Brill's Encyclopedia of Jainism Online

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According to the Śvetāmbara tradition (Jaini, 1979, 36), Mahāvīra, having delivered his first sermon only to the gods, found himself at the venue of a vedic sacrifice where animals would be offered. He thereupon delivered a sermon on the importance of ahiṃsā to the Brahman priests presiding there, and three of them became the first of his eleven gaṇadharas (chief disciples). This story points to the centrality of the issue of the treatment of animals in Jain …

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Babb, Lawrence A., “Animals”, in: Brill's Encyclopedia of Jainism Online, Edited by: John E. Cort, Denison University, Paul Dundas, University of Edinburgh, Knut A. Jacobsen, University of Bergen, Kristi L. Wiley, University of California, Berkeley. Consulted online on 20 September 2019 <>
First published online: 2019
First print edition: 20190206

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