Brill's Encyclopedia of Jainism Online

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According to the Śvetāmbara tradition,1 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 tradition, for we see…

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Babb, Lawrence A., “Animals”, in: Brill's Encyclopedia of Jainism Online, Denison University University of Edinburgh University of Bergen University of California, Berkeley John E. Cort, Paul Dundas, Knut A. Jacobsen, Kristi L. Wiley. Consulted online on 03 June 2023 <>
First published online: 2020

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