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Gommateshwara Bhagawan Sri Bahubali Swamy Mahamasthakabhisheka Mahotsava - 2006

-Dr.H.A.Parshwanath

 Sri Swamiji continued as a successor of Swasti Sri Bhattakalanka Charukeerthi Swamiji as a boy of nineteen years. He was a student of Sri Gommateshwara Vidyala of Shravanabelagola. His original name was Ratnaverma and was changed into Kshullaka Sri Chandrakeerti on 12-12-1969. Later he was called Sri Charukeerti Swamiji.

He was born on 3rd of May 1949 at Varanga, Dakshina Kannada district. He completed his childhood days and primary education in Varanga, Karkala, Hombuja and Kundadri. He was called Sri Charukeerthi Panditacharyavarya on 19th April 1970. He also assumed the chairman ship of administrative committee of Sri Kshetra.  

He went to Indore to study Jaina Darshana and Jain agamas in Sanskrit and Prakrit languages in which he was deeply interested. He was trained by Nathulal Shastri regarding Hypothesis and Justice. He evinced greater zeal to learn Hindi and attained Sahitya Visharadha degree in Hindi. He was deeply interested by the discourses rendered by His Holiness Acharya Sri Vidyanandji Maharaj. He paved the way for establishing the bridge of contact between the Jains of south and north. On returning from Indore he concentrated completely on framing and planning the developmental programmes and schemes for Sri Kshetra.

The period between 1972 to 1979 is considered as the golden period during which time Shravanabelagola entered into the golden pages of history. Swamiji played a pivotal role in organising the Jain samaj and awakened it by traveling all over the country. He studied the ins and outs of the Jain samaj. He developed lose proximity with it and renovated almost all the Jain temples of Shravanabelagola with the help of devotees. He constructed many guest houses and dharmashalas for the pilgrims and gave a new dimension to the place. This facilitated the pilgrims, devotees and tourists to stay comfortably by utilising the facilities provided. Another important point to note was that in 1974 he awakened the Jain community by planning Dharmachakra Sri Vihar which year marked the 2500th year of nirvana of Bhagwan Mahavira. The people thronged to witness from nooks and corners of villages, towns and cities of the country irrespective of the caste and creed. This led to the incarnation of message of BHagwan Mahavira among the people.

In 1979 he envisaged the measures to provide necessary facilities by constructing guest houses to the pilgrims visiting Shravanabelagola and which was a prelude for the Mahamasthakabhisheka of Lord Bahubali held in 1981. Acharya Sri Vidyanandaji Maharaj was the driving force behind all his achievements and contributions. The 1000th year of Mahamasthakabhisheka was held successfully. This implied the greatest skill and dedication of Swamiji in organisational abilities as a result Smt Indira Gandhi, the then prime minister of India conferred the title Karmayogi on him. Swamiji rendered his services as chairman of the Mahamasthakabhisheka celebration committee when Bahubali statue was installed by Sri Veerendra Heggade, Dharmadhikari at Dharmasthala in 1982.

Swamiji involved himself in many socialand academic of the place by drawing the attention of the people and leaders of the community. Ten villages around Shravanabelagola was selected for implementing the developmental programmes. These places were provided with basic amenities such as drinking water, water tanks, community health care centres, roads and light. Ambulent hospitals, self employment schemes, education and services were established providing opportunities for all the people at large.

He studied the principles of Jainism to its core along with Dr.T.G.Kalagatagi and gained greater knowledge about the religion. He studied the classics of Plato, Aristotle, Socrates and other Greek philosophers as well as the modern philosophers like Bertrand Russel, Dr.Radhakrishnan, Sri Aurobindo and Swami Vivekananda. He immensely studied Bhagavadgeetha with interpreatations along with Ramakrishna Rao of Mysore. He also studied Dvaitha, Advitha, Vishishtadvitha and SHakti Vishishtadvitha philosophies and also Buddhism, Islam and christianity. He studied Upanishads and its dimensions in depth. He attained supremacy of knowledge by studying Dhavala, Jayadhavala and Mahamadhavala at the abode of Sri Vasupujya. During this period he obtained the postgraduate degrees in history from Mysore university and in philosophy from Bangalore university. He also studied Acharya Kundakunda's works and especially Samayasara.

With a vision to propagate the message of Jaina philosophy he established and devloped Sri Gommatesha Vidya Peetha and also the award - Sri Gommatesha VIdyapeetha Puraskara. He also established primary and secondary education centres, Bahubali College of Pharmacy, Engineering and Nursing courses to impart modern education to the students and aspirants. He has established endowment organisation of Prakrit Gnana BHarathi in Bangalore to provide the Knowledge in Prakrit even to the common people. Many conventions have been held in Bangalore have been held at Bangalore and Hyderab in this connection, Prakrit Gnana Bharathi Award ha been conferred on many scholars in the field. He established National Prakrit Study and Research Centre in Shravanabelagola which as inaugurated in 1983 by Sri Shankar Dayal Sharma the president of India. He has also founded Sri Chavundaraya Award in 1993 at Kannada Sahitya Parishad, Bangalore  in name of Sri Chavundaraya the Ganga Commander-in-chief. This is conferred on erudites in Kannada literature and language.

He has started Charitable Ayurvedic hospital, laboratories, x-ray departments and Gommateshwara mobile hospital. He possesses visionary ideas for the development of Sri Kshetra.

He possesses a command over Jainism and languages such as Kannada, Hindi, English, Sanskrit and Tulu. He has all over the globe and spread the message of Lord Mahavir. Especially in countries of Europe, Africa, America and Asian continents. He headed the paqnchakalyana pratishta mahotsav of establishing the Bhagwan Mahavir statue in the Jain temple of Leicester (UK).

He was conferred with the title 'Jina Dharma Prabhavaka' by Acharaya Sri Vardhaman Sagar.

Sri Swamiji has provided Shravanabelagola a unique identity in the world tourists map through his foresight and visionary thinking.

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Bibliography:

1. Kalyananda Haadi: Ed.Dr.Siddalinga Pattanashetty (1999)

2. Shravanabelagola Srigalavara Bashana Sangraha: Ed. A.Shantharaja Shastry (1932)  

3. Shravanabelagola Ondhu Samikshe: Ed. Dr.G.S.Shivarudrappa (Bangalore University Publication, 1983)

4. Gommateshvara Commemoration Volume: Ed. Dr.T.G.Kalghatgi (Published by: S.D.J.M.I. Managing Committee Shravanabelagola, 1981)

5. Dhavala Teertha - 1995: Ed.Sri Jeevandharkumar Hotapeti  (Published by: S.D.J.M.I. Managing Committee Shravanabelagola, 1981)

5. Dhavala Teertha - 1996: Ed.Sri Jeevandharkumar Hotapeti  (Published by: S.D.J.M.I. Managing Committee Shravanabelagola, 1981)

 

 

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