Shree Kshetra Arihanthagiri Thirumalai
There is Holy Mountain known as Arihanthagiri (Thirumalai) in Polur Taluk, Thiruvannamalai District, and Tamilnadu state of South India. The Mountain is also Vaigapur Thirumalai, Enguna Thirumalai, Iraivar Thirumalai; Srisailam Thirumalai in the inscriptions of Tamilnadu. Thirumalai Mountain is Arihanthagiri.
Situated by the village Thirumalai, Arihanthagiri is moderate in height, and consist of clean boulders. Of the huge of ascetics (Muni’s) who accompanied the last Shuruthakevali Bhatrabhagu Muni to South India in the 3rd Century A.D, A major group came to Thirumalai under the head of Acharya 108 Shree Vishakachariya Muni Maharaj, settled here engaging themselves in spiritual discipline. It is an important event in Jain history. At the foot of the Mountain there is an ancient basadi (Temple) and beautiful caves, four feet high statue of Bhagawan Neminatha Bhagawan Parsuvanatha and Shree Kushmaandini Devi (Dharma Devi) were set up in a cave some 900 years ago. Two feet high statues of Bhagawan Neminatha and Bhagawan Adhinatha are set up, the former in the sanctorum and the later in the outer quadrangle. The statues are on the palayanka-asana.
The cave is deep. In olden days Jain Monks used to study and Meditate here.The roof of the cave is painted with pictures of Samavasarana,Jamboo-Dveepa etc.,
The cave contains information about the Samadhi of Muni Sri Vadeebha Simha, the author of “Gadya Chinthamani”. In another basadi there is a beautiful clay statue of ‘Sri Mahaveera Swami’ two feet high. On the mountain there is an 18 feet tall, fascinating statue of Bhagawan Neminatha Swami depicting Kayotsarga. This is the tallest of Bhagawan Neminatha Swami in South India.
The inhabitants of this locality and the surrounding region traditionally believe that severe diseases are cured by accepting the sandal paste- holy –water after bathing this statue in the abhisheka ritual. There is a statue of Kayotsarga of Sri Parsuvanatha Swami, three and half feet in height in one Basadi.
With a view to inculcate religious and cultural values in children and to kindle the torch of knowledge in them. H.H. Dhavalakeerthi Bhattaraka Swamiji’s started the “Acharya Shree Akalanka Vidya Peetha Gurukulam” following the footsteps of great Acharya who had established a similar academy in this region in the remote past. Here, young students are given secular education along with traditional religious education in Gurukulam style. Sanskrit, Prakrit and Hindi are taught here.
The Corner-Stone of the new building of “Acharya Shree Akalanka Vidya Peetha Gurukulam” was laid by Padmabhushan Dr. Shree. D. Veerendra Heggade (Shree Kshetra Dharmasthala Dharmathikari) on 22.12.1999 retired and experienced teachers and shastris have been appointed to teach the students secular and religious subjects effectively. Care has been taken to develop the character and personality of the student. Some selected student, who have completed their SSLC examination or send to Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan for further studies. Facilities and encouragements or provided to the students of the Vidyapeet to peruse various suitable courses such as Shastry, Pandit, Ritualist. Bachelor and Master Degree courses, Fine Arts and Computer Courses successfully so as to settle in life peacefully.
Every morning the students perform collective prayer at 5.00am and worship in the temple at 6.30am. Every Evening they Pray, Meditate and carryon Aarati at 6.30pm. On Sundays the students go up the mountain (Arihanthagiri Hill) to have Dharshana of 1008 Sri Neminatha Bhagawan (22nd Thirthankara). They participate in the religious functions of the Kshetra & attend the spiritual discourses of the Swamiji.
The Gurukul Vidyapeet started functioning with 9 children in the beginning. In the year 2002 arrangements were made to enroll, accommodate, educate and feed 75 students. The number then rose to 200 in 2007. Both boys and girls are given admission to the Gurukul Vidyapeet. No fee is charged on the student. The institution provides cloths, oil, soap, book, school fee, medicines and other necessities free of cost. Proper care has been taken to provide good education hygienic food and descent accommodation to the students.
In order to achieve progress and development of the historically famous holy place of Shree Kshetra Arihanthagiri. H.H. Karmyogi Swasthi Shree Charukeerthi Bhattaraka Swamiji of Shree Kshetra Shravanabelagola (Karnataka) initiated Dheeksha on 19.11.1997 Sri Dharanendra Shastri as Swasthi Shree Dhavalakeerthi Swamiji and encouraged in to work towards the goal. Swasthi Shree Dhavalakeerthi Swamiji formerly son of (Late) Sri V.A. Parsvanaatha Nainar – Suguna Ammal of Uppuvelur Village, Vanur Taluk, Villupuram District in Tamil Nadu.
Received is initial academic religious and spiritual training in the Brammacharya Ashrama of Shri Gommateshvara Vidyapeet of Shri Kshetra Shravanabelagola then in Ganesh Prasad Variniji Digambar Jain Gurukul Jabalpur (M.P). In the graceful presence of H.H. 108 Acharya Shree Vidya Sagar Maharaj then further under the guidance of Her Holiness Aryaka 105 Gnanamathi Mathaji and Aryaka 105 Chandhana Mathaji of Hasthinapur and finally in the Syadvada Maha Vidyalaya in Banaras. Swasthi Shree Dhavalakeerthi Swamiji obtained the degrees of Hindi Sahitya Ratna Shiksha, Shastri Hindi M.A… He received the degree of “Jain Darshanaacharya” with the prestigious Gold medal of Sampoornaananda Sanskrit University of Banaras (U.P.).
Shree K.R.Narayanan, the then Vice President of India, Presented the Gold Medal to him. With a sound practical knowledge of Jyothisha (Astrology) and Vasthu Shastra, Swasthi Shree Dhavalakeerthi Swamiji has proved his merit as Prathishtaacarya by performing several Pancha Kalyanas, Vidhi Vidanas, and Aaradanas over the years.
With a view to enhance further and consolidate the achievements realized so far. In this region H.H. Karmyogi Swasthi Shree Charukeerthi Bhattaraka Swamiji, Shree Kshetra Shravanabelagola formally appointed his disciple Swasthi Shree Dhavalakeerthi Swamiji as the president of the Dharma Peeta of Shri Kshetra Arihanthagiri Thirumalai on 08.02.1998, Sunday.
Swasthi Shree Dhavalakeerthi Swamiji wholly devoting himself to the all – round development and progress of Shree Kshetra, under the Skillful and efficient guidance of H.H. Karmyogi Swasthi Shree Charukeerthi Bhattaraka Swamiji of Shree Kshetra Shravanabelagola Karnataka. Has planned and started several of the following schemes:-
For All Enquiries please Contact:-
Acharya Shree Akalanka Educational Trust®
Regd.8/2002,U/S 12A (a), Exemption U/S 80 G (5) (VI), FCRA
Arihanthagiri Thirumalai – 606 907
Polur Taluk, Thiruvannamalai District
Phone: +91 04181-244325