Origins of Jainism:
Its geographical origin is in Eastern India around the 7th century BCE which makes it one of the oldest religions although presently holds a religious minority in India. Jainism was the state religion for lengthy periods of time of Indian kingdoms. It was a time and place of religious renewal (or turmoil according to some scholars), in which several groups reacted against the formalized rituals and hierarchical organization of traditional Hinduism. It was in this fertile period that Buddhism developed as well (Paul Dundas, The Jains. 2nd Edition. Routledge, 2002).
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Jainism / Origins and Philosophy http://www.jainnetwork.com/Origins-and-Philosophy-Ajainism_1/
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Key Beliefs of Jainism
Jainism has its historical roots in Hinduism, however, the religions are different.
Jainism is based in Cosmology. Jains believe that the universe and everything in it is eternal. Nothing that exists now was ever created, nor will it be destroyed. The universe consists of three realms: the heavens, the earthly realm, and the hells.
There are seven levels of heaven in Jain cosmology. The top level, "the Realm of the Jinas" is reserved for liberated souls. ...
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Discuss the common characteristics Jainism shares with the others.
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