Article: Śānti

Contributed by Jasmine Kelly

Śāntinātha or Lord Śānti is the 16th of the 24 Jinas of the present cycle of time.

The word Jina means 'victor' in Sanskrit. A Jina is an enlightened human being who has triumphed over karma through practising extreme asceticism and teaches the way to achieve liberation. A Jina is also called a Tīrthaṃkara or 'ford-maker' in Sanskrit – that is, one who has founded a community after reaching omniscience.

This piece is a summary of the article "Śānti". The full article will be available soon.

Story and images

This manuscript painting depicts the 16th Jina Śāntinatha or Lord Śānti, with lay people around him, raising their hands in worship under a domed roof. The statue's jewellery, ornate headdress and open eyes indicate that it belongs to the Śvetāmbara sect.

Worship of Śānti
Image by British Library © CC0 1.0 (Creative Commons Public Domain)

There is no historical evidence of Śānti’s existence but traditional writings recount his life as following the usual career of a Jina. Tradition holds that he was born in Hastināpura and achieved liberation on Mount Sammeta, also known as Pārasnātha Hill.

Śānti’s symbolic colour is gold and his emblem a deer.

Like all Jinas, Śānti has a pair of spiritual attendants, often shown in art. His yakṣa is Kiṃpuruṣa to the Digambara sect and Garuḍa to the Śvetāmbaras. The Digambaras call his yakṣī Mahāmānasī while the Śvetāmbaras name her Nirvāṇī.

Related Manuscripts

Related Manuscript Images

  • Twenty Jinas

    Twenty Jinas

    British Library. Or. 11921. Unknown author. 1488

  • Ten Jinas

    Ten Jinas

    Victoria and Albert Museum. IS 46-1959. Unknown author. Late 15th to 16th centuries

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