padmavati respectively. (Details can be had from Parshwa—Dharnendra Nexus by Prof. M.A. Dhaky) Later on Tapas was downgraded by the audience and gathered heavy spite and deceit for Parshwa. He died and due to his pre-determined Tapas he turned to be heavenly god in the Meghkumar category. His name mentioned in the scripture as "MEGHMALI."
Here Parshwa left the scene as if nothing had happened. His time for initiation drew near and Lokantik Gods came to remind him for the initiation. Before he set out for renunciation of the world, charity custom began to relinquish all the worldly wealth for the one year. After completion of the charity work, he embraced the royal path to salvation. At this stage he attained fourth Gyan called ManahParyaya.
Last and final encounter with Kamath:
Once upon a night time Parshwa was meditating near "AHICATRA" town at present in UP. He was so concentrated vigorously in the meditations, he had forgotten the outer world and totally in the own SOUL, Kamath due to predetermined vow realized because of his Gyan that Parshwa was alone now and he could satisfy his will. He came down to earth and started harassing Parshwa in whatever possible means he could. He did not get success. He then produced with the help of his divine power the huge gathering of the dark clouds and started raining heavily with horrible thunderstorms and lightening. He did it so vehemently and dangerously that the outskirts of the Ahicatra town was submerged with the flood waters. The water rose to the level of the nose of Parshwa.
The throne of Dharnemdra shook. He used his divine knowledge to know the cause of the shaking. He realized the matter. He understood his important duties and with his queen Padmavati, rushed to the spot of scene at once. They came there paid salute to the Parshwa and also asked for his pardon. Realizing their duties, Padmavati generated beautiful and fragranceful huge Lotus. She sat under the lotus and kept Parshw who was in the standing posture at that time in the lotus. Dharnendra also created shelter in the form of huge and decorated
umbrella over the head of Parshwa.
Now as the water level grows, the lotus move in the upward direction and due to umbrella shelter Parshwa was protected from the obstacles produced by the Kamath. Later on stabilizing the Parshwa and assisting him in his meditations, Dharnendra, formulated his another form and told Kamath to withdraw his divine power and allow Parshwa to meditate smoothly. Adamant Kamath did not listen to the advices and started quarreling with Dharnendra. Ultimately, Dharnedra won over and Kamath left the field defeated. Both Dharnendra and Padmavati after paying and praying worship to Parshwa also withdraw their divine power and left for their palatial residence.
As the night was over Parshwa finished his meditations without knowing what had happened during night and moved from there for another place. The very important thing is to learn from this incident. Kamath and Dharnedra were doing their respective jobs, one for destruction and other for protecting respectively, Parshwa was neither had attachment to Dharnedra nor did he have spite for Kamath. He was "STHITPRAGYA" in terms of Bhagwad Gita.
Parshwa attained Omniscience after 84 days of initiation. He then turned to be BHAGWAN PARSHWANATH. He established his own four-fold order. Aray Shubh Duatt became the principal Gandhar of that order. The souil of Ashadhi Shravak became Aryaghosh gandhar. The tonk of Shubh Gandhar is situated on holy pilgrimage place of Sammetshikhar. Parshwanath then moved for several years on this earth, devoting his life to annihilate the Tirthanakar Naam Karm. As his end of life drew near he approached Sammetshikhar and accepted Anasan with THIRTY THREE monks including his principal Gandhar. As the life remained for few samayas he stopped all the yogas of Mind, Speech and Body and attained 14th and last qualitative step of spiritual ladder "AYOGI GUNASTHANAK." Within the time required to speak five "Harshva" letters his soul relinquished its body forever and left for his salvation abode seat from where any soul never returns to this horrible and torturous world. The soul of Parshwanath now enjoys eternal peace and bliss.
Following are the names of Gandhar of Parshwanath:
- Aray Shubh Datta
- Arya Ghosha
- Arya Vashishta
- Arya Brahma
- Arya Soma
- Arya Shridhar
- Arya Virbhadra
- Arya Yashobhadra
- Arya Jaya
- Arya Vijay