Shravanabelagola, February 3, 2006: The stage is all set for the dharmic rituals of the Mahamasthakabhisheka celebrations of Bhagawan Bahubali to attain criticality on Saturday with the Panchakalyana Mahotsava, a six day long homage of grat significance to Adinatha, the first Theerthankaras and father of Bahubali.
The euphoria surrounding the Mahamasthakabhisheka celebrations of Bhagawan Bahubali has overshadowed this event being conducted since the first celebrations nearly 1025 years ago. The Panchakalyana programme is a day long celebration, marking a remembrance of the Teerthankara tradition. And this year Vice President of India Sri Bairon Singh Shekawat will be the chief guest of Panchakalyana programme on February 6, the third day when the rituals feature Adinatha’s coronation as well as renunciation.
At this year’s Panchakalyana Mahotsava being held from February 4 to 9, all stages of the life of Adinatha would be re-created through dharmic rituals on the one hand and through simultaneous theatre performances on the other to ensure that the message of the first theerthankara is communicated to the nearly 20,000 strong gathering of devotees and pilgrims expected to attend the celebrations each day.
Work is under way at a hectic pace in the giant Panchakalyana Pendal and the Samskara Shala being put up for the celebrations nearly three kms away from the Mutt premises.
The celebrations will feature the life and times of Adinatha, also known as Rushabhanath, from his conception in the womb of this mother, his birth, his penance, his renunciation and his attainment of Nirvana- the five stages of his life. “During the panchakalyana, all the struggles Adinatha underwent will be imparted on a statue of the first theertankara and the panchakalyana rituals will turn that statue fit of worship or installation in any Jain temple anywhere in the world,” says Sukumar Tatobha Upadhye, one of the five prathishtacharyas of this year’s panchakalyana. The other prathishtacharyas of the panchakalyana, a position of honour, are M J Ratna Raju, Shanthiraja Shastri, Hasamukh Lal Jain and Parshwanath. Seven to fourteen assistants will assist them.
“The root mantra of panchakalyana celebrations is ‘Nemichandra prathisha thilaka’ and this year the panchakalyana will be performed on a 21 inch Adinatha statue made of saffron Jaipur marble, sculpted by the local sculptors,” says Upadhye, who has performed as many as 225 Panchakalyanas, essentially meaning consecration of a statue into a deity, in different parts of the country including Maharashtra, Ayodhya, Nagpur, Delhi and Rajasthan. The white marble statue of Adinatha consecrated during the last Mahamasthakabhisheka (1993) is worshiped today at the Samava Sarana Temple at Nallore in Karkala taluk of Udupi district.
At the panchakalyana celebrations, apart from the main statue, other statues along with 24 copper idols of the theerthankaras are also invoked through havans and homas with 1008 kalasha abhisheka being conducted on the second day with the liquids used including milk, tender coconut, sugar cane juice and saffron among others. The specially constructed Panchakalayana Nagar comprises 24 rooms, capable of housing 500 people complete with medical care centre, police station, continuous water supply, a langar and emergency services. – Jain Heritage Centres News Service (JHCNS)