Thursday, November 23, 2006

SANTHARA : The Ritual of fasting unto death voluntarily by ones own free will : A Picture Gallery

This is an age old Custom in INDIA , known as "Santhara" , where a follower or devotee of the JAIN sect , gives up all food and water voluntarily , and wait for Death.This is not considered dying but taking a "Samadhi" , becoming one with the supreme being, the all mighty.

Santhara is the Jain religious ritual of voluntary death by fasting. Supporters of the practice believe that Santhara cannot be considered suicide, but rather something one does with full knowledge and intent, while suicide is viewed as emotional and hasty. Due to the prolonged nature of Santhara, the individual is given ample time to reflect on his or her life. The vow of Santhara is taken when one feels that one's life has served its purpose. The goal of Santhara is to purify the body and, with this, the individual strives to abandon desire.

During the last days the person is in the company of fellow devotees who sing hymns and prayers and religious texts in order that the transition from the "Earthly" to the "Heavenly" is joyous and peaceful .

Email me for more pictures and comment

more Jain pictures at India Picture gallery

Also see my Video on JAINISM ,Jain life and philosophy , Mahamastakabhishek,Santhara and Jain munis.
Just Hit the PLAY button below and DISCOVER!
and don't forget to TURN ON the audio for a truly immersive experience

(also see my video on YOUTUBE about Lost Childhood and Child labor) click here

(and this travel video about HOLI : The colourful festival on India) click here

BLOG : Mumbai Streetview


Kroopa Shah (Kr00pz) said...

Hi there,
I came across your site while I was looking for some material related to Jainism on the internet. I really liked your video and your article on Santhara. I am currently with an organization that organizes Jain camps for kids in Canada. I was looking for some videos to compare what Jain life in India is compared to what it is in USA and Canada. I was wondering if you could provide me with websites or places I could obtain this kind of info from?
Thanks so much

David said...

I'm linking to this page on my web site, It'll be the What's New page under today's date - June 10, 2007. From there one can go further go into a section on death and dying and suicide but really mainly about Santhara. Anything more you have to add I'd be happy to hear about.
David Chadwick

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SGK said...

Dear Subhash,

Your photos on Santhara are amazingly good. I am really touched by the feel. Please accept my heart-felt congrats.

New Delhi

cats69 said...

I saw the show on natgeo taboo and was very moved by this act. Creating your on death on your own terms was a very moving experience for me. Thank you for bringing this ritual to light, in this day of confusion.